Full Day Adventure: Lower District

Two paddlers in a canoe head downstream from Spring Creek.
Two paddlers in a canoe head downstream from Spring Creek Access.

Terra Fondriest

Paddle Spring Creek to Dillard's Ferry (4.6 miles)

Spring Creek to Dillard's Ferry is one of the most popular floats in the Lower District. At moderate river levels, this section can be completed in 2 to 3 hours. This friendly float is great for folks that want to get a good feel for the river, but don't want to be out all day. You will float by Jackpot, Kimball, and Stairstep Bluffs as you make your way towards Water Creek, a great place to park the boat and get out and explore. This float ends at Dillard's Ferry, the Highway 14 bridge.

Use caution as you float through Tie Chute, about 1/2 mile downstream of Water Creek and one mile above Dillard's Ferry. Depending on the water level, this narrow chute can be challenging to navigate. Shuttle time between Spring Creek and Dillard's Ferry is about 20 minutes (7 miles). Click here for boating safety and canoe rental information.

The Spring Creek Landing has been closed to vehicle-assisted launches. Watercraft may still be put in and take out at this point, but must be hand carried to and from the parking area. This is to ensure the safety of visitors and avoid continued erosion.

Visit the Buffalo Point Ranger Station

Once you finish your float, stop by the Buffalo Point Ranger Station, which is open Thursday through Monday from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM. The ranger station features a small theater displaying the park documentary, interpretive exhibits, a small bookstore/gift shop, and an information desk staffed by National Park Service rangers. Drop in for information about the area or for assistance in planning your next visit!

Hike the Indian Rockhouse Trail (3.5 miles)

One of the most popular hikes in the state of Arkansas, the Indian Rockhouse Trail meanders past a sinkhole, waterfall, mine prospect, Panther Creek, sculpted bedrock and a quarry. Many of these geologic features are typical of a karst landscape.

People have been visiting this bluff shelter as far back as 7,000 BC. Coming to the attention of the Carnegie Institute, excavations were carried out in the 1930s, revealing an array of stone tools, basketry, and food remains. The site has been protected from all excavation and collection since becoming part of Buffalo National River in 1972 so that the remains of this unique site can be preserved for future generations.

The Indian Rockhouse is a moderate to strenuous trail with steep inclines/declines. Pets are not permitted on this trail. Click here for more information about the hike.

Cool off at Buffalo Point

Whether you take a swim, sunbathe, have a picnic, or go fishing, the scenery at Buffalo Point Swimming Beach will take your breath away. Drive down to Buffalo Point Campground and park at the day use access between the A and B loops. A deep pool is overshadowed by elegant Painted Bluff, one of the most iconic blufflines on the Buffalo River. A small picnic area overlooks the river. This is an outstanding spot to enjoy the end of a big day in the Lower District.

Back to Trip Ideas page.

Last updated: June 13, 2023

Park footer

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

402 N. Walnut Street
Suite 136

Harrison, AR 72601


870 439-2502

Contact Us