Caverns close for season
Blanchard Springs Caverns near Mountain View has closed its visitor season for 2022. Tours of the caverns will resume March 9. Tour reservations will be available before that date and will be announced when reservations will be accepted.
Ozark-St. Francis National Forest operates the caverns. Around 90,000 visitors tour the caverns each year.
Live well in nature
Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area is hosting the December meeting of “Living Healthy in Nature” at 10 a.m. on Thursday at the Schmieding Center, 2422 N. Thompson St. in Springdale. “Living Healthy in Nature” features monthly outings and healthy living tips for older adults.
From the combined expertise of the Schmieding Center for Senior Health and Education and Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area, the program meets the first Thursday of every month at varying locations. Each month features a different topic and will end with an optional “bring your own lunch,” questions and social time.
The program is free and no reservations are needed. Participants should come dressed for the weather and prepared for moving outside and bring drinking water and an optional sack lunch.
For more information, contact Jay Schneider, Hobbs State Park assistant superintendent at email@example.com or call (479) 789-5000.
Catch a rainbow trout
Arkansas Game and Fish Commission in mid-November stocked rainbow trout in small urban lakes across Arkansas for winter fishing. Stocked lakes around the region include Lake Atalanta in Rogers, Lake Bentonville, Lake Springdale, Murphy Park Lake in Springdale, Torraine Lake and Wells Lake in Fort Smith and Van Buren Municipal pond.
The daily limit is five trout. Anglers 16 and older must carry an Arkansas fishing license and trout permit.
Get cozy in a campsite
Winter camping is offered at Beaver Lake from November through March. Campsites are available at Lost Bridge North, Prairie Creek, Horseshoe Bend and Hickory Creek parks. Camping on the White River below Beaver Dam is available at Dam Site River park.
Visit www.recreation.gov to reserve a site or call (877) 444-6777. For questions call the Beaver Lake project office of the Army Corps of Engineers at (479) 636-1210.
Give gift of camping, archery
Gift cards for the holiday season are available for camping at Coler Mountain Bike Preserve and day passes to The Quiver archery range, both in Bentonville.
At Coler, gift cards are good for a two-night stay on a small tent platform. To purchase cards, call (479) 364-0168 Thursdays through Mondays.
Gift cards to The Quiver may be purchased at the range located at Osage Park, 1701 S.W. F St. in Bentonville from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Go to peelcompton.org to order gift cards online.
Extra cruises added
Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area offers pontoon boat cruises to see bald eagles on Beaver Lake. Trips set sail Saturdays and Sundays through February. Extra dates have been added in December on Dec. 23 and Dec. 27-31.
Cost is $15 plus tax for adults or $7.50 plus tax for children age 6-12. Trips depart at 3 p.m. from Rocky Branch Marina. Advance reservations are required and are made through the park by calling the visitor center, (479) 789-5000.
Trails to close temporarily
Most trails at Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area will be closed for limited permit deer hunts on certain days in December and January. Trails will be closed Dec. 7-11 and Jan. 7-8. Closed trails include Hidden Diversity multiuse trail, Wolf Den and Karst loops, Shaddox Hollow, Sinking Stream and Pigeon Roost.
At 12,000 acres, Hobbs is Arkansas’ largest state park and the only Arkansas state park that allows hunting.
NWA Outdoors listings are for any news or upcoming events in or about the outdoors recreation except competitive ball sports. Send submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org.