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It sure is hot in Arkansas!

No, we mean, like, really hot with sometimes triple-digit heat waves in the summer that have many Arkansas residents literally running for the hills!

Luckily, the Ozarks and Ouachita are the cool, friendly mountains of Arkansas. These gentle peaks are home to many rivers and lakes, which explains the spectacular scenery - not to mention swimming, fishing, boating, and other fun activities to enjoy during a summer that often lasts 5 months long.

Did we also mention snorkeling at DeGray Lake? Other top Arkansas state parks with top swimming beaches include Lake Catherine, Lake Charles, Lake Dardanelle and Ouachita, Village Creek, Woolly Hollow and Crowley's Ridge.

But don't assume you have to travel to the backwoods for some of the best lake beach swimming in the state. In Hot Springs, for example, you can find Hill Wheatley Park on Lake Hamilton, Lake Leatherwood City Park in Eureka Springs, and Beaverfork Lake in Conway.

Beating the heat at DeGray Lake

When traveling throughout Arkansas remember that some remote beaches and popular swimming holes do not provide lifeguards, so (especially when traveling with kids) always choose to stay in a designated swimming beach area or swim with a group away from boats and other water craft.

Be cool. And have fun....

DID YOU KNOW? Arkansas beaches and lakes fun facts:

• Surrounded by the Ouchita National Forest, Lake Ouchita is the largest lake in Arkansas with 975 miles of shoreline for swimming, fishing and boating. It also also regularly ranks as one of the cleanest lakes in the USA.

• Despite being landlocked, Arkansas has a wealth of natural white sandy beaches. Prime locations include Sandy Beach at Heber Springs and Norfolk Lake in the Arkansas Ozarks (and safe from sharks and jellyfish!)

More about Arkansas beaches and lakes around the Web:

Arkansas Swim Beaches - A great guide from the official state tourism site with photos and information and special focus on locating swimming beaches by region including the Ozarks, Ouachitas, Arkansas River Valley, the Delta, and central Arkansas.

Swimming Holes in Arkansas - Lovely survey with facts and photos of swimming holes for a summer splash in Arkansas state parks, with related resources to more information on swimming lakes and sandy beaches throughout Arkansas.



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