West Summit Trail at Pinnacle Mountain State Park Renovation Work Has Begun with No Closures

Article follows the photos:
Pinnacle Mountain State Park
Pinnacle Mountain State Park
WEST SUMMIT TRAIL AT PINNACLE MOUNTAIN STATE PARK RENOVATION WORK HAS BEGUN WITH NO CLOSURES

All Trails in the Park Remain Open

(ROLAND, Ark.) To address the wear and erosion caused by the thousands upon thousands of footsteps by hikers who enjoy this trail experience each year, renovation work has begun on the three-fourths-mile West Summit Trail at Pinnacle Mountain State Park. This is one of two park trails that lead up to the summit of 1,011-foot Pinnacle Mountain. According to Park Superintendent Ron Salley, “Visitors will continue to access the top of the mountain using the West Summit Trail.” He said, “During some stages of the renovation, visitors will be directed up the emergency access road to meet up with the West Summit Trail higher on the mountain.” He noted that personnel from AmeriCorps and the Arkansas State Parks Trail Crew are conducting the renovation. It’s anticipated that the trail work will be completed by early winter. Salley emphasized, “All the trails in the park will remain open.”

The West Summit Trail is one of the most popular trails in the park. Salley continued,“Even park resources such as trails wear out, and trail renovation work such as this is an integral part of natural resource management.”

The trail crews will address problems including erosion caused by both hikers’ use and runoff. Since the movement of water causes erosion and exposes tripping hazards, work will to done to divert water off the trail. In addition, trail hazards will be corrected and work will be done to the trail’s route to encourage hikers not to stray off the trail.

Hikers who want to hike to the summit of Pinnacle Mountain can continue to take the West Summit or East Summit Trails. Both trails are considered strenuous rising over 700 feet in only three-fourths of a mile. Hikers attempting to reach the top of Pinnacle Mountain should be in good physical condition, wear proper footwear and always carry water. These are rugged trails.

The park offers a wide variety of other trails including the Base Trail which circles the entire mountain, Ouachita Trail, barrier-free Kingfisher Trail, Rocky Valley Trail, East Quarry Trail, and barrier-free Arkansas Trail within the environs of the Arkansas Arboretum. The park also includes two mountain bike trails: the seven-tenths-of-a-mile Rabbit Ridge Mountain Bike Trail and 7.4-mile Jackfork Mountain Bike Trail. Trail users are advised to plan their trips in advance as the trails throughout the park greatly vary in length and difficulty. For more information on trails in Arkansas State Parks please use the online trail search tool at http://www.arkansasstateparks.com/things-to-do/trails/

All other park areas will remain open including the West Summit Picnic Area and the Environmental Education Pond. The park visitor center which features an exhibit area and gift shop will also remain open. Interpretive programs will continue as scheduled, and canoe and kayak rentals will continue to be offered on the Little Maumelle River.

The West Summit Trail was originally constructed in the summer of 1977, one year prior to Pinnacle Mountain State Park’s dedication and official grand opening in 1978. This first trail ascending Pinnacle Mountain started in the current West Summit Picnic Area and was constructed by crews from the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC). The original 1977 trail followed approximately the same route as the current trail until about halfway up the mountain. In the early 1980s, the upper half of the trail was rerouted to where it is today.

Pinnacle Mountain State Park is in Pulaski County just west of Little Rock. It is a day-use park dedicated to environmental education, recreation and open space preservation. The park is one of the 52 state parks administered by the State Parks Division of the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. Information on Pinnacle Mountain State Park can be found at http://www.arkansasstateparks.com/pinnaclemountain/

For more information, contact: Ron Salley, Park Superintendent, Pinnacle Mountain State Park, 11901 Pinnacle Valley Road, Little Rock, AR 72223; phone: 501-868-5806; email: Ron.Salley@Arkansas.gov