8 of Little Rock's Best Hikes
Little Rock is a city surrounded by nature, so finding the right spot for a hike is never hard. We've got you covered whether you're looking for a leisurely stroll or a strenuous hike. This list is in order of difficulty, with the hikes getting more challenging the further down the list they appear.
William E. "Bill" Clark Presidential Park Wetlands Boardwalk
Right in downtown Little Rock is one of the city's most fun trails. An elevated boardwalk roams through a beautiful wetland setting allowing visitors the chance to see aquatic wildlife right in the heart of the city. Be on the lookout for turtles, fish, frogs, and different waterfowl on your walk.
Located in Pinnacle Mountain State Park, the Kingfisher Trail offers visitors of all ages the chance to take a leisurely walk through nature. The flat, hard-surfaced trail follows the meandering headwaters of the Little Maumelle River and features abundant wildlife and beautiful cypress trees.
Lorance Creek Natural Area TrailA 20-minute drive south of Little Rock, the Lorance Creek Natural Area allows visitors to explore the groundwater-fed swamp that surrounds Lorance Creek. A paved trail leads from the parking area to an extended, elevated wooden boardwalk that weaves between bald-cypress and pine trees. This complex ecosystem is home to numerous species of aquatic plants and abundant wildlife. Be on the lookout for beaver, deer, salamanders, turtles, crawfish, and frogs as you explore the trail.
Little Rock Audubon Center's Trail System
We all know that Little Rock has diverse ecosystems, ranging from mountains to rivers and even urban landscapes. But did you know just southeast of Little Rock is the only nepheline syenite glade in the world? This unique habitat is only found in Pulaski and Saline counties, and you can explore it via the Little Rock Audubon Center's vast network of trails. While you're there, keep your eyes peeled for the many bird species that call the area home.
Located in North Little Rock with sweeping views of the Arkansas River, this is a popular spot for photoshoots and even just a good selfie. The park sits on a bluff above Big Rock Quarry Park. Those looking for a simple walk can explore the cliff from the top, while those looking to get their heart rates up can hike up from the quarry below.
Rattlesnake Ridge Natural Area
This critical natural preserve is located in West Little Rock and features a series of interconnected trails that carry hikers (and mountain bikers!) up the top of Rattlesnake Ridge. The ridge offers dramatic views of Pinnacle Mountain State Park and the other peaks in the Maumelle Pinnacles. Make plans to visit earlier in the day – the area's parking lot closes at sunset.
As one of the tallest points in Central Arkansas, Pinnacle Mountain is hard to miss. Visitors can summit the mountain from either the east or west sides. The west side is considered the easier of the two and is accessible from the same parking lot as the Kingfisher Trail mentioned above. The East Summit Trail presents a significantly more challenging route with several boulder fields to cross that require some scrambling. Regardless of the course you take, you'll be rewarded with iconic views of the Arkansas River, Lake Maumelle, and downtown Little Rock.
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