Bear Creek Horse Trails

Jessieville, Arkansas

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1 Review
3 out of 5
The Bear Creek Trails comprise four loops of 12 to 14 miles each in the northeastern Ouachita Mountains. The trails total 45 miles over gravel roads, abandoned logging roads, and single-track. Riders who like scenic vistas will love the Bear Creek Horse Trails. Spring wildflowers blanket the bottomlands and sunny slopes early in the year, while autumn trips on Bear Creek awe you with unbelievable fall colors that paint the mountainsides in late October. This trail is located 7 miles northwest of Jessieville.

Bear Creek Horse Trails Professional Review and Guide

"The Bear Creek Trails comprise four loops of 12 to 14 miles each in the northeastern Ouachita Mountains. The trails total 45 miles over gravel roads, abandoned logging roads, and single-track. Riders who like scenic vistas will love the Bear Creek Horse Trails.

Spring wildflowers blanket the bottomlands and sunny slopes early in the year, while autumn trips on Bear Creek awe you with unbelievable fall colors that paint the mountainsides in late October. This trail is located 7 miles northwest of Jessieville."

Activity Type: Mountain Biking
Nearby City: Jessieville
Distance: 14
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Season: Spring and fall are the best seasons to ride here. With few stream crossings, winter riding can also be safe and enjoyable. Just don't get caught out in the dark on winter's short days. The long climbs on these loops could make hot, humid summer rides very difficult.
Local Contacts: Ouachita National Forest Jessieville Ranger District 501-984-5313
Local Maps: USGS Nimrod SW, Steve
Driving Directions: Directions to Bear Creek Horse Trails

Recent Trail Reviews

11/23/2007
0

If you are all about die hard single track and nothing else, avoid this place. If, on the other hand, you like a variety of trail types, including gravel fire road and double track, this may be your kind of place. Since all I had was a single day to experience Bear Creek, I rode from east to west and back. My total trip was about 36 miles, which took about (6) hours. Since it's hard for me to do an epic scale ride without a primary driving inspiration, I made the Powell Mountain fire tower my chosen destination. This worked well because the tower was about 1/2-way from my starting point at the Deckard Mountain Trail Head. I rode the trail as recommended, counterclockwise from east to west. This was done to avoid several beasty climbs on both the east and center loop sections. A secondary benefit was avoiding a long bumpy drive into the park on several long gravel roads. The down side, of course, is being tired and having no choice but to ride all the way back. Fortunately, if time or daylight is short, or fatigue has taken its toll, there is the alternative to ride FS-11 all the way back from Powell Tower. One design benefit built into Bear Creek trail system is it's multiple trail heads and stacked loops that can be ridden in a number of combinations. If I ever ride it again, my choice would be to start in the middle at the Horse Camp trail head and break the ride into two medium length days rather than one long one. Camping is allowed almost anywhere along the trail, so bring that gear if you consider that option. Besides experiencing the incredible ridge vistas of the surrounding mountains and valleys, another positive of riding in this wilderness area is the shear abundance of wild life. Along with seeing a few wild turkeys and elk, I even saw a black bear on the steep decent down the east loop to the gravel road. Michael S.



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May 2018