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STATE PARKS: Cossatot River State Park

Welcome to Cossatot....

Cossatot River State Park includes 12.5 miles of spectacular floating for experienced kayakers, rafters and canoers. It is renowned as the best whitewater float stream in mid-America and is on the National Park Service's list of National Wild and Scenic Rivers, making it a whitewater rafting destination.

The Cossatot is NOT for beginners. Life jackets are mandatory and it is HIGHLY recommended that you wear a helmet and don't float alone. Peak season for whitewater paddlers is late winter and early spring depending on rainfall.

Cossatot River State Park and Natural Area is located about 45 minutes south of Mena, 40 minutes north of DeQueen or about an hour west of Glenwood...this one is kind of in the middle of nowhere, but it's well worth the trip!!

The 5,483 acre park is managed jointly by the Arkansas State Parks and the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission. The natural area supports at least two indigenous fish species found only in the southern Ouachitas...the leopard darter and the Ouachita Mountain shiner. Check out the Visitor's Center to learn more about all the animals and plants in the area! It includes a wildlife observation room, an exhibit gallery and a hands-on laboratory. You can also pick up Arkansas and Cossatot River gifts at the gift shop! And we can't forget the playground!!

Now, let's talk about trails!

The River Trail starts here and travels 14 miles of rugged river corridor.

The Harris Creek Trail is 3 miles and includes a gorgeous river overlook

There's also a half mile Waterleaf Interpretive Trail by the visitor's center and the 3 quarter mile Brushy Creek Interpretive Trail

A 14 mile logging road extends from highway 278 to highway 246 and leads to access points along the river at Sand Bar Bridge and Ed Banks Bridge. Follow the signs for Cossatot Falls and climb over boulders about a quarter mile to get downriver to the falls. Primitive camping is available and you can also reserve the River Ridge Group Camping area. Enjoy a picnic by the river or cool off in the water at the Brushy Creek Day Use area. You can also take a short walk over the pedestrian bridge to experience beautiful views of the Cossatot.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this look into Cossatot River State Park and we encourage you to get out and experience The Natural State! For more information on the park, visit

And make sure you follow Arkie Travels on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube for more Arkansas adventures.

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