Devil's Eyebrow. That name alone draws instant interest in Arkansas's
newest natural area and wildlife management area.
Eyebrow is a facility of the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission and
the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. It was formally dedicated a month
ago, and somewhat fittingly, the dedication was on the day of the
state's first May snowfall.
County on the north side of Beaver Lake, Devil's Eyebrow covers 1,954
acres and is open to the public. But you will have to walk.
area is reached off U.S. Highway 62 about a half-mile east of Gateway
and the intersection with Arkansas Highway 37. A gravel road turns south
of the highway and leads to the parking area. From there on, visitors
must walk. No cars or trucks, no all-terrain vehicles, no horses and
mules can be used by anyone.
south of the parking area, the terrain slopes down steeply and
eventually runs to the Indian Creek arm of Beaver Lake. The area has a
number of old logging roads that visitors can walk. Features of Devil's
Eyebrow include small creeks, rocky bluffs, waterfalls, a host of
unusual and interesting plants and a variety of wildlife. Trimble
Mountain, elevation 1,720 feet, is the highest point on Devil's Eyebrow.
The unusual name of the area stems from a 19th century comment by a local resident, according to a history of Benton County.
when the surveyors were doing their preliminary work on the location of
the Frisco Railroad, Archibald 'Uncle Arch' Blansett (one of the pioneer
settlers in the area) with other neighbors were greatly interested in
the proposed route through their neighborhood. Discussing the route with
one of the railroad party, he is credited with saying: 'Build a
railroad right through these mountains? You can't do it, man; you can't
do it. You might as well try to build a railroad on the Devil's eyebrow
as to undertake to build one in such a place.'
railroaders were so amused by the remark that from then on it was always
known, even in Frisco literature, as the 'Devil's Eyebrow'. The name
As an AGFC
wildlife management area, Devil's Eyebrow will be linked with Beaver
Lake WMA. Deer and bear hunters are restricted to shotguns or
muzzle-loading rifles during the 2013-2014 season. Devil's Eyebrow may
be limited to archery hunting only for deer in the future.
Hutchings, urban wildlife biologist for northwest Arkansas said, "There
are deer and turkey on Devil's Eyebrow, and we've been told an
occasional bear is seen here." Squirrel numbers also appear good.
are interested in Devil's Eyebrow because it is the only place in
Arkansas where the rare black maple tree is found. It is also a popular
roosting area in winter for bald eagles.
Eyebrow was obtained by the two state agencies through a route that has
been successful a number of times in recent decades.
of the land, who had bought it before the downturn in residential
development a few decades back, indicated a willingness to sell, The
Nature Conservancy of Arkansas stepped forward and bought it until
Natural Heritage and Game and Fish could arrange funds for the purchase.