Let me help you to find a great location in Arkansas for your next photography adventure. I will list many lesser known destinations, as well as the famous “Icon Locations” for photography. I will provide photos (Lots of Photos), location information, consisting of what there is to photograph as well as other information about the destination. I will give costs, maps, directions, contact information, and other essential information for a successful photo trip. I will only post for locations that I have personally photographed to insure a quality guide to great locations for photography in Arkansas.
Interactive Google Map
Use the map + – controls to zoom in and out, use the Map drop-down to change to “Map”, “Satellite”, “Hybrid”, or “Terrain” views. Drag the little man icon from the upper left corner to a map location for street level view. Click on a pushpin for more information about the Photographic Destination, then click on the title to go to the location page.
Arkansas is the “Natural State” and where I call home. There are a great number of Photographic Destinations, many are unique and remote, and can not be found without knowing where they are.
Steel Creek – Buffalo National River Arkansas
Steel Creek CampgroundSteel Creek campground is must stop location for photographers and sight seers alike if you are visiting the Buffalo National River in Arkansas. The Buffalo River is America's first National River and one of the last un-dammed rivers in the United States, flowing free for 135 miles. Roark Bluff, one of the largest on the Buffalo River is easily viewed from almost anywhere in the campground and makes for a fantastic photo opportunity. The campground also serves as the primary canoe lunch for the upper section of the river during springs canoeing season.
What to Photograph:This area offers almost limitless opportunity for photographers any time of the year. Access to the river and the gravel bars along the river the photographer with canoeists floating the river in spring to great fall reflections in quiet pools in the fall. Roark Bluff provides one of the most scenic views in the central US, at least that's my story and I'm sticking to it. The Arkansas Elk are often spotted in the green grasses of the campground in the early morning and late evening.
Best Time for Photographers:Just about anytime can be good for photography here, of course midday light can be very high contrast and hard to work with and the use of HDR photography can be the solution. Since you are in the bottom of valley there is little opportunity to photograph sunrise and sunsets. In the early mornings there is often a good chance of fog on the river, which can make for really nice images. In the spring is normally the rainy season and the water levels will be up and the river will fill with canoes. During the summer and fall the river will slow to a crawl with too little water to float, and it becomes a great place for photographing reflections of the bluffs and trees.
Where it is:LOCATION The Buffalo National River is in the Ozarks in northern Arkansas. Take Highway 74 a mile east of Ponca, Steel Creek gate is on the left. Follow the newly blacktopped road to the bottom and you are there.
Interactive Google MapUse the map + - controls to zoom in and out, click and drag the to move the map, use the Map drop-down to change to "Map", "Satellite", "Hybrid", or "Terrain" views. Drag the little man icon from the upper left corner to a map location for street level view.
Cost:There are no fees for day use of the park. Fees for camping: $10 a night, free from mid-November to mid-March (for both horse and tent camping.)
Facilities:26 sites available first come/first serve, tent camping; 6 people maximum per site; water available nearby mid-March to mid- November; no fees charged mid-November to mid-March. Fourteen horse campsites available. The campground has to sets of flush toilets and water, there is no electric or other hookups available, and no showers.
Links:Water Levels for Buffalo River Newton County Chamber of Commerce National Park Service Website
Location Contact Information:By Mail Superintendent Buffalo National River 402 N. Walnut, Suite 136 Harrison, AR 72601 By Phone Tyler Bend Visitor Center Information (870) 439-2502 Headquarters (870) 365-2700 Headquarters (TDD) (870) 365-2789 Buffalo Point Ranger Station Information (870) 449-4311 Pruitt Ranger Station Information (870) 446-5373 EMERGENCY DISPATCH (888) 692-1162 By Fax 870-365-2701By E-Mail Please send e-mail inquiries by Clicking Here.
Nearest City or Town:Ponca is the closest town, however there are very few facilities in Ponca.
JasperJasper is a quaint and historic town of about 500 people surrounded by natural scenic beauty in every direction. Jasper has several restaurants, gas stations, a couple of motels, grocery store and most other necessities.
Tips for the Photographer:
Equipment:If you have it, bring it. There are a great deal of varied types of photography in not only the campground, but the entire surrounding area. Wide angle lenses to capture the river and bluffs soaring hundreds of feet into the air and a long telephoto lens if you get a chance to photograph the Elk.
Photography Tips:Bring plenty of memory cards and batteries, this is a great place to photograph some of the most scenic and rugged landscape in this part of the country. When photographing the river, use a tripod and a slow shutter speed to give the water a smooth silky look. Using a polarizing filter and rotating it properly will help to saturate colors and remove the glare from the water.
Weather:Click for weather forecast
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