MO ARK Mills & Springs Road Trip

MO ARK Mills & Springs Road Trip
Hodgson Spring Mill, Dora, MO
Bridge of the Full Moon, Garvan Gardens
Bridge of the Full Moon, Garvan Gardens, Hot Springs, Arkansas

Missouri and Arkansas mills and springs drew us along on a road trip to appreciate their scenic beauty. We started in Southeast Missouri going south to Hot Springs, Arkansas with a return loop through Memphis, TN. Our first stop at Reed’s Spring in Centerville, MO was a small mill and spring on private property that was open to considerate visitors. Such a peaceful treasure just off the main road. Then on to Alley Spring State Park. Alley Spring flows 81 million gallons per day of cool, clear water. Next was lunch at Echo Bluff State Park Lodge on Sinking Creek.

We spent the next two nights in a treehouse at River of Life Farm on the North Fork of the White River, a venue at peace with the environment. From there we visited Topaz Mill, Hodgson Mill and Dawt Mill. The Hodgson Spring at the base of a bluff is a near perfect setting. The hosts at Topaz Spring and Mill were exceptionally gracious and knowledgeable.

Heading south again, we stopped at Grand Gulf State Park near the southern border of Missouri. Grand Gulf is an unusual geological site where a collapsed cave system turned into an Ozark canyon. Crossing into Arkansas, we stopped at Mammoth Springs, a huge spring that used to generate hydroelectric power. After lunch in Calico Rock, we were off to Petit Jean State Park. Petit Jean features some stone and timber cabins in scenic locations near trails and multiple overlooks where you can see for miles from wooded rock outcroppings.

Next we spent several days at Hot Springs, Arkansas, at the National Park and nearby attractions. We stayed in a mountain top Airbnb that was only 6 miles from the crowds but seemed like it was a million miles away in a peaceful cabin at the edge of the sky. We loved Garvan Gardens, Bathhouse Row, the restaurants, shops and the Hot Springs vibe.

On the way home, we visited Graceland in Memphis and The National Quilt Museum in Paducah along with numerous antique shops all along our path.

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