Turner Falls State Park
Turner Falls state park is a wonderful place for a family adventure. Located in the Arbuckle Mountains in Davis, Oklahoma, Turner Falls is a popular landmark. The Arbuckle Mountains create breathtaking waterfalls and natural swimming pools. Picnic areas are settled in serene locations, perfect for grabbing a bite after a long hike and novelty shops offer an exciting collection of park souvenirs.
Turner Falls State Park is the oldest park in Oklahoma. It has served as a national tourist attraction since 1868. The waters of Honey Creek cascade down the 77-foot waterfall, which is the largest in Oklahoma, and the natural geological sights attract enthusiasts from all around the globe who are trying to discover insights and clues to the earth’s past.
The scenery of the park is amazing. It has unique swimming areas rarely created in nature. Sandy beaches coupled with high mountains set the tone for the rich oasis of hiking trails, underground caves, geological wonders, wading pools and gorgeous landscaping. The park covers over 1,500 acres. The entire area is open to the public to explore. Little ones can fly kites in the windy plains, families can search for unique rocks and even the family dog can explore the caves, if he’s on a leash.
The intricately designed rock castle is a famous landmark of the park. According to Lin Stone, author of “Turner Falls,” over 10 miles of stonework was involved in the creation of the castle. Stone walls, rooms, floors and stairs are formed from large rock pieces. The castle is so well built that no gaps exist. The castle was imagined by Dr. Ellsworth Collings, who organized its creation in the 1930s. The castle itself is extremely large, but it also comes with a guest rock house and a garage. Stone says the entire rock fortress is rumored to have been created using convict labor.
Turner Falls is a wonderful place to stay and spend days exploring the park. Camp sites are available for motor homes and individual cabins nestled in the woods are open to renters. The 12 cabins in the state park easily house four people and rates start at $130 a night which includes park admission. The cabins have an open floor plan with a stove, small refrigerator, futon, kitchen table with four chairs and two full-sized beds. All units have heat and air systems and full bathrooms.
According to the Turner Falls Park website, the area has been described as one of three geological windows into the earth’s past. The other two areas are the Grand Canyon and the Black Hills of South Dakota. The rocks are extremely old and layered with water-filled crevices, making them look as if they are shedding watery tears. Caves along the park provide even more geological information. The stalactites and stalagmites tell a long story about the cave’s formation and how the area evolved.