My brother told me that the water is so clean around these parts that water can be drunk straight from the river. The water did appear to be immaculate and what not, but I was refused to believe that it was safe enough to drink without going through some sort of filtration. The river looked cool from the top of hte mountain, nevertheless.
We hiked down the cliff into the Cedar Falls gorge; it was extremely difficult for me as I sprained my right ankle shortly after embarking on the trip. I probably shouldn't have hiked the three-mile trip (at least I believe it was three miles), but I figured I would never have the opportunity again -- no disrespect intended, but Arkansas isn't my idea of an ideal vacation destination.
According to local legend, the Petit Jean Mountain was named after a young woman, of French descent, who discovered that her fiancee, an adventurer, had volunteered to explore the area with Hernando De Soto, a Spanish explorer; she became so upset over this discovery that she cut her hair, disguised herself as a man, and volunteered to be a cabin boy on the expedition. She was excepted; she survived the initial voyage, embarking on their exploration in the general vicinity of present day Petit Jean State Park: after reaching the area the young woman became violently ill; on her deathbed she revealed her true self to her fiancee. She would die later on and be buried on the top of the mountain, under her false name -- "Little Joh".
For thousands of years, visitors have come to see this magnificent waterfall. Among the most beautiful in Arkansas, this fall flows even in dry weather (when the photograph at right was taken) and is the centerpiece of Petit Jean State Park.
Archaeologists know that Native Americans first explored the area around Cedar Falls thousands of years. Likewise, the vicinity has been popular since the early days of Arkansas
The waterfall is created by Cedar Creek, which flows off the edge of a rocky bluff and more than 90 feet straight down into a canyon.
Cedar Falls can be accessed by a hiking trail that leads for 2 miles along the bottom of the canyon. The hike, however, is quite strenuous. An excellent view, without all the hard work, is available from a well-designed wooden boardwalk and overlook just off Highway 154.
I felt like in the movie "The Last of the Mohicans" when I walked behind this waterfall, except this fall is not as big as the one in the movie. Be careful cause the trail behind the fall is rocky and the rocks are very wet and slippery.
We only hiked one of the trails. It was the Cedar Falls Trail. It is listed as an orange trail, but I did not find it too strenuous. It leads to the Cedar Falls, a beautiful fall. Unfortunately I did not take a very good picture of it (don't know why, maybe too amazed at it's beauty :) ) but pictures never do it justice. It is gorgeous.
There are many other trails you can hike, and they all looked just as good.
When driving up the mountain, stop and take a look of your surroundings. The scenery is vast and will leave your speechless.