Magnolia Falls, Upper Buffalo Wilderness, Ozark National Forest

 Magnolia Falls, Upper Buffalo Wilderness, Ozark National Forest

 Magnolia Falls, Upper Buffalo Wilderness, Ozark National Forest

I spent New Years at a cabin above Ponca with some great friends. New Year's Day the crew wanted to go on a leisurely hike in the area, but also to a spot that wouldn't be flooded with people. We chose to head out to Magnolia Falls. This area is becoming a favorite "go to" of mine. This wild and rugged little hollow has a magical quality about it and offers ample oppurtuny for exploration, with three other major falls within just a couple miles, one just a few hundred feet down stream (I'll cover these falls in later posts). The falls are located south of Boxley in an area of the Upper Buffalo Wilderness that overlaps with the Ozark National Forest in southwest Newton County.  

Directions: head on Highway 21 past  Mossville about 2.5 miles south of the Mossville Church (or 1.8 miles north of Edwards Junction), take Forest Road 1462/ Country Road 9050 on the right (nice gravel road which I would approve for nearly any vehicle). Follow this road for about .3 miles to a pull-off area for parking. There is a “Wilderness Access" sign on the left side of the road. Park here along the side of the road, and enter the trailhead to your right.

The trail: begins on an old jeep road. Expect to cross a couple down trees to stop vehicles to drive in and at least a mud hole or two. Shortly after starting you'll come across a trailhead register on your right, then a creek crossing, and after the trail will split. At the split take the spur on your left.

Shortly after the turn an old stone wall begins to line the trail on your right. This wall must have been built by early settlers in the Upper Buffalo Wilderness and it's a remarkable structure. As the wall begins to merge with some interesting rock formations the trail begins to descend slightly and then crosses another little creek. Turn left at the little creek and follow this trail and the creek down into the grotto of Magnolia Falls.

Denver in front of Magnolia Falls, sporting the Rock Monkey Outfitters 30 liter drybag

Denver in front of Magnolia Falls, sporting the Rock Monkey Outfitters 30 liter drybag

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Height: 26'

GPS: N35 51.923, W93 23.904

USGS Quad: Fallsville

Distance: 1.1 miles One-Way

Difficulty: Moderate Hike/Bushwack

Location: Ozark National Forest

Ranger District: Big Piney

Sub-Location: Upper Buffalo Wilderness

Region: Arkansas Ozarks & Boston Mountains

Caney Mountain Conservation Area

Caney Mountain Conservation Area is in Ozark County, five miles north of Gainsville.
This 7,899-acre area is characterized by unusual geology, including the roughest parts of a precipitous range of hills. These hills are a remnant of an old elevated plateau that has been dissected by numerous feeder streams.

The Devil's Backbone Wilderness

The Devils Backbone Wilderness is one of eight wilderness areas protected and preserved in the U.S. State of Missouri. The United States Congress designated the wilderness area in 1980, and it now has a total of 6,595 acres. Devil's Backbone is located within the Willow Springs section of the Ava-Cassville-Willow Springs Ranger District, of the Mark Twain National Forest, near Willow Springs, Missouri. It was named for a prominent ridge down the center of the area.

Hughes Mountain Natural Area

Hughes Mountain and the Hughes Mountain State Natural Area are located in southern Washington County, Missouri just south of the Big River and Highway M on Cedar Creek Road in theSt. Francois Mountains range of The Ozarks. The mountain reaches an elevation of just over 1,200 feet, rising 430 feet above the Big River. The Hughes Mountain Natural Area of the Missouri Department of Conservationencompasses 462 acres of the mountain, including the rhyolite glade at its top.

The Irish Wilderness

The Irish Wilderness is a 16,227-acre wilderness area in the U.S. State of Missouri. The U.S. Congress designated it a wilderness in 1984. The Irish Wilderness is located within the Eleven Point Ranger District of the Mark Twain National Forest, 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Alton, Missouri. It was named after an Irish CatholicPriest, John Joseph Hogan, founded a settlement of about forty Irish families here starting in 1858; the settlement was wiped out during the American Civil War and has remained a wilderness ever since. The Irish Wilderness is one of eight wilderness areas protected and preserved in Missouri.

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City Rock Bluff

Took an overdue trip with Josh to one of my favorite local spots, City Rock Bluff, Near Calico Rock, Arkansas. We were greeted to some beautiful fog hanging around the White River.

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2.4 miles of scenic views, farmland, and cedar rock glades on Culp Road.

My two feet, two hundred feet above the White River

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Falling Water Falls, Ozark National Forest

Height: 10'

GPS: N35 43.317, W 92 56.964

USGS Quad: Smyrna

Distance: View from road

Difficulty: Easy

Location: Ozark National Forest

Ranger District: Big Piney

Region: Arkansas Ozarks & Boston Mountains