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Little Missouri River

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General Information

Description - From its headwaters south of the Big Fork community to the backwaters of Lake Greeson, the Little Missouri River descends some 1,035 feet for 29 miles, averaging a 35 foot drop per mile, creating an excellent environment for whitewater. The river also provides a solid introduction to the Ouachita Mountain country of southwest Arkansas. Pine-covered ridges tower hundreds of feet above the rocky channel. In several places, the river has cut through the twisted rock layers of the Ouachitas.

Several public campgrounds can be found on Lake Greeson, including Star of the West at the take-out point for the lower float. In addition to the public campsites such as Albert Pike Campground, there's a privately operated campground just across the river. This operation also features rental cabins, a grocery store, snack bar, and gasoline pumps.

Recreation - Little Missouri River offers possibilities for all kinds of outdoor pursuits such as paddling, fishing, hiking along the stream bank, wildlife photography, and swimming in deep pools. The Little Missouri River is among the most seasonal of Arkansas streams, primarily because of its small watershed. Its "floatable" only after periods of considerable rainfall, and even then the stream may not stay navigable for long. The wet months of spring offer the best chances for catching it at a good level. An
old low-water bridge just below the Arkansas 84 bridge offers a primitive but acceptable gauging system: one to two feet of water over the slab means that conditions are desirable.

Like many of Arkansas' other mountain streams, the Little Missouri harbors small mouth bass, spotted bass, green sunfish, and longears which may be fished year round. Thousands of rainbow trout are stocked in the stream both above and below Lake Greeson.

Climate - Arkansas has a temperate climate with the coldest temperatures near freezing during December, January and February. Daytime highs for these months usually reach 55 degrees F. Spring and fall temperatures are very mild with lows dipping to 44 degrees F and highs reaching 70 degrees F. July and August are the hottest months of the year with average temperatures reaching 90 degrees F. June and September average temperatures usually reach into the mid-eighties. Spring and winter months are the wettest of the year.

Location - The Little Missouri River is situated south of Mena in the Ouachita National Forest of Arkansas. Little Missouri River begins south of the Big Fork community and flows 29 miles until joining Lake Greeson.

The river's major access points are the Albert Pike Campground area at Forest Road 106 north of Langley, the Arkansas Hwy. 84 bridge west of Langley, and the U.S. Hwy. 70 bridge at the Star of the West area on Lake Greeson.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: the put=in is a dirt road down to the bottom of the hwy bridge and there is limited parking space. The float is fantastic if the water level is above 4' on the usgs river gauge..below that and you have to get out and drag your boat a lot. This is some of the best whitewater in Arkansas when there is water and there are few people on the river so you have a uncrowded river. There are some areas that require some technical skills to avoid a spill..so its not for kids that cannot swim or for adults that get upset about taking a spill..there are some good play spots for kayakers and for kids and the scenery is nice too..pack some food and water because its at least a 4 hour trip. most ark. river guides have information about where to put in and take out..we have only done the section just above the lake.

More Information

Contact Information:
Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism, One Capitol Mall , Little Rock, AR, 72201, Phone: 501-682-7777, Fax: 501-682-2523

Additional Information:
Arkansas Rivers and Streams - Arkansas has numerous rivers and streams located throughout the state. We have information on 13 rivers, four creeks and one bayou.


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