Hike to Hawksbill Crag
Hawksbill Crag is iconic Ozarks! This unusual mountain formation is a favorite place for locals and travelers. Bring your camera because this is the most photographed location in the area! From its top, you can catch huge panoramic views of the valley and hear the Buffalo River. Hawksbill Crag (also known as Whitaker’s Point) is a powerful sight, easily accessible via car, and then hiking in 1.5 miles (3.0 miles round trip).
The drive from Branson is beautiful, with big views of the mountains. Head south via Highway 65, all the way through Harrison, Arkansas. Look for signage for Highway 43 (towards Compton). Stop in at JB Trading Company in Compton. If you’re needing any gear, snacks, drinks, or gas, pop in and browse around for a bit. As you continue down 43, you’ll start driving down towards the Buffalo River Valley floor. Be on the lookout for elk as you drive through this gorgeous stretch of highway. At the 43/21 junction, take Highway 21 to the left towards Boxley. On your right, you’ll want to snap a picture of the Boxley church. Then, on your right, start looking for County Road 5. C.R. 5 is a dirt road that is steep, but is doable in most cars (no low riders!). Follow C.R. 5 for six miles. Look for Hawksbill Crag Trailhead on your left.
This is a very popular vista, so plan on showing up early, and possibly not on a weekend. Hawksbill Crag is very high and without barriers, so if you have small kids or tend to be reckless, don’t attempt this hike. This is not to discourage people from visiting, but this is meant to be a warning. Use caution while at Hawksbill Crag! Don’t get close to the edge because the rocks can slip. Also, bring snacks, water, and any medication (like an Epi-Pen) because from the crag, you’ll be 1.5 miles away from your vehicle.
Ok. Now that the disclaimer is out of the way...
The majority of the hike is flat, except for at the very beginning of the trail where there are a few switchbacks. Follow the well marked trail all the way to the crag. You’ll love the scenic views along the trail, especially when you get close to Hawksbill Crag.
There’s so much love that surrounds Hawksbill Crag. Its been the location for great memories, family photos, and marriage proposals. The sheer magnitude of your surroundings can bring up emotions. Take a few reflective moments while you’re here and breathe deep. Hawksbill Crag is supreme imagery for the Ozarks and we know you’ll love it!