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Hemmed-in-Hollow Falls, Compton

#50 of 85 in Nature in Arkansas
Waterfall · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
Hemmed-In-Hollow Falls is a single-drop waterfall located within the Ponca Wilderness Area of the Buffalo National River in northern Arkansas. The height of the falls is 209 feet (64 meters). According to the National Park Service, it is the "Tallest waterfall between the Rockies and the Appalachians."

The waterfall is located in Hemmed-In Hollow, a small valley closed in on three sides by 200 foot (60 m) bluffs. The area can be accessed from at least three different hiking trails; Centerpoint Trailhead and Compton Trailhead along State Highway 43 north of Ponca are probably the best choices for those wanting to park and hike in. Of the two, the latter offers the most direct access. From Compton the falls are 2.5 miles (4 km) from the trailhead, and the route is usually well marked and well maintained, though the hike out of Hemmed-In-Hollow is notoriously steep and difficult. For those floating the Buffalo River, the falls are an easy half-mile trek from the river trailhead and a three-mile hike from Kyle's Landing.

For most of the year the flow over Hemmed-In-Hollow Falls is subdued and during dry periods can diminish to almost nothing. As one looks upward, the water breaks into thousands of individual droplets. Wind swirling in the canyon causes the falls to continually dance about. During times of heavy rain, typically during late winter or early spring, water spills heavily off the cliff.
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Hemmed-in-Hollow Falls reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
32 reviews
  • Great hike. Rucked 30 lbs, made it out OK, but it was challenging. On your hike down to the falls from the trailhead you will get a sense of how steep the hike back up will be. It's well...  more »
  • This is a moderate to difficult hike that really comes to life after a strong rain fall. There are a few smaller falls on this trail and many beautiful streams and creeks to explore - they only come....  more »
  • Beautiful, challenging and a worth hike. Took 1 hour 45 min for going down and 2 hour 10 min for coming up (was a bit tough) and it's a total of 5 miles. Carry good amount of water and some snacks to bite on. Falls are beautiful from over 200 ft between the Rockies and it's a must go.
  • Magnificent views. Cliff look out about halfway down is absolutely breathtaking. The momentum on the way down is hard on knees and ankles so wear good shoes or boots. Be prepared to walk through tons of spider webs. Bring snacks and plenty of water for the trip. Took about 2 hours both ways. Hike back is definitely difficult. Very steep and strenuous to say the least, one of the hardest things i have ever done, so what an accomplishment!!!

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