Abandoned Gear?

If you left camping gear on the Ouachita Trail between miles 207 and 208, FoOT members have recoverd them. Contact Pinnacle Mountain Stae Park at 501-868-5806 to identify and claim them.

Ouachita Challenge needs FoOT volunteers

2014 Ouachita Challenge!

Saturday, April 05, 2014 to Sunday, April 06, 2014

The Ouachita Cycling Club is now in its second decade of presenting the Ouachita Challenge. This unique event in a sixty plus mile loop provides two days of mountain bike touring and racing on two of our best trails. The Ouachita Trail is known for its challenging climbs, vast technical sections, and scenic views of the Ouachita River. The Womble Trail (an IMBA Epic) is known for its fast trails and scenic views of the Ouachita Mountains and valleys.

With our many great sponsors and the support from numerous volunteer groups, including Friends of the Ouachita Trail, we make every effort to assure you that your Ouachita Challenge Mountain Bike Adventure is a memorable and enjoyable experience.

In past years, FoOT has worked road crossinsgs and some aid stations. This year, FoOT will man all the aid stations, so more volunteers will be needed.

Add these dates to your calendar now and plan to help with this wonderful event in some way.

Pipeline Creek Re-Route and Eagle Scout Project

Many hikers have braved the shaky old landscaping timber bridge over Pipeline Creek at MM 195.2, but no more. On November 16, 2013, James Hughes, as his Eagle Scout Project, led a group of Boy Scouts and volunteers in constructing a trail re-route around the old bridge. James is the son of Alan and Laurie Hughes of Little Rock, and is a member of Troop 29 at Christ the King Catholic Church. A well done to James and his trail crew.

Here is a description of the re-route, so be sure to update your trail guides.

Walking from west to east, the trail intersects a gravel logging road (Duffy Road) at about 195.1; TURN RIGHT (east) and head downhill on the road about 375 feet to a low water concrete bridge. The pipeline crosses the road just before the concrete bridge, and there are gates on both sides of the road. Continue on the road across the concrete bridge for about another 300 feet where the trail will leave the road; TURN LEFT (north) and head out through the woods. The trail is level for about 100 yards when it starts up a small hill. The rock outcropping at the top overlooks the old bridge off to the left. At the bottom of the hill, TURN RIGHT onto the old trail. You are on your way to a small wooden bridge at about 195.4.

Notice of Re-Routes at MM 195.1 and 196.3

The Red Bluff Creek bridge was deemed unusable several years ago, and a “temporary” re-route was constructed. The re-route turns south on the road right before the old bridge, and follows that road on through the deer camp out to Duffy Road. It turns east on Duffy, crosses the creek on the low water bridge, on up the hill, cutting back north into the woods just before getting to the clear cut on the right. FoOT has been working with Arkansas State Parks for the past year to get the old bridge replaced with some type of permanent water crossing. However, nothing has been decided at this point. Therefore, the “temporary” re-route is still in place. The old bridge should not be used. This re-route is at MM 196.3

There is another unusable landscape timber bridge just west of the Red Bluff Creek bridge over Pipeline Creek. Within the next few weeks we will have an Eagle Scout Project construct a re-route of that section. That re-route will continue the trail on Duffy Road over the low water bridge, on up the hill a couple of hundred feet, and cut into the woods back to the north. It will rejoin the old section of the trail on the rock outcropping right above the old bridge. This reroute will be at MM 195.1

Annual Meeting Reminder

The Annual Meeting is scheduled Saturday, October 26 at Stephens Park Pavilion at Blakeley Dam just west of Mountain Pine, AR. Meeting starts at 11 A.M. with lunch at noon. Please send in your reservations to the FoOT e-mail (FoOT@friendsot.org) for lunch ASAP.

In addition, please send in your votes for the new Board Members.

Remember, we are a 501c3 group and we need the annual meeting.

Contact Bo Lea at 501-662-8809 or Blea@windstream.net.

Lunsford Corner Reopens

Yesterday we received notice from Central Arkansas Water that the OT in the Lunsford Corner area is open again, although they have not taken all of the signs down yet.  The logging contractor still has to close out the logging roads, but that should not have any impact on the trail.  They were actually trying to wait for some rain so they could seed the roads.  So, the trail is open. Enjoy and anything to FoOT that needs attention.

2013 FoOT Annual Meeting!

FoOT Members and Friends,
The Annual meeting of the membership of Friends of the Ouachita Trail is set – make your plans to attend now.  Please check your e-mail for requests to RSVP.

Date:    Saturday, October 26th
Time:    11:00 am – 12:00 noon
Place:    Stephens Park Pavilion – Hot Springs, AR.
Mt. Pine Road at Blakely Dam east side

Primary Business of Meeting:  Election of three directors
FoOT is governed by nine directors, elected by the membership.  Directors serve three-years, staggered terms, with three directors elected every year.  The Board has nominated Robert Cavanaugh, Sue Ehrgood and Dave Peterson. The ballot is included in this email.  Whether or not you plan to attend the meeting, please vote. Membership participation is important. Return the ballot either by mail, email or at the annual meeting.

Other Business:
There will be a report of highlights of FoOT accomplishments and progress during the past year and the plans/challenges for the coming year.  Also, this is an opportunity for you, the members, to give your feedback to the directors.  Other business as may be introduced from the floor.

Fun:  Scenic area and close to the Vista Trail

Food:  Following the meeting, lunch will be provided by FoOT in appreciation of the support of the membership.

Board Nominations Needed

FoOT Membership,

FoOT is governed by nine directors, who the membership elects each fall. This fall we have three board positions to fill, and are seeking candidates for these positions. Board members serve a three year term. Those elected this fall will serve 2014 through 2016 (with two additional terms allowed). During that time, you would be expected to attend three to four meetings a year, to help provide overall guidance to the organization, to participate in the election of our operating officers, and to approve and monitor our financial position. Candidates for the Board positions must be identified by September 28th.

The Board elects the operating officers, which serve for the calendar year. Operating officers include the President, three Vice-Presidents (Maintenance, Membership, and Community Relations), and a Secretary / Treasurer. Candidates for officer positions must be identified by the end of the year December 31.

If you would like to nominate someone for the FoOT Board or wish to serve yourself, please let me know at Blea@Windstream.net or our Secretary / Treasurer, Richard Lawrence at law28@aristotle.net. There are numerous positions of service within FoOT.

You will be receiving information in a couple of weeks regarding our FoOT annual meeting. Currently we are looking at the last Saturday in October, the 26th in Hot Springs. Your support of Friends of the Ouachita Trail is greatly appreciated. A lot of good things are happening on the OT, we hope you can be involved.

Bo Lea
FoOT President
501-622-8809 cell
870-356-5052 home

New President of FoOT

Scott Meyer has resigned as President of FoOT for health reasons. We wish him a speedy recovery and thank him for all his work as President, District Captain and Adopter.

Bo Lea has been elected as our new President.

  • President:                                        Bo Lea
  • Vice President / Maintenance:        Ron Mayfield
  • Vice President / Resources:           Robert Cavanaugh
  • Vice President / Membership:         Sid Wood
  • Vice President / Public Relations:   Open
  • Secretary / Treasurer:                     Richard Lawrence

Ned Skoog has joined the board also.

Please welcome Ned, send best wishes to Scott, and support them for the 2013 year. The next board election will be held at the annual meeting (date and location TBD).