Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Pig Trail Scenic Byway - Ozark National Forest, Arkansas

Pig Trail Scenic Byway
With college football back in play, weekend traffic is once again heavy on the Natural State's famed Pig Trail Scenic Byway.

The beautiful two-lane highway cuts through the Ozarks, providing a short cut from Interstate 40 at Ozark to Fayetteville, home of the state's beloved University of Arkansas Razorbacks (affectionally known as the Hogs or Pigs). Because of the large number of fans decked out in Razorback Red and the University of Arkansas banners, flags and decals that adorn the lines of cars that pass up and down the highway on football weekends, it has been affectionately (and officially) dubbed the Pig Trail.

Pig Trail Falls
Part of State Highway 22, the Pig Trail actually has a long and colorful history. It originated as an Indian trail that wound its way down out of the mountains to the present site of Ozark on the Arkansas River. Early French trappers and fur traders likely gave the region its Ozarks name (corrupted from the French expression Aux Arcs, which is thought to have referred to the great bend of the river at Ozark). They likely followed this same route up into the mountains as long ago as the 1600s.

It later became an important trail and then road for early settlers of the region and during the Civil War was used by both Union and Confederate troops.

Now part of the Ozark National Forest, the Pig Trail is one of the most beautiful fall drives in the state and is known for its stunning scenery, waterfalls and as an access route to the famed Mulberry River.

To learn more, please visit www.exploresouthernhistory.com/pigtrail.

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