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Cove Lake Trail / Mt Magazine Trail, AR

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Difficulty 3 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance One Way 9.5 miles
Trailhead Elevation 2,579 feet
Elevation Gain -1,500 feet
Avg Time One Way 5 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 12
Interest Seasonal Creek
Backpack Yes & Connecting
Post the 1st photoset!
author avatar Guides 253
Routes 0
Photos 6,930
Trips 2,467 map ( 21,513 miles )
Age 72 Male Gender
Location Cloudcroft, NM
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred Apr, Oct, May, Mar → Early
Seasons   ALL
Sun  5:23am - 7:18pm
0 Alternative

Hmmm... we gotta go back up this?
by imike

Cove Lake Trail, also called Mount Magazine Trail, drops over 1500' from the ridges of Mount Magazine down to the Cove lake basin, passing briefly through and out of the state park, then proceeding down and across the Ozark National Forest where camping is allowed.

Starting in the Cameron Bluff Campground, most of the trail is in the Ozark National Forest with only half of a mile in the state park boundaries. It can be hiked in a full day but is best enjoyed at a slower pace and is excellent for beginning backpackers. Explore stands of virgin hardwoods. Watch for white-tailed deer and turkey. Hunting is allowed in the national forest so be aware of the seasons and wear bright colored clothing. Additional trails circle the lake, and the Forest Service Recreation Area at Cove Lake has camping, picnicking, and swimming.

If desiring a bit of backpacking, or a more demanding day hike, this trail may be your best choice on Magazine Mountain. It can be nice to start the hike over at the Ranger Station/Visitor Center, adding that 2.7 miles to the distance, along with those great cliff overviews of the valley you are about to descend into.

Since this hike begins at the Cameron Bluff Campgrounds, you may want to take advantages of the facilities there:

The Cameron Bluff Campground offers 18 campsites (including Class AAA and Class AA including Tent rates). Each site has electric, water, and sewer hookups with a large tent pad, picnic table, upright and ground grill, light pole, and a spacious camping area.

All sites offer 30 amp electric services except for sites #3 and #5, which are supplied with 50 amp service. Site #7 is a barrier-free ADA campsite. Paved parking areas range from 47 to 75 feet in length and are generally very level. Most of the sites will allow for awnings and pull-outs on each side of the camping unit. The new bathhouse open throughout the year in the campground offers hot showers and flush toilets.

The campground is located in a wooded area north of the highpoint on Signal Hill, the tallest point in Arkansas. Camping here is especially popular during summer because of the mountain's cooler temperatures that are usually 10 degrees cooler than in the valleys below. Another advantage to camping on the mountain is that mosquitoes are usually non-existent.

When the campground is full, campers can choose from two overflow camping areas at the Brown Springs picnic area and the horse camp.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2010-03-26 imike

    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Paris, Arkansas, follow 109 to 309, then take 309 up and into Magazine Mountain State Park. Just past the Ranger Station/Visitor Center, turn right, exiting 309. Turn right again at the next intersection and follow this road to the Cameron Bluff Campground (on your right) across from the trailhead for Signal Hill.
    page created by imike on Mar 26 2010 3:32 pm
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
    Avoid Heat Illness - stay cool

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