Two hikers stand above moss-covered rock shelves in a forest

New Nature Trails

Markham Hill Nature Trails provide an escape into nature in the center of Fayetteville

We are thrilled to announce the opening of the new Markham Hill Loop Trail, part of a network of three miles of nature trails on Markham Hill, located between the University of Arkansas and Interstate 49. The 1.6 mile Markham Hill Loop is a soft surface trail running through a 50 acre nature preserve which will be protected and managed in perpetuity by a conservation easement.  As the name implies, the trail makes a circuit around Markham Hill, passing huge mossy boulders, rock outcroppings and springs. The trail runs between tall trees including a variety of oak, hickory, maple and ash along with traces of century-old logging roads and handbuilt native stone walls and culverts.

Hand lettering spells Markham Hill Nature Trails and a hand-drawn terrapin in profile

The trail was built by Arkansas-based Rogue Trails and was sited with the advice of an independent ecologist in order to have a light footprint on the land. The trail intersects two trails – Oak Loop and Pine Loop – that were built as horseback riding trails in the early twentieth century.

“We used a very light touch to build this trail, aiming to disturb the land as little as possible,”  said Phil Penny, founder of Rogue Trails. “There are lots of little surprises along the route that make it a perfect family hike.”

The nature preserve and trails on Markham Hill are made possible by the adjacent development of a neighborhood of new homes and the expansion of Pratt Place Inn, a development that will take place in phases over the next decade. As the trail is on private property, users must register before heading out. 

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