Crowley's Ridge Parkway
This National Scenic Byway traverses the ridge that rises out of the otherwise flat Delta region. The unusual landform is an erosional remnant of the Ice Age, carved out over millions of years by torrential rains. It has been built up even further over the past 12 million years by glacier gravel and windblown loess.
The ridge actually begins in Missouri, just below Cape Girardeau, and forms a crescent shape ending at Helena-West Helena in Arkansas. You’ll find lots of natural attractions on the ridge, including plant communities trapped here by changing climate at the end of the Ice Age. Crowley’s Ridge Parkway signage guides you along the 200-mile Arkansas segment of the route.
Named for the first documented white settler to this region, the highways that make up the scenic byway take you by sights that include museums, Native American sites, historic districts, cemeteries, Civil War battlefields, African-American heritage sites, galleries, cultural centers and festivals. There are scenic vistas, wild flowers, forests and farms, plus old-fashioned country stores, antique shops and stands for homegrown fruits and vegetables.
Recreational opportunities along the route include four state parks, a national forest, and wildlife management areas – offering everything from fishing, boating, swimming, picnicking, hiking, wildlife and bird watching, to tennis, photography, hunting, camping and golf.
Official Arkansas visitor centers for the parkway include the Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum and Educational Center in Piggott, the Arkansas State University Museum in Jonesboro, the Forrest L. Wood Crowley’s Ridge Nature Center in Jonesboro, the St. Francis County Museum in Forrest City and the Delta Cultural Center located in Helena-West Helena.
Great River Road
Our Arkansas Great River Road is part of a 10-state route that originates in Lake Itasca, Minnesota and extends to the Gulf of Mexico, along both sides of the Mississippi River. The route is marked by green Pilot’s Wheel signs.
The Arkansas segment follows Delta lands shaped by the awesome power of the river, but the river rarely shows itself as it is hidden behind giant levees. Over time, the river’s rich, alluvial soil has been adapted into America’s most productive farmland.
The mighty Mississippi River carries transportation, recreation, energy and industry through the heartland of America. Fascinating stops all along the way recall great moments in history. From the days of Native Americans, de Soto, Marquette and Joliet, the Civil War, steamboats and Mark Twain, the Mississippi River has played a vital role in the development of the nation.
Treat yourself and your family to an unforgettable view of the Eastern Arkansas segment of this great route. Just follow the green and white pilot wheel highway markers as you travel.
Official Arkansas interpretive centers for the Great River Road are located at the Hampson Archeological Museum State Park in Wilson, the Parkin Archeological State Park in Parkin, in the Delta Cultural Center in Helena-West Helena, the White River National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center in St. Charles, Arkansas Post National Monument in Gillett, Lake Chicot State Park at Lake Village, and the Lakeport Plantation near Lake Village.
The Great River Road in Other States: