The Sun… It Burns!
This may come as no shock to you all, but I am not a huge fan of the outdoors. I do not necessarily see the point in spending a day outside when a perfectly good couch and a nice, thick book are waiting for me inside my house. Of course, I do go outside from time to time: I walk from the door of my house to my car; I take my dog outside to use the bathroom; I walk from my car to the Maddox; I roll down my window to get my drink from the Sonic carhop and fresh air does get inside my car.
I’m sort of being exaggerative; I do like the sunshine, just not as much as I like the light from my television screen. I enjoy sitting outside – when it’s not insanely hot (seriously, what’s up with that lately?) – and letting the sun warm my skin. It’s calming to sit and listen to nature. However, you can’t do that really well on campus, when you can hear the chatter of passing students or the engines of a thousand cars.
Peace is closer than you think.
Davidsonville Historic State Park is only a thirty-minute drive from campus. It’s admittedly a small park, but there are plenty of things to do there, plus a lot of history (as the Historic part of the name would imply). Davidsonville was established in 1815, and it was the site of Arkansas’ first courthouse, post office and land office.
I made the trip on Sunday with my boyfriend to check it all out.
We arrived at the park around 2:00 in the afternoon, and while it wasn’t as hot as it has been, it was enough to make me sweat. Therefore, we opted to find a trail to walk through some shade. Davidsonville offers (I think) four different hiking trails, all twisting and winding but not very difficult to maneuver.
As mentioned before, I am not an outdoors person, but the chirping of birds and the sound of leaves rustling in the wind was hard to deny. I didn’t even miss the blaring of my television; I did miss the feel of pages being turned in my fingers, but to each their own, I suppose.
Hiking completed, I realized how ignorant I was to have downed quite a bit of sweet tea before entering the park. I crept to the bathroom slowly, palms sweating, fearing the worst; no one likes a public restroom. However, the bathrooms were very clean; I was pleasantly surprised.
After this, we stopped by the visitor center to check on a pedal boat rental. Inside the visitor center, we found an array of snacks, including drinks and ice cream, and several souvenirs, such as t-shirts and hats. Also in the visitor center was memorabilia concerning the history of the park, including a full-size replica of an 1825 trapper/trader boat.
We rented a pedal boat for one hour and were met by an employee to unlock the boat for us. We boated around the small lake for several minutes, enjoying the sunshine and each other’s company. We could see fish underneath us and, speaking of fish, you are free to bring along fishing gear and fish off the banks or from a boat/canoe.
I sincerely hope no one saw the two of us trying to get that pedal boat back up to the dock. I think it took us longer to “park” the thing than the time we actually spent pedal-boating.
Scattered across the park are shaded areas with benches and playground areas (just because you’re an “adult” now doesn’t mean you can’t swing). I found myself wishing I had taken a book along with me so I could curl up on one of the benches and read.
Old Davidsonville is a small park, but filled with history and plenty of fun things for the outdoorsman/woman in you.
- The park is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day.
- 14 ft fishing boats are available for a daily rental price of $17.00; the half-daily rate is $11.00.
- Pedal boat rentals are $6.00 per hour.
- Kayaks and canoes can be rented daily for $17.00, half-daily for $11.00, and hourly for $6.00 (this all includes tax).
For more information about Old Davidsonville State Park, visit https://www.arkansasstateparks.com/parks/davidsonville-historic-state-park#.Ucs7whrtl-N!
Thanks for reading an eagle view,
P.s. A side note that must be celebrated – I didn’t get a sunburn.