Back to Nature: Beginning Backpacking Training Offered at Hobbs

My Tuesday blogs are dedicated to experiencing the great outdoors. I’ll feature anything from park events to Natural State destinations worth seeing. Join me each week to get back to nature.

Jill M. Rohrbach

What better way to immerse yourself in nature than to go backpacking? When my husband and I first started dating (and before we were married with children), we hiked all the time and would often spend a couple nights on the trail. We learned from experience what and how much to carry in our packs. There is a balance between what you can physically carry on your back and what you really need to eat and to sleep. 

Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area near Rogers will offer a one-day training session on the fundamentals of backpacking from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 24. The cost is $25 per person and the program is for all ages. Topics to be covered include: the joys of back country hiking and camping, how to pack and carry needed supplies and equipment, how to build a fire and cook meals, safety and survival knowledge, and Leave No Trace ethics.

A view of Beaver LakeAdult participants 18 years and older will be invited to go on an overnight primitive camping trip with a park staff member on May 22 and 23. A hike and primitive camp out is also planned for interested parents and their 12 years and older children on June 5 and 6. Both hikes will be on Pigeon Roost Trail at the park. Camp sites overlook Beaver Lake and are four miles by trail from the trailhead. The cost for the overnight camping trips are $50 per person.

Of course, even after you have the knowledge of the right things to take, you still have to remember to pack it. One time we forgot our utensils and my husband carved spoons for us from sticks. Of course, that is also one of my favorite memories of our time spent in the woods.

Call the park office for reservations: 479-789-5000. The Arkansas State Park system’s largest state park, 12,045-acre Hobbs State Park-Conservation Area lies between Beaver Lake to the north and War Eagle Creek to the south. The park is managed jointly by Arkansas State Parks, the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. State Highway 12 bisects the property.

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