From Mena, the Talimena Scenic Drive/Ark. 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 into Oklahoma on Rich and Winding Stair mountains. 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.
ROUTE: Beginning from U.S. 71 in Mena, the
Talimena Scenic Drive follows Ark. 88 to Oklahoma and proceeds to Talihina,
Oklahoma, as Okla. 1. Almost the entire Mena-Talihina route travels through the Ouachita National Forest. In September 2005, it became Arkansas's third and newest national scenic byway. It had previously been designated a national forest scenic byway by the U.S. Forest Service and a state scenic byway.
LENGTH: 54 miles, including 18 miles on Ark. 88
THINGS TO KNOW:
Shopping, lodging and dining are available in Mena at the byway's
eastern end. Lodge rooms, camping and a restaurant are available at Queen Wilhelmina State Park.
MAJOR AREA ATTRACTIONS:
REGIONAL TOURISM INFORMATION: