Petit Jean – Cedar Falls

It’s been awhile, about four years, since I’ve hiked the Cedar Falls Trail at Petit Jean State Park.  Kurt enjoys photographing it in the winter, and in 2013, he got this amazing shot with Sabrina.

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He took Austin in 2014 after a winter storm.

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Noted as the most popular trail in the park, it is a little over two miles in length and is rated as strenuous because the first half mile consists of about two hundred steps descending into the canyon.

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This is a down and back trail, so, once you hike down, you inevitably have to hike back up.  That’s the strenuous aspect of the trail.

I have been on the trail many times, and have seen many people there:  some in shape and some not in shape.  People in the latter category simply take their time and stop when necessary because the pleasure of seeing this absolutely gorgeous area outweighs the pain of getting there.

What’s great about this trail are the many enjoyable features along the way, such as a beautiful rock wall built by the CCC.

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Interesting rocks to climb…..

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..to jump over

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..or just to enjoy!

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Not too far from the foot of the steps is a tree that has fallen, creating a bridge.

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And speaking of bridges, the trail forks right past this bridge.  To view the falls, go right!

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The trail then follows Cedar Creek, which is fed by the falls.  There is a posted sign that says “No Swimming”, however, Kurt’s aunt told me a story about swimming in the creek.  After her high school graduation ceremony in the 50’s, her class celebrated with a “pool party” at Cedar Creek.

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The creek leads to one of the largest waterfalls in the Natural State.
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There are many rocks around the falls area.  My kids always enjoy exploring the area.  A favorite activity is to hike behind the waterfall.  This is fairly easy to do in the summer months, when there is little water.  The rocks get pretty slick when the water is really flowing, so use caution during that time.

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There are great places behind the falls to perch and enjoy the setting.

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It’s been a fairly rainy May in Arkansas.  That means Cedar Falls should be gorgeous.  Four years has been long enough, so back on my Arkansas Bucket List it goes!

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