Six Little Rock Trails to Fall in Love With
Social distancing doesn't mean staying inside. You can still be safe and responsible while taking in the fresh air and Little Rock's natural beauty. Here are some of the trails we've turned to recently for relaxation and exercise.
The 17-mile loop of the Arkansas River Trail connects the river fronts of both Little Rock and North Little Rock while also spanning the river’s beautiful banks. Natural bluffs, gorgeous parks, and breathtaking views of North America’s sixth longest river abound. A can’t-miss feature is the famous Big Dam Bridge, the longest pedestrian-intended bridge in North America.
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.
Located off a spur of the Arkansas River Trail, Two Rivers Park Trail connects Pinnacle Mountain State Park to the larger trail network. A beautiful bridge crosses the Little Maumelle River and, at night, is illuminated by LED lights bathing the structure in ever-changing patterns of color.
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 all sorts different waterfowl on your walk.
Lorance Creek Natural Area Trail
A 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 trails 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 is full of 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. What’s a nepheline syenite glade, you ask? A glade is any opening in the woods where bedrock is at the surface. In this case, that bedrock is nepheline syenite, a gray, granite-like rock. Nepheline syenite is found around the world, but its glades occur only in central Arkansas. Trees can’t grow within glades, allowing grasses and wildflowers to grow where there is sufficient soil.
While you're there, keep your eyes peeled for the many bird species that call the area home. Look for Eastern Bluebirds, Purple Martins that have just arrived and the last few wintering Song Sparrows.
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