Monday, April 20, 2015


If you like the natural things of our natural state of Arkansas, check out the possibilities of spending the night immersed in the beauty of nature at Longbow Resort, located in the vicinity of Mountain View, Arkansas  ( ).  Each of the four rental properties is a creative work of art nestled into the woods and rock canyons of the Arkansas Ozarks.
The cabins are available for rent throughout the year, and any time of year would bring its own unique landscapes.  However, I had the opportunity to visit when the native dogwood trees were blooming, and their presence is always a welcome harbinger of springtime in the Ozarks!

The cabins are described as secluded, because there are no highway signs announcing their presence.  Rather, the guest drives into the residential driveway of the owners of the large estate.  This photo shows the view from the front porch of the owners, looking out onto the highway, bordered by a white fence.

Guests check in here at the front door of the owner's home.

The four rental cabins are all accessed via a well-maintained dirt road.  Although a four-wheel drive vehicle is not required, it is recommended that guests have a vehicle with a high center clearance. 

  Even though I was driving a 4-wheel drive vehicle, we chose to tour around on the Kawasaki "Mule" shown in this photo, because it was a beautiful day, and added to the adventure!
On the way to look at the first cabin, we passed by this huge pond.  It not only serves as a water source for the cattle grazing in the fields, but also attracts wildlife such as bald eagles, herons, wild turkeys, turtles, frogs, and a variety of fish.

Shortly after passing the pond, the visitor will see this sign that points to the road you need to take to reach the various cabins.  The names of the cabins come from the name of various types of archery-related terminology.

All the cabins have outdoor living spaces equipped with fire pits, in addition to the indoor cooking areas.

Each cabin is uniquely designed to make the most of the rugged cliffs, boulders, and mountainside where it is located.

The structures seem to blend effortlessly with their surroundings.

But once inside, the visitor sees that a HUGE amount of effort and attention to detail has gone into every design aspect.

This photo shows Ben Pearson, who along with his family, owns and manages Longbow Resort.  If the name sounds familiar, it is because his father, Ben Pearson, Sr., is known as the "Father of Modern Archery", and is a charter inductee into the Archery Hall of Fame.  The senior Pearson saw an ad for this property in the Wall Street Journal in the 1960's, and purchased it.   His legacy is apparent in all the cabins, with numerous displays of equipment his company manufactured, as well as framed print articles about his awards and success.

It is easy to see that this creative talent has been passed on to his son and grandson, as much of the furniture, decor, stone work, and structural design has been accomplished by work they did themselves.  I took this photo in the second story loft of one of the cabins that is literally "built on a rock"!  Ben is walking beside a bench they built from wood harvested nearby.

There are several water features around the estate, and this bubbling stream is located near the Longbow Cabin.

The wood structure seen in this photograph shows the pedestrian bridge that crosses the stream, in order to access the Bushmaster Cabin.

This photo shows a close-up view of the bridge, with the deck of the Bushmaster cabin visible in the upper right hand corner.

The Bushmaster Cabin is literally built on top of the cascading creek, and offers a year-round gorgeous setting.

It seemed to me that any of these four locations would be a WONDERFUL place to escape and rest from the hectic, fast-paced, high-tech world that many people experience on a 24/7 basis these days.  For that reason, I am using this image as a visual aid to help me learn one of my First Place 4 Health ( ) memory verses that says, "Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls."  These words of Jesus are found in Matthew 11:29.  If ever there was a vision of a place to find rest for your soul, this is it!

If sitting beside a tranquil pool of water in the woods, is more your idea of rest, that is also an option at the Longbow Resort!

Likewise, if you want to spend some time indoors while at the Longbow Resort, table games and reading material are available.  And each cabin has a Gideon Bible available.

The 30 feet high Longbow Falls was going strong when I visited, and makes it easy to see why this unique location has been written about in so many publications, and photographed/videotaped for numerous depictions of the Arkansas Ozarks!  You can see all their accolades and published articles listed on their website.  I would fully agree with the comment from the Southern Living magazine article that named the Longbow Resort as "the most beautiful spot this side of Eden"!  If you would like to experience it, you can phone the Ben Pearson family at 870-948-2362, or visit their website at  .  I guarantee, this place will give you "MILES OF SMILES"!  Tricia

Addendum:  I recently

had the opportunity to visit the Archery Hall of Fame, at the original Bass Pro Shop, in Springfield, Missouri.  I have an even greater appreciation for the famous archer, Ben Pearson, after seeing the exhibit they have on his life, as well as the continuous videos telling about his adventures.  Be sure to check out this museum whenever you go to Missouri's Most Visited Tourist Attraction---the "Granddaddy of all the Bass Pro Shops"!  More information at  .  Miles of smiles!  Tricia

Thursday, April 16, 2015


The motto for Arkansas is "The Natural State", so a photo of hikers under a "Natural Bridge" in Arkansas' first state park seems like an appropriate beginning to this blog post.  The setting is along the Seven Hollows Trail at Petit Jean State Park ( ) near Morrilton, Arkansas.

About two dozen members of the "Women Hiking the Ozarks" (W.H.O.) group made their way from all over north central Arkansas to gather at Petit Jean State Park for four days in April, to explore the park, get some exercise, enjoy some food, and have some fun fellowship!  As is the case before every hike, the ladies "circle up" to count off, say their name, and what town they live in.  If all goes well, we have the same number of ladies at the end of the hike, as we had at the beginning!

This photo shows one of the three members of our group who used the Petit Jean outing as a "test run" for the backpacker gear they would be carrying for their through-hike of the Appalachian Trail, a few weeks later.  The rest of us just carried our small day packs and hiking sticks.

On our first evening in the park, we gathered after our hike for a "sunset ceremony" on the edge of the bluff behind Mather Lodge.  Another guest at the lodge was kind enough to take about ten different cameras from us, and take a group photo, as the sun disappeared behind the mountain. 

Some of the ladies stayed in the comfortable and modern cabins that line the bluff above Cedar Canyon.  Others stayed in Mather Lodge, or in their RV in the campground.

This unique geological feature is called Rock House Cave.  I was especially eager to see it in person, because I had seen a photograph from the 1800's that showed a huge crowd of people assembled in this cave for an Easter Sunrise Service.  (You can see that photo in my blog archives with the date of February 2, 2014).

This marker is a reminder that many of the Petit Jean State Park structures were built by the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) during the Great Depression.  I am very thankful for the work they did, which not only helped support them and their families, but also built a solid infrastructure for our nation's park system. 

A park ranger took this photo of me in front of the pioneer cabin.  The cabin marks the trailhead for the Cedar Creek Trail, which is a glorious place to take a walk into nature.  So it is fitting that the cabin was originally built in 1845, by a man named "Walker"!  The carpenter was John Walker, who was one of the first known settlers on Petit Jean Mountain.

This photo shows Davies Bridge, which is named after a family that has a prominent place in the history of Petit Jean State Park.  (See February 2, 2014, article I published that tells more information about the bridge).

The first photo of this blog showed a natural rock bridge, the above photo showed the man-made stone Davies Bridge, and this photo shows me peeking out from under a "tree-trunk" bridge!

This photo shows the Palisades Overlook, that is easily accessible by car. 

We often hear the words "log on" to tell us how to get to a particular Internet site.  However, the phrase "log on" takes on a whole different meaning when you try to get 25 women to straddle a giant log for a group photo!  The location is The Grotto, a side hike of the Seven Hollows Trail.  It is definitely worth the extra effort to get there, and was where our group stopped for their lunch break during the lengthy Seven Hollows Trail excursion. 

I am using this photo of our leader Amy as she is presenting our devotional early Sunday morning, in front of Mather Lodge, as the visual aid for one of my First Place 4 Health ( ) memory verses.  It says, "So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature."  (Galatians 5:16)  It seems to me that sharing God's Spirit of love out in "Mother Nature", will help minimize my "sinful nature"!

When you think of being in a state park, you think of gathering around a campfire, and we were fortunate to be able to do that at the spot where one of our members was staying in the campground.  We had the opportunity to make S'Mores, which I have never passed up!

You may wonder how 25 busy women could ever clear four days in their calendars to gather in one place for the purpose of hiking!  The lady who "got the ball rolling", or I should say "got the rock rolling" for such an endeavor is pictured in this photo.  Roxy and a few other ladies were chatting about how cool it would be if our hiking group could do an overnight outing.  So Roxy put that question on her Facebook page, and got a tsunami of responses from other WHO members who said YES YES YES!  One night turned into three nights and four days of FUN FUN FUN!!!  So I would encourage folks to make the effort to get outside and explore---no matter where you live!!  If you cannot find a group to hike with, start up your own group!  It will give you "MILES OF SMILES"!!  Tricia