We decided to go a little off our original route as the campground we had reserved was closed due to flooding on the Arkansas river. We found another Passport America deal and decided to spend four days at Eureka Springs, AR in the northwest part of the state. It’s a popular tourist town so it has a decent amount of restaurants, boutique shopping, bars, hotels, etc. We stayed on the west edge at Green Tree Campground & RV Park which ended up being a really neat place to stay. The friendly owners and property managers live onsite, and it has several cabins and bungalows along with the RV spots. Along with a nice pool area we visited a couple times, they had a big campfire pit for people to convene at in the evenings, free firewood, a camp store with snacks and other supplies, a proper laundry, an herb garden where you could take what you want, and an outdoor clubhouse area with games and foosball, a wood fired pizza oven, etc. You could tell the place was a continual work in progress as the owners were making improvements while we were there like making benches for the fire pit area out of big tree trunks they were chainsawing in half. It had a real communal feel as people actually talked to their neighbors and there were some long term stays there that seemed to all know each other. They also had no problems with us washing the Fiat and the motorhome so everything got a good cleaning while we were there (most public campgrounds prohibit washing your vehicles and some private campgrounds are OK with it while others want to charge you a small fee for the water usage). There was a streetcar trolley stop right across the street that pretty much covered the entire town but it was $6/person/day and it wasn’t often enough to suit our needs so we just drove where we wanted to go. We would definitely come back next year for a month long stay if they will have us!
While driving around and checking things out, we happened to catch the Farmer’s Market which only had a dozen stalls or so, but we got some grass fed beef bones to make bone broth with and then we went to the downtown area to browse the shops. I have been searching for a particular hot sauce called Queen Majesty and their website said Eureka Springs had a hot sauce store called the Silly Chile that carried it so that was our first stop. We bought three bottles and they gave us a bag of spicy popcorn that was made fresh right as we were leaving, so good. There are some really great, if expensive, stores there like the Crazy Bone that carried some high end brands of footwear, clothing, outdoor gear, etc - leave your checkbook at home! Jeri tried on some Tilley hats (the last hat you’ll ever buy!) that she really liked. After that we got a delicious deep fried pretzel from this hole in the wall. I also got a great haircut for only $25 at one of the local salons, which can be a challenge when going to a different person each month. All in all a great visit, and now we are on to Oklahoma!
Route: See Leg Two - Updated Route With Comments for our comments about driving Arkansas Highway 23 through the Ozarks.