Camping in the Ouachita National Forest
In Arkansas, national forest land abounds. Fifty-six percent of the state is wooded, of which thirteen percent is national forest. Before I nerd it up too much, what this translates into is some seven percent of the state is open to camp in. In Arkansas, you don’t need a backcountry permit to go camping in the national forest. Just pick a spot and camp, and as long as you’re not building a permanent campsite or leaving any traces, you’re free to enjoy the place.
There’s lots of gorgeous spots all around the state but this time around, I headed out into the Ouachita National Forest. In any given forest, there are myriad fire roads, some of which are meant to offer access to the forest service for either logging or controlled burns. Other than the occasional forest service vehicle or hunter’s four-wheeler, there’s hardly anyone on them. I managed to find one that dead ends in a hollow at the base of a mountain.
Sometimes, locals such as myself have ideas similar to mine. They use these little traveled roads to have a party out in the middle of nowhere or to setup deer camp for the first weekend of modern gun season. For my purposes, it serves as a wonderful space to get an antenna in the air in a location with little QRM to speak of.