Hemmed-In Hollow – Ponca Wilderness Area

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Another amazing site to see in the Buffalo National River area, is Hemmed-In Hollow, nestled within the Ponca Wilderness Area. It has the highest waterfall between the Appalachian and Rocky Mountains, cascading 210 ft over the bluff’s edge.  You can usually catch the falls with some water flowing over, but if you manage to visit after a nice storm, you’ll be in for quite a treat.  The waterfall can be accessed from multiple points including river access via the Buffalo River.  The river access is the easiest hike to get to the falls as it is the shortest with little elevation change.  It can also be accessed from the Compton Trailhead off of Hwy 43.  This is a very steep and strenuous hike that descends nearly 1,400 ft in a little over 2 miles.  Plan accordingly as the hike back up is no small task.

Area Details

Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult

Trail Length: 5 miles round trip

Location: 2hrs south of Springfield off Hwy. 43

Amenities: None

Pet Friendly: No

Kid Friendly: No

Best Use

Day Hikes
Backpacking

Best time to visit

Spring
Fall
Open Year-Round

Additional Information

Waterproof topo maps from National Geographic available in-store.

National Park Service

Get the gear you need to enjoy the trail.

Directions