Close

Uh oh...

It appears that you're using a severely outdated version of Safari on Windows. Many features won't work correctly, and functionality can't be guaranteed. Please try viewing this website in Edge, Mozilla, Chrome, or another modern browser. Sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused!

Read More about this safari issue.
Close
Northwest Charleston
Get directions
Northwest Travel 0

Finding Peace at Cherokee Prairie

H

Hiking and spending time in nature is my favorite way to relax and enjoy peace and quiet. The sounds of birds, rustling breezes and babbling brooks can have incredible calming effects, but some of Arkansas’s most popular trails and nature areas are often bursting with people. While meeting and interacting with fellow nature lovers is one of the joys of hiking, there are times when I seek solitude and quiet. Cherokee Prairie is one of my favorite places to disconnect from the world and reconnect with nature and myself.

Located in the town of Charleston at the intersection of State Highways 60 and 217 within Franklin County, Cherokee Prairie is one of the most extensive tracts of tallgrass prairie located in the Arkansas Valley. There are no marked trails within the prairie, but visitors can walk freely through the area. Find a spot for a picnic, enjoy bird watching and take lots of photos. To preserve the prairie, guests are asked not to remove any flowers or grasses from the prairie.

By Dan Pancamo – Flickr: Painted Bunting, CC BY-SA 2.0

Birdwatching at Cherokee Prairie

Cherokee Prairie represents a rare and special bird habitat full of native grasslands that are no longer available in other parts of the state due to agriculture and land development. Twelve species of birds named on the list of Arkansas Birds of Conservation Interest, including Henslow’s Sparrows, have been documented in the Cherokee Prairie. Other birds often seen in the area include Cooper’s Hawk, Painted Bunting, Bob White, Dickcissel, Loggerhead Shrike, Bell’s Vireo, etc. Large groups of Bald Eagles have also been spotted roosting and flying in the area.

Cherokee Prairie Wildflowers

Various species of wildflowers can be observed in the Cherokee Prairie from early spring through the late fall, with May and June being the most popular viewing season. Look for red and yellow Indian Paintbrush early in the season with Purple Coneflowers and blazing star in abundance next. Many additional species of wildflowers, such as milkwort and downy phlox, are observed throughout the growing season.

Butterflies

The abundance of wildflowers attracts a variety of butterflies to the area. Gulf fritillaries, monarchs and more can be observed and photographed flitting around the wildflowers.

Are you looking for more peaceful stops? Visit Flanagan Prairie Natural Area or the Presson-Oglesby Preserve, located just a few miles away.

Photos courtesy of Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism unless otherwise noted.

Meet the
author.

Learn more about .

A little about .

Julie Kohl works from home as a writer and virtual assistant while raising her young son. A former Yankee who was "converted" to the south by her husband, Julie has grasped on to rural life in a sleepy, blink-your-eyes-and-you'll-miss-it town in central Arkansas. Julie loves adventure. Not necessarily "scare-your-pants-off" adventure but the kind where you seek out new and exciting things. New foods, new places, new experiences. On her blog, Seek Adventures, Julie shares about the outdoor and travel adventures of her family as they camp and standup paddleboard across the South. You can also learn more about her writing on her site Seek Adventures Media.

Read more stories by Julie Kohl

 

Visit Julie Kohl’s Website

Like this story? Read more from Julie Kohl

0
0
0
0
0
0

Join the Conversation

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

 

Submit a photo

We select one featured photo per week, but we show many more in our gallery. Be sure to fill out all the fields in order to have yours selected.
  • Accepted file types: jpg, png, Max. file size: 5 MB.

Regions Topics
Social

What are you looking for?

Explore Arkansas

Central Arkansas

Little Rock, Conway, Searcy, Benton, Heber Springs

Northwest Arkansas

Fayetteville, Bentonville, Springdale, Fort Smith

South Arkansas

Hot Springs, Pine Bluff, Texarkana, Arkadelphia

Explore by Topic