Covering more than 60,000 square acres and spreading across Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Kansas, the Ozarks offer endless beauty and solitude for outdoor enthusiasts. Hikes across long ridgetops, into quiet valleys and cool hollows, and through rocky creeks give visitors a chance to view the unique natural and cultural history of the area. Springs, caves, sinkholes, bluffs, glades, hardwood forests, clear-flowing streams, waterfalls, and lakes are the natural gems of the Ozarks.
Given the vastness of this region, selecting a hike can be overwhelming. In their book, Hiking Ozarks: A Guide to the Area’s Greatest Hiking Adventures, JD Tanner and Emily Ressler-Tanner detail forty of the what they consider the very best hiking trails throughout the region. And here, below, they share with us their five favorite Ozark trails.
“When you grab an edge at Stoney, you’re touching a hold Royal Robbins caressed. When you step on a hold, you could be adding your boot scum to that of Bob Kamps. When you peel off Boulder 1 and land in the dirt, you’re thumping where Yvon Chouinard did.”—John Sherman, Stone Crusade
Stoney Point Park, tucked into the corner of Topanga Canyon Blvd and the 118 freeway in Chatsworth, is Los Angeles' oldest outdoor climbing gym, and as the country's first "bouldering area," its sandstone walls and boulders have been used by climbers for over 80 years.
At Stoney Point it is easy to follow in the footsteps of such American rock climbing legends as Royal Robbins, Ron Kauk, John Long, Lynn Hill, Yvon Chouinard, John Bachar, Michael Reardon, and Bob Kamps. Some of these luminaries went on to spearhead groundbreaking first ascents of dream climbs, such as the Salathé and North America walls on El Capitan into reality.
Here is my top five list of boulders left behind by some of the greatest heroes of our sport.
We asked this question of the climbers featured in Women Who Dare, a visually-stunning profile of twenty of America’s most inspiring female climbers, including legendary great Lynn Hill and current top-ranked female outdoor sport climber Sasha DiGiulian. Yosemite, Patagonia, Zion National Park, Hueco Tanks, Indian Creek, Rifle Mountain Park, the New, and the Red are places that the women mention again and again. They think nothing of driving from Washington, D.C., to Kentucky’s Red River Gorge for a weekend. Or of bouncing around from location to location, all while living out of their car, like Kate Rutherford. So these women, who seemingly have climbed everywhere, have their pick of the world’s best climbing locations… which ones are their favorites? Read on to find out:
What happens when you link a National Scenic Trail and an Estuary of National Significance? You create a gateway to hiking adventure.
Chittenden Park, a Guilford town park situated on the shore of the Long Island Sound, is the official terminus or “gateway” to the New England Trail (NET). If you visit, you’ll notice that the shoreline at Chittenden offers a totally different atmosphere from what visitors experience at other, more-developed beaches on the sound. And this makes the park a special place to begin or end a journey on the NET.
In the summer of 2001, Joe Marshall, a resident of Guilford, Conn., went to visit his daughter and her family in Rhode Island, where his grandchildren often enjoyed riding their bikes on a trail built along a defunct rail line. He was struck with an idea: Joe’s beloved Connecticut shoreline had a lot to offer, but there was something missing. With area roads becoming increasingly dangerous for biking, walking, and running, why didn’t a trail like this exist in our community?
After testing the concept with friends, Joe and a small group banded together and presented a plan to local officials and the residents of four towns along the shore (Madison, Guilford, Branford, and East Haven). The goal? To build a 25-mile trail for walkers, runners, and cyclists extending from Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison to Lighthouse Point Park in New Haven.