Mountain Biking at Devil’s Den State Park: Home Of Impressive Rock Formations

Mountain bike propped up against rock in front of bowl-shaped rock formation at Devil's Den State Park in Arkansas

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Out of all the places I’ve mountain biked in Arkansas (and honestly around the United States – which is a lot!) Devil’s Den State Park is one of my favorite places to ride.

The rock features and landscape are so beautiful and unique and the riding has a good mix of tech and flow as well as climbing and descending.

Devil’s Den is part of Arkansas’s Monument Trail System, which has been created to bring world-class mountain bike trails to Arkansas State Park – they’ve succeeded!

The campground is right on a scenic river and there are a number of other fun things to do in the park if you want to stay for a few days (or more).

Whenever I find myself in Arkansas, Devil’s Den is a place I make sure to revisit because it’s just so cool. In this post, I share everything you need to know about mountain biking in Devil’s Den State Park.

Let’s ride!

Getting there & where to park

Devil’s Den State Park is located in Northwest Arkansas about 30 minutes south of Fayetteville or 50 minutes south of ‘The Mountain Bike Capital of the World’ – Bentonville.

Whether you’re coming from the north or south, you’ll access it via Route 49.

The drive into Devil’s Den State Park from the east on W Devil’s Den Drive is very windy and steep. If you have a trailer or long RV you’ll want to enter the park on the west side.

For parking, there are several parking areas that access the trails. If you do my recommended route below, you can park at the start/end of Devil’s Racetrack (directions here).

Another popular place to park is Campground A, which has quick access to the trails (directions here).

Watch BKXC explore Devil’s Den

Important Things to Know

Mountain biking at Devil’s Den State Park is awesome, but there are a few things to know before hitting the trails:

  • No cell service: Devil’s Den is located down in a gulch. There is no (or very limited) cell service.
  • W Devil’s Den Drive is very windy: Do not take your trailer or long RV down W Devil’s Den Drive (Route 74). You can access the park on less windy roads on the west side (Route 170).
  • Share the trails: Devil’s Den is a popular place for hikers, especially the Devil’s Racetrack trail. Please be kind and courteous and share the trails.
  • River crossing: There is a river crossing at the end of Fossil Flats Loop to get back over to the campground and Devil’s Racetrack Trail. Depending on water levels, you may be able to ride through it. You might also get your feet wet. You shouldn’t not be able to cross it.
Shallow river at Devil's Den State Park in Arkansas
This was the river crossing the first time I visited Devil’s Den. It was quite a bit higher on my second visit.

Trail Guide & Route Recommendation

Devil’s Den has about 25 miles of singletrack trail, but not all of that is open to mountain bikers nor worth riding, especially if you only have a day.

The three must-ride trails (in my opinion) are:

  • Devil’s Racetrack
  • We Can Take It
  • Orville

The route recommendation below includes these three trails and the best way to link them up.

Mountain bike on singletrack trail routed through rock bowl feature in Devil's Den State Park in Arkansas

Devil’s Den State Park Trail Map

Route recommendation

>> Devil’s Den Highlights

This is my go-to route at Devil’s Den. There is a fair amount of climbing, but the trails are built really well so it doesn’t ever feel too hard. You can cut out some climbing by taking the paved road at the start.

  • Route difficulty: Intermediate
  • Route type: Lollipop
  • E-bikes? Yes
  • Mileage: 14.1 miles
  • Elevation gain/loss: 1,808 ft
  • Map/GPS: TrailForks

Route directions: Devil’s Racetrack Parking (or start from your campsite) > Devil’s Racetrack > Fossil Flats Loop > Dollar A Day > All You Can Eat > Racer’s Hill (briefly) > We Can Take It > Sparky > Orville >

Route notes: Take your time on this route to really appreciate all the trail work and natural rock features.

Make it easier: If you want to cut out some climbing, you can take the paved road from the parking area instead of climbing up Devil’s Racetrack (which honestly isn’t that bad). There are several places where you can jump back onto the trail.

Do more: If you have another climb in you, climb up the We Can Take It switchbacks after finishing Orville then descend Sparky, another fast, flowy downhill.

Mountain bike propped up against limestone cliff wall overhang on trail in Devil's Den State Park in Arkansas
Devil’s Racetrack is a must!

Camping at Devil’s Den State Park

Devil’s Den State Park has a great campground and several other lodging options.

The campground has 135 sites, including 8 hike/bike-in only as well as full-service cabins with kitchens and bathrooms and rustic ‘camper cabins’ with no facilities.

If you plan on camping, I recommend trying to get campsites 1 -23 since they are located closest to the mountain bike trails. There are bathrooms, showers, and a nice river to relax by post-ride.

Advanced reservations are highly recommended. You can book your campsite or cabin here.

Devil's Den State Park campground
The Devil’s Den State Park Campground is really nice. Try to get a site in the 1-23 loop. (Note that there is no cell service).

Other things to do around Devil’s Den State Park

If you have the time, I recommend adding a few days to relax and explore Devil’s Den. It’s a really beautiful state park with lots to offer off the bike.

Here are a few non-mountain biking things to do:

  • Hike: There are a number of trails in Devil’s Den that aren’t open to mountain bikers like Yellow Rock Trail. Moonshiners Cave Trail is another unique hike. It’s not technically in the park, but can be accessed via the Moonshiners Cave Trailhead. See more hiking opportunities here.
  • Backpack: The 16-mile Butterfield Trail can be done as a one-night backpacking trip by camping at one of the hike-in-only campsites.
  • Swim: There are lots of great swimming holes along Lee Creek that runs through the park
  • Fish: If you want to catch your dinner, fishing is allowed at Devil’s Den. You can catch up to five catfish and five trout per day.
  • Paddle: Bring your kayak, SUP, or canoe and paddle along the shores of Devil’s Lake or make your way down Lee Creek.
Mountain biker riding bike through rock cave on Devil's Racetrack trail in Devil's Den State Park

Final Thoughts

Out of the four Monument Trails in Arkansas, Devil’s Den one of my favorites (tied with Mt. Nebo) for its stunning limestone cliffs and rock features, amazing trail work, peaceful setting, and great mix of terrain.

If you have the time, I recommend spending at least 2 full days (or more!) at Devil’s Den State Park so you can really experience everything it has to offer.

Have fun!

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