When you think of Oklahoma, you probably think of cowboys and the open road, right?
Hey, that actually doesn’t sound like such bad place for a vacation, does it?
The fact remains that Oklahoma is a state with so much natural beauty and spots to explore, all of which fly under the radar of your traditional tourist. This spells great news for those who want to enjoy hiking, biking and simply spending time outdoors without dealing with hordes of crowds.
The amount of outdoor activities in Oklahoma is staggering, including some of the top trails and beautiful photo ops in the country.
As such, the state is best experienced over the course of a few days through a road trip that allows you to see every nook and cranny of the Sooner State. In fact, renting an RV in Oklahoma to fully explore the landscape and immerse yourself in a true outdoor experience.
In terms of what the state has to offer those who want to get out and get their blood pumping, the options are seemingly endless. That said, we’ve outlined some prime options available for travelers who aren’t afraid of a little adventure.
Black Mesa State Park
Often regarded as one of the state’s top attractions, Black Mesa provides the ultimate experience for nature-lovers. Not only can you spot wildlife such as golden eagles and mountain lions, but also take a hike to the Black Mesa Summit. Representing the highest point of the entire state, this 8.4 mile trek is friendly to beginners and offers an epic photo op of Oklahoma at its peak.
Beavers Bend State Park
If the forest is more your speed, Beavers Bend is most definitely for you. In addition to the lovely shores of Broken Bow Lake and Mountain Fork River, those who want to hit the trails have plenty of options. There are numerous hiking and nature trails in Beavers Bend worth checking out, many of which are friendly to newbies.
Beyond hiking, Beavers Bend offerings trout fishing and plenty of other opportunities to get on the lakes via canoe or water ski.
In terms of natural beauty, it’s hard to beat Turner Falls, representing one of Oklahoma’s tallest waterfalls alongside a massive campground. Great for a day-hike and friendly to visit year-round, some key things to do at Turner Falls Park for the outdoorsy type include..
- Ziplining adventures which offer a thrilling, one-of-a-kind view of the Falls and nearby Collings Castle
- Tubing, diving and fishing in the swimming area which sits below Turner Falls
- A variety of hiking trails, including Outlaw Cave with its slew of tight spaces for those willing the brave the cavern
Robbers Cave State Park
Speaking of caves, Robbers Cave State Park is a stunning nature spot that gets its namesake for being the hideout of famed outlaw Jesse James. In addition to Robbers Cave itself, the park boasts horseback riding, hunting and plenty of cliff-exploring for those who want to tap into their very own sort of outlaw spirit. Don’t let the name fool, you though: this park is totally family friendly.
The Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge
For those who want to get moving and see some of the state’s must-see wildlife, look no further. Seriously: where else can you walk among bison, elk and prairie dog in the wild? Although the refuge was obviously designed to protect a variety of endangered species, the various trails do indeed offer some potential up-close encounters.
The Dog Hollow and Elk Mountain Trails are the crown jewels of the refuge, offering up to 15 miles through oak forests, mountains and prairie to see along the way. Perhaps surprisingly to some visitors, the Elk Mountain Trail actually allows visitors to bring dogs, granted that they stay on a leash.
Biking in Oklahoma City
Last but not least, don’t neglect some of the amazing outdoor experiences you can have within civilization. OKC in particular is home to a series of ten interconnected trails which allow you to explore the downtown district as well as the outskirts of the city.
For those who enjoy hitting the road without having to worry about parking, the city has you covered. There are parks, restaurants and other stops along the way to keep you fed and entertained during your trek.
We urge you to come see what Oklahoma has to offer out-of-towners, especially if you’re someone who finds their zen in nature. No matter what your speed might be, we guarantee that the state has some pleasant surprises in store for you.