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Ouachita Mountains Destination

By: Mountain Valley Spring

Mountain Valley Spring Water wants to encourage you to go out and experience some natural American goodness this season. As a company, we are dedicated to the great outdoors and there is no place we love more than The Ouachitas—our homeland and the place that brings you pure, premium spring water straight from the source. If you aren’t familiar with The Ouachitas, it’s a mountain range that spans from western Arkansas to southeastern Oklahoma. The mountains are also home to many natural wonders. Together with the Ozark Plateaus they comprise the U.S. Interior Highlands, which is one of the few mountain ranges between the Appalachians and Rockies. They’re home to abundant wildlife such as white-tailed deer, coyote and hundreds of elusive black bears. The Ouachita National Forest is one of the largest and oldest national forests in the Southern United States. It is a wonderful place to get in touch with nature, and experience the beauty of the great outdoors.

If you’re looking for a beautiful oasis to check out with family and friends, Jack Creek in Booneville, Arkansas makes for a wonderful day or weekend trip. This seasonal recreation site is full of activities, from fishing and hiking to camping and picnicking, and it’s the perfect spot to help you reconnect with nature.

Jack Creek was constructed in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC). The CCC was a major part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s mission, and was dedicated to providing jobs to aid in the conservation of natural lands and resources owned by federal, state and local governments. At Mountain Valley Spring Water we appreciate the progress that programs like this brought to outdoor preservation. Today, to continue to give back to the land that produces our water, we avidly support Friends of the Ouachitas (FoOT), see how you can get involved. FoOT was formed in 2003 to provide assistance for the maintenance, enhancement and use of all 223.5 miles of the Ouachita National Recreation Trail. As a company, we are continually committed to protecting the outdoors for future generations.

Jack Creek Andrew Ly Credit: Andrew Ly

The Jack Creek Recreation Area is open from April to November and is completely free to visit. It’s set adjacent to rock bluffs and flowing waters in a picturesque and peaceful setting. While it’s perfectly fine to come here and do absolutely nothing, it’s also a fun place to work up a sweat. For those who like to hike, there’s a short trail that climbs a couple of hundred feet to a recently restored rock overlook that offers a panoramic view of the valley. If you’re looking for something a bit longer and more challenging, there’s the Hole-In-The-Ground Mountain Hiking Trail and Sugar Creek Hiking Trail. Hole-In-The-Ground Trail extends approximately four miles in length. The Sugar Creek Hiking Trail extends approximately three miles, and connects Jack Creek to Knopper’s Ford Recreation Area. If you decide to set out, don’t forget to take along plenty of Mountain Valley Spring Water to stay hydrated, always follow trail markers and be mindful to never start hikes close to sunset to avoid hiking in the dark.

Mike Erskine Credit: Mike Erskine Autumn Mott Rodeheaver Credit: Autumn Mott Rodeheaver

For the campers among you, Jack Creek also offers a primitive campground at no cost. The recreation site is also outfitted with picnic tables and toilets. You can kick back with friends or family, go swimming or even take in a little stream fishing. It’s the perfect escape to recharge your batteries and take in the majestic nature of the area.

Evan Wise Credit: Evan Wise

Wondering how to get to Jack Creek? Take Arkansas Hwy. 23 south from Booneville, AR for two miles, turn left (east) on Arkansas Hwy. 116 for one mile, then go south at sign on paved County Road for four miles, then proceed one mile south on Forest Service Road 19, and turn left (heading east) on Forest Service Road 141 for one mile.

We hope you’ll enjoy visiting Jack Creek and The Ouachitas as much as we do, and don’t forget to tag us on social media in your outdoor adventures. Use #NaturalAmericanGoodness to share your stories, we can’t wait to see what you get up to.

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