Scenic USA - Arkansas

Buffalo River Valley

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Buffalo River Valley - Marshall, Arkansas

Photos by Ben Prepelka
Scenic USA Photography

   The Buffalo River Valley, a broad, level swath cut through the Ozark Mountains, lies amid a wild and rugged national parkland. Promoted as 95,000 acres of recreational fun, park experiences include whitewater challenges, multi-day float trips, miles of wilderness hiking and majestic Arkansas scenery.
   Long before its designation of the first National River, some of the area's first settlers, arriving in 1830, knew how to make it in this rugged wilderness. Remembered as a stubborn and independent lot, valley farmers worked hard clearing new fields, coping with Mother Nature's whims, U.S. Route 65 Farm - Marshall, Arkansas and struggled to make ends meet. The attraction here was miles of fertile bottomland, creating a strong bond between the land and these new Arkansas pioneers.
   Farming traditions continue today, and local residents take exception to the methods and tactics taken by the National Parks Service in acquiring additional land. With sizable sections of prime farmland already under park jurisdiction, farmers continue to feel the pressure to sell their property or face condemnation. Lease-back and use-occupancy are options not always offered. Continuing generations of Buffalo River Valley farmers feel strongly against giving up their land for "three months of recreation" and visitor's entertainment.

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