WILD & SCENIC ARKANSAS IN THE FALL
17-23 OCT, 2021, (7 DAYS/6 NIGHTS)
with Jeremy Woodhouse
Fall is one of the most popular times of the year to visit Arkansas because of its excellent fall foliage. Every autumn, nature paints the mountains and valleys of The Natural State with gorgeous hues of gold, red and orange. Many of Arkansas's visitors travel here for special fall vacations to catch a glimpse (and take some incredible photos) of the season.
Fall colors begin to appear in the Ozarks and other northern sections of the state by the second week in October and continue slowly southward. Mid to late October generally provides peak fall color in the northern portions of Arkansas.
Pre-Tour: 16 Oct, 2021
Arrive in Dallas Fort Worth and transfer to the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Irving DFW Airport North (hotel not included in workshop fee).
Day 1: 17 Oct, 2021—DFW/Talimena Scenic Drive/Mena (220 miles)
You will be picked up from your hotel at 8:00AM and we will begin our drive northeast towards the Oklahoma town of Talihina. From here we will begin the Talimena Scenic drive, arguably one of the best scenic drives in the United States. You will see outstanding views all along this twisting, winding 54 mile stretch of road, ending up in the beautiful town of Mena, AR
O/N Executive Inn at Mena
Day 2: 18 Oct, 2021—Mena/Hagarville/Jasper
We start out by visiting Bard Springs to the south of Mena. Bard Springs is a 0.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Mena, Arkansas that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for walking and nature trips.
We will then drive to the trail head for Blaylock Creek Falls—everything you could want in a waterfall. It is beautiful, boasts a swimming hole, and is secluded, yet easily accessible.
This afternoon we head north towards Jasper located in the Oachita Mountains where we will spend the next 3 nights. On the way we will stop off at the falls on Haw Creek. Haw Creek Falls Trail is a 0.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Hagarville, Arkansas that features a waterfall.
O/N Riverside Motel, Jasper
Day 3-4: 19-20 Oct, 2021—Jasper
Over the next 2 days we will explore the multitude of scenic spots in the rich area of the Ozarks. We will take hikes to spots including the Hawksbill Crags, Roark Bluff, Triple Falls, and locations on the Buffalo River Trail. We will have extra time here in case of bad weather and to have the opportunity to revisit favourite spots.
The hiking trail is known by two different names, Hawksbill Crag Trail and Whitaker Point Trail. This is a great hike and ends at one of the #1 photographed points and locations in Arkansas—Hawksbill Crag. The crag has been featured in many promotional publications throughout the state of Arkansas and the United States. Along the Hawksbill Crag trail you can see beautiful Ozarks scenery and a natural Ozarks forest, and wonderful Arkansas fall colours during the season.
Roark Bluff is a popular haven for photographers. The way the bluff catches the sunrise in the mornings, it's wet-weather waterfalls, and easy access, make it a great destination for photographers along the Upper Buffalo River area.
Triple Falls (Twin Falls)
Triple Falls is one of the most beautiful and photographed waterfalls in the Ozarks and in Arkansas. The official name is Twin Falls, but in high water it has three distinct falls. Triple Falls is located at Camp Orr Boy Scout Camp south of Harrison, AR.
The Buffalo River
The Buffalo is a natural flowing river through the Ozarks and is known for its canoeing, clear water and scenic bluffs. The forests surrounding the river are the hardwoods and pines typical of the Ozarks.
O/N Riverside Motel, Jasper
Day 5: 21 Oct, 2021—Jasper/Petit Jean State Park/Morrilton
Leaving the Ozark Mountain town of Jasper, we spend the day driving south on Scenic State Route 7 through the Ozark Mountains, famous for fall foliage, and the Ozark National Forest. We will stop to photograph expansive views of the Arkansas Grand Canyon.
Moving on, we will reach the Glory Hole Falls Trailhead. One of the most interesting waterfalls in Arkansas, the creek has created a hole through the ceiling of the overhanging bluff and the water pours into a pool below. Glory Hole Waterfall Trail is a 1.9 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Deer, Arkansas.
We move on to Falling Water Falls. Falling Beauty Waterfall also known as Falling Water Waterfall is a natural wonder that requires absolutely no hiking. It is literally roadside in the Richland Creek area of south Newton county in north Arkansas. This beautiful little waterfall is conveniently located right next to the road, so you don't even have to get out of your car to see it!
We’ll then follow Hwy 1205 which heads towards the Richland Creek Recreation Area. This stretch of road is incredible scenic and with fall colour in full swing, we will have plenty of opportunities for images.
Returning via Hwy 1205, we arrive at Petit Jean State Park, we will spend the rest of the afternoon exploring the park. At sunset we will photograph the view looking over a large bend in the Arkansas River from Petit Jean’s Grave Site.
Petit Jean's Grave Site at Stout's Point on the mountain's East Brow is Petit Jean State Park's most well-known overlook. This is a peaceful place to enjoy the breathtaking view of the Arkansas River below and learn about the romantic legend of Petit Jean. An elevated, barrier-free walkway including wayside exhibits affords views from different points around Stout's Point. Legend tells of the young French girl who disguised herself as a cabin boy so she could secretly accompany her fiancé to the "New World". Petit Jean became fatally ill and requested to be buried here.
O/N Super 8 by Wyndham, Morrilton
Day 6: 22 Oct, 2021—Petit Jean State Park/Mt Nebo State Park/Mt Magazine State Park/Morrilton
We will begin the day with a sunrise shoot at one of the many overlooks in the State Park. We will then hike the Cedar Creek Loop Trail, followed by the Cedar Falls Trail which will bring us to the base of one of the greatest waterfalls in Arkansas, Cedar Falls.
Overlooks in Petit Jean State Park
Rising 1,120 feet above the Arkansas River Valley, Petit Jean Mountain offers sweeping views and many overlooks from which to enjoy them.
The Mary Ann Richter Overlook on Red Bluff Drive offers views toward other mountains including nearby 1,350-foot Mount Nebo and distant Mount Magazine, Arkansas's high point at 2,753 feet. Dardanelle Rock, Carden Bottoms and Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge are also visible from this overlook.
Further down Red Bluff Drive, the CCC Overlook is on the bluff of Cedar Creek Canyon. Built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps, this native stone overlook offers views of the Canyon and the Petit Jean River.
At the Palisades Overlook on Ark 154, you can look down into Cedar Creek Canyon or across to the CCC Overlook on the opposite rim. This overlook is an excellent viewpoint for watching the sunset over the Arkansas River Valley.
The Cedar Falls Overlook is a vantage point high above 95-foot Cedar Falls, one of the most photographed waterfalls in Arkansas. A barrier-free walkway with wayside exhibits leads down to this overlook.
In the afternoon we will head to Mt Nebo State Park, a mountaintop park located along the Arkansas River. Highway 155, as we approach the park is one of the curviest twisting roads you’ll ever see (great images to be made from above with a drone). Here we will hike some of the trails in the park including the Bench Trail which offers some of the best views in the state. We will of course check out seasonal Mt Nebo Falls.
If there is time, we will finish off the day with a sunset shoot at Mt Magazine State Park, the highest point in the State of Arkansas.
O/N Super 8 by Wyndham Morrilton
Day 7: 23 Oct, 2021—Morrilton/Little Rock/Dallas
After a sunrise shoot we will make the 6hr drive back to Dallas. If it works for you, we can drop you off at the nearby Little Rock Airport for your flight back home.
END OF TOUR
Weather in Jasper Arkansas in October
Daily high temperatures decrease by 10°F, from 76°F to 66°F, rarely falling below 52°F or exceeding 85°F.
Daily low temperatures decrease by 9°F, from 55°F to 46°F, rarely falling below 34°F or exceeding 66°F.
4 SPOTS OPEN
TOUR COST: $2,350
7 DAYS/6 NIGHTS, TRANSPORT & ACCOMMODATION INCLUDED
GROUP SIZE: ONLY 6
Tour Price Includes
- Ground Transportation during the trip
- Transfer to the airport at Little Rock, AR or DFW at the end of the tour on 23 Oct, 2021
- In-Field Photography Instruction
Tour Price Excludes
- Flights to and from Marquette
- Entry Fees into National and State Parks
- Meals and snacks
Lodging for the workshop has been booked and a room will be assigned to you on registration. The cost of the lodging is included in the workshop fee.
On arrival in Dallas on Sat, 17 Oct, 2021, you will transfer to the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Irving DFW Airport North. You will be picked up at the hotel on Sunday morning at 8:00AM
Please make your own booking at the Holiday Inn at the link above.
Dress for the Weather
Personal Gear List
- Sunscreen, sunglasses, sun hat
- Layers for cooler mornings
- Waterproof Shell in case of rain
- Sturdy hiking shoes
- Rubber boots for accessing streams
Photo Equipment Checklist
- Sturdy tripod and ballhead
- Digital SLR or Mirrorless Camera Body
- Wide angle lens in the 16-35mm range
- Mid-range zoom lens in the range of 24-100mm
- Long telephoto lenses in the 100-600mm range. You will want a lens that is longer than 200mm for some of the locations we visit! A 100-400mm
- Circular polarizer filters and ND filters for your lenses. If you like shooting with grads, bring them along. A 6 or 10-stop ND filter will be useful for creating very long exposures.
- Backpack to carry your gear
- Extra batteries, memory cards, and cleaning supplies
- Laptop if you wish to backup your photos or follow along during the post-processing instruction.