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Friday, June 09, 2017

Video + Photos: Sugarloaf Mountain | Hike an Island!


My family and I have been hiking Sugar Loaf Mountain since I was a little girl.  It's an island in Greers Ferry Lake positioned between Sugar Loaf Marina and Fairfield Bay Marina.  We usually boat over from Devil's Fork in the town of Greers Ferry.

If you don't have a boat, you can call the marinas and ask if they offer boat rides over to the mountain.  I don't know about Sugar Loaf Marina, but I know Fairfield Bay Marina has certain weekends they shuttle over to the mountain.

Note: There is a Sugarloaf Mountain in Heber Springs, Arkansas, and it is not an island.  You can drive to it to hike.  While you're there, you can dip your toes in the freezing cold Little Red River that's near it!

On Memorial Day, Colin and my parents and Harlow and I hiked up to the top of Sugar Loaf for the second time in Harlow's life.  The first time we took her was two summers ago, and she was carried for that trip.  She walked and hiked a good portion this time around.

 

When you hike to the top, you'll come to the first overlook.  It's beautiful, but keep going!  You'll walk across the flat top of the mountain to get to the next overlook.  Then you'll turn around and go back the way you came.

When you get to the top, you may see bald eagles flying down below!  We saw one while we were there!  There is an eagle's nest on the mountain, and Greers Ferry Lake is a great place to see bald eagles flying around.

There is a trail that goes along the base of the mountain.  The route we take goes to the top of the mountain and then turns around and goes back the same way.

These is another trail that has been closed.  Over the last several years the trails have deteriorated.  They do some upkeep, but they are not liked they used to be.  First, they closed the most difficult trail.  Then the bridge burned, and it wasn't rebuilt.  If you haven't been hiking the mountain for over 20 years like we have, you won't notice the differences.

Despite all that, it's a mountain you have to hike.  It has beautiful woods and caves and rocks.  And look at the view!  

If you're in to geocaching, there is a box hiding on Sugar Loaf where you can sign a notebook and leave a gift for the next hiker!  

For those of you wondering about the difficulty, it would probably rate as strenuous based on the Arkansas trails.  If you have ever hiked the Cedar Falls trail at Petit Jean, then you know that trail is marked as strenuous.  Sugar Loaf is more difficult to hike than Cedar Falls, but it's a bit shorter of a hike.

Greers Ferry Lake and Sugar Loaf Mountain are maintained by the US Corp of Engineers.

Now, enjoy a few pictures from our latest venture up the mountain.  There is a video at the bottom of the blogpost from our hike.





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