Explore the Ouachita Mountains along the Talimena National Scenic Byway
From Mena, the Talimena Scenic Drive/Arkansas State Highway 88 Scenic Byway travels northwest and quickly enters the Ouachita National Forest, climbing Rich Mountain, Arkansas's second highest peak at 2,681 feet, and passing through Queen Wilhelmina State Park on its way to the Oklahoma border 18 miles to the west. The drive then continues along the Rich and Winding Stair mountains all the way to Talihina, OK. The route offers mountain vistas unsurpassed in mid-America of forested peaks and valleys, lakes and streams. The drive is especially picturesque when the surrounding mountains are clad in spring and autumn foliage and when it sits above clouds and fog in the lower valleys.
Beginning from U.S. 71 in Mena, the Talimena Scenic Drive follows Ark. 88 to Oklahoma and proceeds to Talihina, Oklahoma, as Oklahoma State Highway 1. Almost the entire Mena-Talihina route travels through the Ouachita National Forest. In September 2005, it became a national scenic byway. It had previously been designated a national forest scenic byway by the U.S. Forest Service and a state scenic byway.
Route: 54 miles total; Arkansas portion – 18 miles
Starting at the East End Visitor Information Station near Mena (34.601078, -94.243223), travel Arkansas State Highway 88 to the Arkansas/Oklahoma state line.
Things To Know:
This route can be combined with the West-Northwest Scenic Byway by continuing onto Highway 71 North in Mena.
A part of the drive runs parallel with the Ouachita National Recreation Trail.
Area Attractions, Lodging & Dining:
Regional Tourism Associations:
Western Arkansas' Mountain Frontier Tourism Association
Visit TalimenaScenicDrive.com for more trip planning information.