It was a clear, blue sky morning. We got everything ready and pulled out at 9:15. Stillwater was still pretty sleepy at this time of the morning as we drove through town. We hopped on Highway 177 south, out of town for 51 miles, which would eventually connect with I-40 east. We had plans to stop for fuel near the campground, but we saw an easy-in, easy-out station with a diesel fueling island as we left town, so Bob decided to make the most of the opportunity and fuel now. Diesel was $5.19/gal. The other station that Bob had researched for fuel was more expensive, so we were happy to be able to stop here. We crossed the Cimmaron River and headed out into the countryside.
Traffic was light on this country highway. We crossed through Indian Reservation lands of the Iowa, Pottawatome, Cherokee, and Seminole Nations complete with casinos.
The landscape was beautiful with rolling hills, farmland, and grasslands like Wisconsin.
Diesel prices were all over the place and as high as $5.99/gal. here in Oklahoma.
We crossed over Lake Eufaula on the eastern side of Oklahoma along I-40. All the bodies of water in this area, whether river or lake, have a red or reddish brown color due to the color of the soil.
We reached the Arkansas border at 1:30 and continued on I-40 east.
Part of this section of highway is designated “scenic highway” from Alma to Ozark, AR and beyond.
We left I-40 and exited onto Highway 64 towards the town of Ozark, but we didn’t have to go through downtown.
We turned on Highway 23 and crossed the Arkansas River and had only 2 miles to go.
We pulled into Aux Arc Park–an Army Corps of Engineers campground, on the Arkansas River.
This is a picture of our GPS showing where we are located in our campsite at this park.
The dam sits right at the entrance to the park and separates Ozark Lake from Lake Dardanelle.
Sitting tied up at the dam was a tugboat and the barge that it was transporting.
We checked in and went to our site, F15, which was located near the entrance station. We didn’t have to go far. It is right on the river with a great view! Our drive today was 248 miles in 5 hours.
The campground is very nice and similar to other Corps of Engineer campgrounds that we have been to in Florida and other states. Each site has a covered picnic table and paved parking pads for the bus and the Jeep.
I was really happy that Auggie finally has some grass to enjoy! He and I sat outside after we arrived. I enjoyed a cocktail before dinner and he enjoyed rolling around in the grass. It was quite warm today with a high temp of 97 and no wind to speak of, so we waited until it cooled off a little before taking our evening walk. The low tonight is supposed to get down to 58 which will be greatly appreciated. We noticed when we took our walk that the tow had moved inside the chamber of the lock. He may be gone in the morning when we get up.
We got back from our walk and sat outside to watch a movie. It was a very pleasant evening.
We are here for 2 nights, so we’ll get to check out more of the campground, the river, and the dam tomorrow.