Due to a flood death incident last year most of the Forest Service Campground
in the Mena/Oden area are closed pending a safety study.
There are several private campgrounds in the area that can provide for you tenting or RV camping.
(Go to www.ouachitarv.com for information about resources in the Ouachita Mountains that provide for RV or tent camping. Also most of the forest is open to camping. Just look for open areas, don't obstruct roads, and clean up after you leave.
When the campgrounds reopen we will post it here.
The following resources provide Lodging, Camping and Cabins Resources available in the area.
Mountain Harbor Resort
Includes one or two night’s lodging in a spacious, casual luxury two-bedroom condo with two bedrooms/two bathrooms, kitchen and living room/private deck and charcoal grill/beautiful forest view - Includes $50 spa credit to Turtle Cove Spa, Lake Ouachita’s premiere wellness facility offering an array of treatments, therapies, massages, and experiences – they will have just what competitors need to recover from the race!
-$199 (plus tax, please) for one night’s stay
-$350 (plus tax, please) for two night’s stay
Call 870-867-2191 to reserve your room now,
or visit www.mountainharborresort.com
Riverview Cabins and Canoes
Mena, Arkansas Lodging
Mena/Polk County Chamber of Commerce
Ouachita RV Parks
Ouachita River Haven Resort
Highway 71 Fishing Village
We have been informed that there are 2 RV hookup sites available in the Oden/Pencil Bluff area:
Turtle Island RV Park (479) 326 4170
The other one is the parking lot of the church across the highway from the Oden School. The phone # for that is (870) 326-4707
These are both very close to the Oden School!
The Oden School District has decided to offer another service to Ouachita Challenge participants. If you arrive in the Oden area without a motel reservation or other facilities, the gym at the school will be available for sleeping space for a small donation ($3 or so). All proceeds from this will go directly to the Oden athletic fund (Go Timberwolves!!).
The gym will be open Friday and Saturday from early evening until 7 a.m. Please respect others in the gym and not arrive too late at night. You will need a sleeping bag, pad, and good humor.
The gym will also be open several hours for showers after each day's event! Again, a small donation ($3 or so) will be requested and users will need their own towels, soap, etc.
Other things to see and do:
If you have not gotten enough riding in after the Challenge check out some of the other local trails on Ouachita Mountain Bike Adventures
Blakely Mountain Dam, which impounds water forming Lake Ouachita, is a feature of a comprehensive plan for the Ouachita River Basin being administered by the U.S. Army Engineers, under the direction of the Chief of Engineers and the Secretary of the Army. The objectives of the plan are flood control, navigation, recreation, and the production of hydroelectric power.
Talimena Scenic Byway
This national Forest Scenic Byway winding 54 miles from Mena to Talihina, Oklahoma, offers breathtaking panoramas of the surrounding countryside from peaks of nearly 3,000 feet.
Queen Wilhelmina State Park
Perched atop Rich Mountain nearly 3,000 feet above sea level sits Queen Wilhelmina Lodge. With its breath-taking panoramic view, it came to be known as the "Castle in the Sky". The lodge offers 36 guest rooms plus two "Queens Rooms" with wood burning fireplaces, a meeting room which accommodates 50 persons and a restaurant. The Park has camping, miniature railroad, miniature golf, petting zoo, and hiking trails. The park is located 12 miles west of Mena on hwy 88.
Wolf Pen Gap ATV Trails
The 50 mile trail is the first formal trail system specifically for four wheelers and dirt bikes in the Ouachita National Forest.
A 10 acre community park listed on the Register of Historic Places. The park offers picnic areas with covered pavilions, a playground, basketball court, spring fed ponds with picturesque rock bridges and a 1851 log cabin - the first homestead built by William Shelton in the area which now comprises Mena.
Lum and Abner Museum and Jot 'Em Down Store
Pine Ridge is only slightly smaller now than it was in the early 1900's when it was called Waters, the site of a post office, sawmill, general store, grist mill, blacksmith shop, and the other services necessary to a farm community. Out of this community came the inspiration for one of the most popular radio shows "Lum and Abner". Chester "Chet" Lauck (Lum Edwards) and Norris "Tuffy" Goff (Abner Peabody) grew up together in Mena, and were the creators, actors, writers, sound effects men, directors and the life of the "Lum and Abner" program which greeted its radio audience for nearly 25 years. The stores that were so busy on the program are still busy today housing the "Lum and Abner Museum" and the "Jot 'Em Down Store" which holds the souvenir and gift shop, antiques, crafts and continues to offer "Lum and Abner" programs. Open March 1 thru November 1, Tuesday thru Saturday, 9-5, Sunday 12-5. Located on Hwy 88 in Pine Ridge.
Ouachita Little Theatre
The Ouachita Little Theatre is a community theatre located in the historic downtown Mena. All the actors, actresses, and behind the stage personnel involved in the OLT productions are volunteers who contribute many hours to producing the finest quality theatre possible.
Shady Lake Recreation Area
Near Mena this 25 acre lake is the centerpiece of the playground in the Ouachita Mountains. There's a beach, fishing, swimming, picnic and camping sites, a boat and fishing dock, hiking trails and an amphitheater.
Cossatot River State Park Natural Area
One of the most rugged and spectacular river corridors in the nation's midsection. The park encompasses more than 4,200 acres and facilities include picnic sites, a nature trail, solar powered restrooms and a pedestrian walkway. The river features Class III, IV, and V rapids - the Cossatot River, Indian name for "skull crusher" is not for beginners. Located off Hwy 71 on 246, south of Mena.
Ouachita National Forest Ranger Station
The ranger station is located on Hwy 71 just as your entering Mena from the east.
The ranger station has souvenir's and maps, they are also a wealth of information for any trails in the Ouachita National Forest.
Ouachita National Forest Rich Mountain Visitor Center
The Visitor Center is located on Hwy 88 just north of Mena heading up Rich Mountain. The Visitor Center has souvenir's and maps as well. There is also a paved walking trail as well as restrooms. The Visitor Center is the center point of the Earthquake Ridge Trail Complex
Mena Train Depot and Museum
The old train depot located in downtown Mena houses the Mena historic museum as well as the Chamber of Commerce.
Wegner Crystal Mines
Mena has many places to shop for gifts, arts and crafts, antiques and souvenir's.
For more information contact the Mena Chamber of Commerce:
For more things to see and do in Mena visit the Mena web site at: www.gomenaarkansas.com