Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas

A view of the sunset from Cameron Bluff Overlook in Mount Magazine State park in Arkansas.

Visiting the Cameron Bluff Overlook at sunset in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas is a great way to end a day.

Sometimes we take our neighbors for granted.   The state line of Arkansas is about four hours from my house, but I’ve visited that state just twice until this May when my husband and I and some friends went to Mount Magazine State Park.

I shouldn’t have waited so long!  It’s gorgeous.  Mount Magazine  is the highest point in the Arkansas with sweeping views of river valleys.  The weather was volatile while we were there with lots of fast-moving clouds, some thunderstorms and tornadoes to the south and west. The park’s Lodge overlooks the Petit Jean River Valley and Blue Mountain Lake.  From the balcony in our room, we could see the clouds sweeping past, and during a storm, lightning flashed in the clouds almost at eye level. I’ll let my photographs do the rest of the talking. I’ll also be posting about a day trip to Little Rock, where we visited the William J. Clinton Presidential Center and the Arkansas state capitol building, and also a post on Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville.

You can find great photographs, trail maps, wildlife and plants facts, lists of activities, lodging and camping details and other information at the Mount Magazine State Park Website Wildlife viewing is great in the park.  Many brochures with wildlife checklists and other information are available at the Lodge and at the park’s visitor center.

About the Arkansas State Butterfly — the Diana Fritillary.

About the Arkansas State Mammal — the Whitetail Deer.

From top left, clockwise are a chipmunk, white-tailed deer, zebra butterfly, Diana Fritillary Butterfly and the ruby-throated hummingbird.  I photographed these animals in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas in late May 2013.  The White-tailed  deer, the Arkansas state mammal, is feasting on a white oak leaf.  The Diana Fritillary Buttery is Arkansas' state butterfly.  This poor butterfly is very tattered, as is the Zebra butterfly, which is the state butterfly of Tennessee. It's a hard, hard life for butterflies.

From top left, clockwise are a chipmunk, white-tailed deer, zebra butterfly, Diana Fritillary Butterfly and the ruby-throated hummingbird. I photographed these animals in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas in late May 2013. The White-tailed deer, the Arkansas state mammal, is feasting on a white oak leaf. The Diana Fritillary Butterfly is the Arkansas’ state butterfly. This poor butterfly is very tattered, as is the Zebra butterfly, which is the state butterfly of Tennessee. It’s a hard, hard life for butterflies.

Here's a view from Bear Hollow Trail in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas.

Here’s a view from Bear Hollow Trail in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas.

Pink roses grow among the rocks along Bear Hollow Trail in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas.

Pink roses grow among the rocks along Bear Hollow Trail in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas.

These sassafras trees in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas are some of the tallest in the state.

These sassafras trees in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas are some of the tallest in the state.

This young sassafras tree stands beneath some of the tallest sassafras trees in Arkansas.  Sassafras extract from the roots was a primary ingredient in root beer.

This young sassafras tree stands beneath some of the tallest sassafras trees in Arkansas. Sassafras extract from the roots was a primary ingredient in root beer.

A model of Mount Magazine is on display in the Lodge.

A model of Mount Magazine is on display in the Lodge.

Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas truly is an island in the sky.

Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas truly is an island in the sky.

A section of the Lodge in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas.

A section of the Lodge in Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas.

We climbed to Signal Hill on Mount Magazine, the highest point in Arkansas.  It's surrounded by trees so there aren't any panoramic views from this spot.

We climbed to Signal Hill on Mount Magazine, the highest point in Arkansas. It’s surrounded by trees so there aren’t any panoramic views from this spot.

 This survey marker plaque on Signal Hill of Mount Magazine from the U.S. Department of Interior indicates the highest point in Arkansas (2,753 feet above sea level) and sits in a 400 square feet stone map of Arkansas.  The stone map was built to a scale of one foot equals 13 miles.  On the stone map, the survey marker is positioned on the location of Mount Magazine.

This survey marker plaque on Signal Hill of Mount Magazine from the U.S. Department of Interior indicates the highest point in Arkansas (2,753 feet above sea level) and sits in a 400 square feet stone map of Arkansas. The stone map was built to a scale of one foot equals 13 miles. On the stone map, the survey marker is positioned on the location of Mount Magazine.

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker birds made hundreds of holes in this sugar maple tree.  Sap oozes from the holes, attracting insects, which the sap-suckers eat. Very clever!  Settlers harvested sap from these trees to make maple syrup.  Forty gallons of sugar maple sap is needed to produce one gallon of syrup.

Yellow-Bellied Sapsucker birds made hundreds of holes in this sugar maple tree. Sap oozes from the holes, attracting insects, which the sap-suckers eat. Very clever! Settlers harvested sap from these trees to make maple syrup. Forty gallons of sugar maple sap is needed to produce one gallon of syrup.

There are many beautiful hiking trails on Mount magazine.

There are many beautiful hiking trails on Mount Magazine.

The dining room in the Lodge at Mount Magazine is beautiful with beautiful views.

The dining room in the Lodge at Mount Magazine is beautiful with beautiful views.

Here’s a video with many views of the Lodge at Mount Magazine.

Click on any thumbnail photo to see a full-size version in a new window.

8 Comments

Filed under Photography, Travel

8 responses to “Mount Magazine State Park in Arkansas

  1. Your nature photography is amazing… love that collage. I was trying to capture a butterfly with my camera but found it’s even harder to do than birds. They move so fast. BTW, what is that bird with an orange collar? Mt. Magazine State Park looks like an awesome place to explore.

    • Thanks, Arti. The bird is a ruby-throated hummingbird. I saw the hummingbird at the feeder, before I photographed it on the branch. The sunlight transformed his throat into a brilliant orange color. The caption on the collage explains each animal and butterfly, although the font size is so small! You can see all of the photos more clearly and in a larger size by clicking on the thumbnails at the bottom. I think the captions are easier to read, too.

  2. When we lived in New Orleans, Arkansas was one of our favorites places for camping trips. We haven’t been to Mt. Magazine, and on our next pass through, we’ll drop by. BTW, nice shot on the hummer. These rapid little devils are had to capture. ~James

    • There are nice camping spots at Mount Magazine. You’re right, Hummers are fast! I had a hard time photographing that hummingbird, even though it regularly perched on a tree next to a feeder at the visitor’s center. He was very camera shy, even though I used a telephoto lens and shot through the window glass from inside the center.

  3. arkansas is such a wonderful place to photograph

  4. I’ve heard that Arkansas is beautiful, and your photos prove that. That’s one state I haven’t made it to. Hopefully one day.

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