This afternoon, led by Al Gathright, 6 Traildogs (yes, spouses are Traildogs too!!!) hosted trail workers from the International Mountain Biking Association and the Texas Conservation Corps to a hamburger and brat supper at the new Friends of Lake Ouachita-sponsored pavilion at the entrance to the Tompkins Bend Campground, followed by a short tour of Lake Ouachita. We all tremendously appreciate the work these teams are doing along the Lake Ouachita Vista Trail – THANK YOU ALL!!!Click to read the full article
BE AWARE OF HUNTING ON THE TRAIL!
The Lake Ouachita Vista Trail traverses U.S. Forest lands that have long been popular hunting grounds in all seasons. All Trail users should be aware of these activities and not wear clothing that could be mistaken for wildlife. Bright colors and hunter orange eliminate most instances of mistaken identity.
BE AWARE IT'S HUNTING SEASON - WEAR ORANGE ON THE TRAIL!
We would like to remind everyone that modern gun deer season opens on November 9, 2019, and continues through December 1 in the Ouachita National Forest along the LOViT. Dogs are allowed to be used hunting for deer during this time. A second modern gun season is December 26-28. Note also these deer hunting dates: Archery - Sept. 28, 2019, through Feb. 29, 2020; Muzzleloader - Oct. 19-27 and Dec. 14-16; Youth modern gun hunt - Nov. 2-3, 2019, and Jan. 4-5, 2020. Be especially careful and be sure to wear orange if you decide to hike or bike on the Trail during these times. We don't want anyone to get hurt or to cause conflicts between Trail users and hunters.
PLEASE visit the following link for more information regarding hunting seasons in Arkansas https://www.agfc.com/en/hunting/ Be safe out there!!!.
Four Traildogs – Al, Mike, John, and Dan – met Friday, Jan. 8, 2016, to set two posts for future directional signs where the LOViT crosses Hickory Nut Mountain Road, and then to hike Section 4 east to the trailhead for Section 5 at USFS Road 47A. The goal of the hike was “recon” – to evaluate the shape of the trail segment for any problems that need to be added to the winter maintenance schedule. After placing the posts, the recon hike was mostly uneventful, which is a Good Thing! We were able to move three fallen trees off the trail, two of which needed a little prodding from a small hand saw. Also, we noted a couple of areas that are in need of water bars in order to deflect rainwater off the trail to prevent erosion. And, no recon hike is complete without carrying loppers and shears … Click to read the full article
It is winter and time to hit the Trail for a number of maintenance projects that are never fun during the heat of summer, so today, five Traildogs met at the trailhead at USFS Road 47A to place a number of new directional signs along LOViT’s Section 5 from FS47A east to Pipe Spring. This section of the LOViT both crisscrosses USFS 47, which runs between Hickory Nut Mountain Road to the west and Crystal Springs Road to the east, and also follows along USFS 47 at times before sinking back into the Ouachita National Forest. It’s easy to miss a turn. Overall, the day was beautiful, and, for the most part, the digging was not too difficult, although we did have to relocate a couple of times due to hitting a shelf of shale. Once a hole was dug, a post was set in concrete, leveled, and then the signs were … Click to read the full article
The 2015 LOViT Marathon was run December 5, and by all accounts, it was a successful event. Your LOViT Traildogs supported the event by working at aid stations at both the Joplin and Hickory Nut Mountain Trailheads. Click on the image below to view photographs of the runners who made it to the top of Hickory Nut Mountain, the turnaround point for this out-and-back marathon. Here are the race results: http://runarkansas.com/results/LOViT2015.htm. Also, a slide show with many more photos can be found here: http://runarkansas.com/slideshow/LOViT26_2015/slideshow.php. Finally, here’s the LOViT Marathon Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/LOViTmarathon/. What a great bunch of participants we enjoyed at this aid station. Great people, great event!Click to read the full article
Traildogs Al Gathright and Jerry Shields hit the trail today to do some trimming and to install two plaques on sponsored benches. We drove to the Brady Mountain Trailhead parking area for the 3/4 mile hike into the first bench, located on the banks of the small creek the Trail crosses. This bench was purchased by the Traildogs to be sponsored for Jeff Smith of the Hot Springs Sentinel Record, who was tragically killed in a car accident. Jeff had followed the development of the LOViT from the first day of construction until his untimely death. He wrote hundreds of articles about the Trail’s development and was instrumental in bringing the Trail’s existence into the public eye. We installed a brass plaque in honor of Jeff’s support. The location is a beautiful, secluded location and has a very nice view of the creek and the small waterfall just upstream from … Click to read the full article
On Wednesday, July 8, Traildogs Jerry Shields and Al Gathright placed two plaques on adjacent benches along LOViT’s elevated walkway, part of the Watchable Wildlife Trail Segment. The two bench plaques were donated in honor of Diann Gathright’s dad and her uncle. The benches are side-by-side on the fishing pier part of the raised walkway. It is appropriate to have the brothers together near the lake they loved. Here’s their story as told by Diann’s sister, Pam Howell: The Boys of the Lake by P.R. Howell If people didn’t know better, they would have sworn they were twins. They looked alike, talked alike, laughed alike, and possessed a kinship beyond being older and younger brother (one of two). They were friends. Their friendship was fostered – as anyone who had the good fortune to hear their boyhood stories – through a series of adventures and misadventures while growing up in … Click to read the full article
On a very hot Tuesday in June, Traildogs Al, Robert, and Dan took to the woods to clear any downed trees on Little Bear and Bear Mountains following the month of May’s severe storms and continuous rain. What we found was a trail that was in reasonably good shape but that was quite overgrown with vegetation in areas where the canopy is thin. In all, there were only about 10 trees that needed to be cut off the trail. However, there are areas where the briars are getting a good foothold and needed to be trimmed back. We were fortunate to have with us a pair of Stihl weed eaters with scythe attachments that made short work of clearing weeds in several areas. All in all, it was another great day to be on the Trail, despite the hard work and hot weather!Click to read the full article
We’re happy to announce that there is a set of new Trail maps available for download. You can find these links at the bottom of The Big Picture page. Files are in PDF format and include a single PDF document containing the LOViT East and LOViT West maps, along with a set of segment maps. All maps are relatively high resolution and could be printed on up to 11″x17″ paper. We know of a few changes we need to make, and there are a couple of benches missing from the segment maps, but if you find anything we should know about, please drop us an email or contact us through our Facebook page. Have fun, and be safe on the Trail.Click to read the full article
Saturday November 8th was a perfect fall day on Hickory Nut Mountain as six Traildogs met at the Trailhead for some trail maintenance. We had four certified sawyers, myself, Jay Marsh, Dan Watson, and Al Gathright, along with Chuck Dumas with his trusty weed trimmer, and Mike Curran with his historic one man four foot hand saw. Our first order of business was to install the new trailhead sign furnished by the US Forest Service. It took a bit of digging in the stone-infested ground, but we finally concreted in the 6 X 6 post and sign just to the left of the Trailhead map sign. We also cleared all the downed trees and limb debris from the campground located adjacent to the Trailhead. There were two overnight campers in the campground, but the tents’ inhabitants were out taking advantage of the perfect fall weather to enjoy the Trail . … Click to read the full article
One perennial mud hole gone from the trail! After celebrating with the Ouachita Mountain Hikers on Saturday, Oct. 25, I met members of the Boy Scout Troop 262 out of Little Rock at the Tompkins Bend Trailhead parking area. Six Scouts, their troop leader, and several parents joined in to assist Bryan Wornock complete his Eagle rank project of building a 12′ foot bridge about a 3/4 mile east of Shangri-La Road. The team started to work around noon and finished at 5:00 pm, with the new bridge completed and ready for use. Bryan utilized the existing design of our other small bridges to construct the bridge over an area know to bikers and the “Slick Spot” where you can easily take a spill if not careful. Hikers refer to the spot as the “Mud Hole”! We really appreciate the Scouts supporting the Trail! They exemplify the best of young … Click to read the full article