10 In Arkansas/ Hiking + The Outdoors/ Travel

Hiking The Ozarks – Pedestal Rocks Scenic Area

While living in SW Missouri, Matt and I have been making a point to get out and explore the Ozarks as much as possible. Pedestal Rocks Scenic Area is one of the places we’ve enjoyed. Pedestal Rocks is located near Sand Gap, Arkansas.

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What to Know:

⋙ You’ll see insane rock formations, views of the Boston Mountains, caves, natural bridge, bluffs, a wet-weather waterfall & more.

⋙ There are two hikes located here: Pedestal Rocks (2.4 miles) & King’s Bluff (1.8 miles).

⋙ There is a restroom & a picnic area here.

⋙ Dogs are allowed on this trail, but are required to be on a leash at all times. Please respect that here as there are some narrow ledges.

How to Get There:

King’s Bluff Trail:

 King’s Bluff is the shorter of the two hikes at 1.7 miles and though the path is well-worn it can be very overgrown on the sides around you (at least that was our experience in early fall) and there can be thorns. I would personally rate this trail as easy. This trail goes down a small short set of gradual switchbacks and then opens up to King’s Bluff. This is where the waterfall will be, if it’s flowing (if you’re looking over the bluff the waterfall would be coming over the bluff all the way to your right).  The view is pretty, but I don’t think it’s the best part of this hike. If you continue on past King’s Bluff you go back into the forest and then it starts to open up to more of the bluff line and you will start to see some funky rock formations and beautiful overlooks – this was my favorite portion of the hike. King’s Bluff definitely wins the award for views, but Pedestal Rocks was still my favorite of the two just because it’s so unique.

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The Beginning of the Trail

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Matt Standing on King’s Bluff

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Looking Out Over One of the Different Areas

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I Just Adore Rock Formations. The Power of Water will Never Cease to Amaze Me.

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What a View?! The Ozarks is a Truly Special Region.

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Matt and I Kept Saying ‘Doesn’t This Look Like North Carolina?!’

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True, True Beauty

Pedestal Rocks:

This 2.4 mile loop is my favorite of the two here, but I am also a massive lover of rock formations. (Not that I haven’t already mentioned that. Ha!). This trail is also one that I would rate as easy. We hopped of the trail and rounded the corner to find some funky formations similar to those we saw near King’s Bluff. However, once we continued further down the trail, the formations started to change. They turned into natural bridges and caves. Matt and I climbed in them, walked around them and just stood in awe of this beautiful place. We headed back up the hill towards the trailhead and on the way back we met three people who wanted to know if it was worth it to continue on (they came the opposite way on the trail) because they had already seen a natural bridge. We told them that it was amazing and were excited to see the next formation since it was cool enough for them to want to possibly turn back. Let me tell you, if you start with seeing the natural bridge in the middle of nowhere keep going because as cool as the natural bridge is it only gets cooler! Be sure to not miss a step of this trail.

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The Beginning of the Pedestal Rocks Trail.

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One of the Many Bizarre Formations. I Just Can’t Get Enough!

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One of the Overlooks.

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Down in the Cave Section! I Loved Crawling Through These and Looking Out of the “Cave Windows”.

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Matt Took this Photo of Me Exploring a Cave.

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Look at This Massive Natural Bridge! 

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I Think This Formation Looked a Bit Like a Creepy Easter Bunny.

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A Beautiful Bluff

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Another Overlook

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You Can See the Trail in the Right Side of This Photo – Notice That it Goes Over That Bluff? Then Look Down and See What Rock is Holding A Chunk of That Bluff Up?! So Crazy Cool!!!

UPDATE [9/13] – Matt and I were so excited to see Pedestal Rocks while everything is green and beautiful, but instead it took away from the bluffs and rock formations. Instead, we found that the plant life seemed to take away from the beauty of this place, so we would recommend going in the late fall, winter or early spring!

Pedestal Rocks Scenic Area is a hike that shouldn’t be excluded from an Ozarks adventure. The Ozarks is an extremely beautiful region that covers NW Arkansas & SW Missouri. In Arkansas it’s all about massive bluffs, mountains, rivers & more. In Missouri it’s lakes, springs, caves & more. The Ozarks as a whole is just full of treasures waiting to be explored – be sure to check back for more hikes in this beautiful region!

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10 Comments

  • Reply
    nycgingeronthego
    May 9, 2016 at 9:09 am

    I grew upon Missouri, but never really hiked in the area. What beautiful views! I never even knew this existed. I LOVE that cave!! Maybe this would be a good family adventure one day when I return!

    • Reply
      PaigeBrown
      May 11, 2016 at 10:51 pm

      What part of Missouri did you grow up in? I’m from Missouri too. It would be a great family trip especially since the trails are pretty easy. Cheers!

  • Reply
    thetravelpockets
    May 9, 2016 at 12:11 pm

    The views are just breathtaking. I really enjoyed the photos of the bizarre formations. Where I live in LA, the hikes don’t really have much trees or rock formations, so when I see hikes like this I get so jealous!

    • Reply
      PaigeBrown
      May 11, 2016 at 10:50 pm

      LA has its own charms though, I’m sure! Plus, you’re so close to Joshua Tree which is its own kind of funky! Thanks for reading!

  • Reply
    Lauren (@pgradpcards)
    May 9, 2016 at 12:31 pm

    I have never heard of this hike, despite being born in AR and living in it for several years! Thanks for bringing this to my attention – my boyfriend and I will likely hike this (also with Hawkbill Crag) soon!

    • Reply
      PaigeBrown
      May 11, 2016 at 10:49 pm

      I had no idea you were so close to me! I would love to meet up for a hike! My fiancé and I are going to Hemmed-in-Hollow on Sunday! Hawksbill Crag is definitely a must-see – I’ve been three times now. I’m sure you’ll love it! Thanks for reading.

  • Reply
    Vyjay Rao
    May 10, 2016 at 1:31 am

    The rock formations look awesome and seem to have a life of their own and look so intriguing, if they could speak, what stories would they tell? An awesome trail and your stunning pictures bring the place alive.

    • Reply
      PaigeBrown
      May 11, 2016 at 10:46 pm

      Thank you so much. I bet they would have loads of stories, you’re right! Thanks for reading!

  • Reply
    Danielle Des
    May 10, 2016 at 8:51 am

    You weren’t kidding – the rock formations really stand out! I also really liked the overlooks and the caves (my obsession)

    • Reply
      PaigeBrown
      May 11, 2016 at 10:45 pm

      If you’re obsessed with caves I have to ask what your favorite cave is! Thanks for reading!

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