Recreation


kayaker floating on the Big Piney at Long Pool

Discover an Area by Activity

Select an activity to find an area to visit.

So Much To Do & See

The 1.2-million acre Ozark-St. Francis National Forests offer endless opportunities for adventure. As one of America's most scenic and picturesque areas, the Ozark-St. Francis provides a lot of the "natural" in the Natural State of Arkansas.

A variety of developed and dispersed recreation opportunities await you on the forests. Hiking, horseback riding, mountain biking, floating, kayaking, boating, camping, picnicking, swimming, hunting, fishing, four-wheeler riding and taking pictures are just some of the activities people enjoy while visiting the forests. Each of the recreation areas, trails, wilderness areas or wild and scenic rivers provides unique opportunities to observe nature and enjoy your favorite outdoor activities from cavern tours to hunting black bear and white-tail deer. The Ozark-St. Francis National Forests have something for everyone and are on the way to almost everywhere in Arkansas!

Rules for dispersed camping

Current recreation area fees and schedule

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

Current Recreation Conditions

Area Name Status Area Conditions
Barkshed Recreation Area Open Open Open
Bayou Bluff Point of Interest Open Open Open all year. No trash services. Pack it in - pack it out.
Bear Creek Lake Recreation Area Open Open Bear Creek Recreation area is located in Eastern Arkansas on the St. Francis National Forest. The Bear Creek Lake Recreation Area is managed by the Mississippi River State Park. Please call the Mississippi River State Park - Marianna Office for any questions at 870-295-4040. 
Blanchard Springs Campgrounds Open Open All areas open.
Blanchard Springs Caverns Open Open Dripstone Tour available. Discovery Tour will begin Memorial Day. Wild Cave Tour unavailable.
Blanchard Springs Day-Use Area Open Open Open
Blanchard Springs Recreation Area Open Open All areas open.
Brock Creek Open Open Open
Brock Creek Lake Recreation Area Open Open Open
Buckhorn Trail Open Open A landslide has caused a trail closure of the East Outer Loop Shortcut C. Map of closure available here. 
Cove Lake Recreation Area Open Open Open. (Beach area opens in April).
Gunner Pool Recreation Area Open Open Open
Haw Creek Falls Point of Interest Open Open Open. Camping allowed in designated sites.
Horsehead Lake Recreation Area Open Open Open for season
Lake Wedington Recreation Area Temporarily Closed Temporarily Closed Boat ramp and mountain bike trails open. All other facilities closed.
Long Pool Recreation Area Open Open Open
Moccasin Gap Open Open Open
Ozone Recreation Area Open Open Open
Pleasant Hill Shooting Range Open Open Open
Redding Recreation Area Open Open Open
Richland Creek Recreation Area Open Open Open. Water available seasonally.
Richland Creek Wilderness Open Open The road between Falling Water Falls and the Richland Creek Wilderness is prone to landslides. There are a couple of places where the road is down to one lane due to these landslides. Please be aware that the county may also close these roads to complete repairs.
Sams Throne Recreation Area Open Open Open
Shelton Point Shooting Range Open Open Open
Shores Lake Recreation Area Open Open Open. Beach area opens Memorial Day.
Spring Lake Recreation Area Open Open The Spring Lake Dam pedestrian walkway is closed to pedestrian traffic for safety reasons until repairs can be made. The dam itself is not affected. 
Sylamore Shooting Range Open Open Open. Closed on Wednesday mornings for maintenance.
Whitaker Point (Hawksbill Crag) Trailhead Open Open
White Rock Mountain Recreation Area Open Open Open
Wolf Pen Recreation Area Open Open Open

Spotlights

Blanchard Springs Caverns

Blanchard Springs Caverns is one of the most spectacular and carefully developed caves found anywhere.  Visitors enter a "living" cave where glistening formations like stalactites, stalagmites, columns, and flowstones are still changing.  These crystalline formations are the result of minerals deposited by dripping water.  Forest Service interpreters guide all tours. For more information about this natural wonder, check out the Blanchard Springs Caverns website.