Emerald Park

Plan your trip to Emerald Park here!

We’re in the groove of this thing now. Being so close to trails and parks is truly one of the highlights of living in Little Rock. We’re able to drive anywhere from 10-30 minutes for solid trails, beautiful views, and all the nature. Emerald Park is about 15 minutes from my house and across the river from my work. I’ve spent countless hours – don’t tell my boss – staring at the trees and rocks that overlook the Arkansas River.

Rex was very familiar with this trail from his college running career. It’s easy to access and a pretty straightforward hike – no looking for blazed trees or trail markers. So this was the perfect hike to let our minds wander.

The trail starts and finishes with paved portions and an optional all-paved path so EVERYONE can enjoy the river views.

“Between every two pines there is a doorway to a new world” – John Muir

At the beginning of the year I made some resolutions. I resolved to be more consistent with my spending and saving. I thought about this, and my resolve to hike more this year (hello #52weekchallenge, I’m lookin at you) as we criss-crossed the steep switchbacks. Rex and I began discussing future hikes and planning where we wanted to go. My big goal is to hike Ponca to Pruitt via the Buffalo River Trail. It’s a 20-30 mile hike, depending on spurs and if you sidetrack to the Old River Trail.

While I’m not ready for a 3-day hike, yet. I am ready to start dreaming, planning, and prepping. See, when I made those resolutions, I wasn’t quite ready to truly dream of what I could make my life be. At 31 I felt like this was it. I was settled. But there is so much I want to experience. I want to experience 100% financial independence (hello, debt freedom I hope to meet you one day). I want to experience total solitude in nature.

I work right across the river. Typically I stare at these bluffs trying to escape work stress. Now I know what theses bluffs see when they look down on us.

I’ll start prepping for this long hike this March. My mom and I will be going to Ponca, Arkansas for the weekend to hike some amazing trails and pick the brains of those working at the Buffalo Outdoor Center. I need all the tips, tricks, and hacks for this hike yall. Cheers to exploring the beauty in your own backyard, literally. Can’t wait to hit more trails across this beautiful state.

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