Benefield Loop Trails

Mount Magazine State Park

  • Trail Type: Day Hikes
  • | Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance: 2 miles
  • Time: 2 hours hiking time Hiking times may vary.

What to know

Consists of two loops using the Benefield Picnic Area as a center point. History, wildflowers, additional Arkansas plant life, and scenic beauty are prominent features along these easily walked loops.

In the 1880s Benjamin Benefield homesteaded 160 acres here. Approximately 40 acres were cultivated with onions, turnips, potatoes, an apple orchard and vineyard. One of their seven children is buried along the entrance road.

The East Loop follows a path originally constructed by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in 1938. It leads to wonderful views of Bear Hollow, along stone fences, and across the highway near the Petit Jean River Overlook. From there the trail follows the bluff line below the highway to stone steps that lead up to the southern side of this picnic area. This loop is 1.1 miles long.

The Benefield West Loop Trail leads across the highway to a wildlife pond. At that point it connects to the Mossback Ridge Trail, blazed in yellow. The Benefield West Loop Trail returns to this point via the picnic area entrance road, passing the grave. Watch for signs of white-tailed deer, black bear and other native Arkansas animals. It is .9 miles long. (Blue Blazes)
16878 AR-309
Paris, AR 72855
Trailhead: 35.163133, -93.605767
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