Outdoor Adventures in the 2024 Eclipse Totality Zone

The total solar eclipse of 2024 is the perfect excuse to go on an exciting outdoor adventure in Oklahoma. Whether you love floating the river, fishing on the lake or hiking forest trails, you'll find the thrills you're looking for in southeastern Oklahoma.

Enjoy fishing, kayaking, birdwatching and more at Broken Bow Lake.

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Travelers to the state's eclipse totality zone will find plenty of things to do while they await the big event. The area's lakes and rivers offer great destinations for fishing, kayaking and canoeing, while the surrounding forests offer hiking, birdwatching and even ziplining opportunities. Start building your eclipse trip bucket list with these attractions suitable for any outdoor enthusiast.


Oklahoma is home to several lakes and streams suited for beginner fishing enthusiasts and seasoned anglers alike. Catch largemouth bass, walleye and striped bass from the shores of Broken Bow Lake or reel in rainbow trout from the waters of the Lower Mountain Fork River. Both Hugo Lake and Valliant's Pine Creek Lake offer an abundance of crappie, catfish and sand bass or anglers can cast their lines to catch bluegill, white bass and smallmouth bass from Lake Wister.

If you prefer a guided excursion, let an experienced guide service take you out on a memorable fishing trip. The expert fishermen of Broken Bow Trout Guide Service and Tied 2 Fly offer trout fishing trips along the Lower Mountain Fork River tailored to each guest's level of experience. Visitors to Broken Bow Lake can load up on a boat with B's Guide Service, Mike's Crappie Guide Service or Broken Bow Lake Guide Service for a relaxing day spent reeling in walleye, crappie and bass.

Canoeing & Kayaking

Spend a day floating on the water with a canoe, kayak or paddleboard from one of southeastern Oklahoma's many water sports rental services. PaddleSUP, located on the shores of Broken Bow Lake, offers stand-up paddleboard and kayak trips in addition to lessons for beginners. Both seasoned paddleboarders and water sports newbies will enjoy paddling across the crystal blue waters of the lake.

The Lower Mountain Fork River, a portion of which runs through Beavers Bend State Park, is one of southeastern Oklahoma's most popular destinations for canoeing and kayaking. Rent a boat and embark on a pre-planned float trip customized to your experience level from one of the many paddle boat outfitters in the area like Tippa Canoe, Yippie Kayo Kayaks and Canoes, Ambush Adventures Kayak Rental or Wild Goose Canoe and Kayak Rentals.

Outdoor Sporting

McCurtain County offers a variety of unique sporting experiences from ziplining to off-roading. Soar over Broken Bow's Beavers Bend State Park with a two-hour, guided ziplining tour from Rugaru Adventures or get an even higher view of the landscape with a private tour from Broken Bow Balloon Rides.

Break away from the beaten path with a rental from Captain's Hideaway Powersports in Broken Bow. The ATV and UTV outfitter offers everything you need for an afternoon of off-roading. Take a Jeep, Polaris Ranger 900 or Kawasaki Teryx LE 1000 for a self-guided ride on the dirt trails surrounding the Ouachita Mountains.

Animal Encounters

From mini donkeys to towering elephants, animals of all kinds can be found in the towns of Hugo and Rattan. Head to Hugo's remarkable Endangered Ark Foundation to meet America's second-largest herd of Asian elephants. The unique preserve offers guided tours where visitors can meet the gentle giants and learn about elephant conservation efforts.

Hugo is also home to Growler Pines Tiger Preserve, a sizable sanctuary dedicated to tiger conservation. See the big cats up close during an hour-long tour of the facility complete with different demonstrations from the tigers and their knowledgeable handlers.

For a hands-on animal encounter, stop by the Buffalo Trails Petting Zoo located in Hugo. This Western-style attraction offers activities for the whole family including a petting zoo, ax-throwing, corn hole and more. Meet a pot-bellied pig or snap a photo with a miniature horse before trying out the other on-site activities.

East of Antlers, the Oklahoma Heritage Horse Sanctuary can be found in the town of Rattan. The open-air sanctuary is dedicated to the preservation of the Colonial Spanish Horse, also known as Oklahoma's Heritage Horse. Visit the sanctuary to see the horses living as naturally as possible on the plains.

Outdoor Trails

Whether you prefer hiking, biking or horseback riding, you'll find a picturesque trail to suit your needs in the totality zone. Ride on horseback through Broken Bow, bike along the trails of Beavers Bend State Park or trek through the scenic woods of Talihina for a beautiful day outdoors.

Skilled and novice horseback riders alike can take a guided journey through the scenic Ouachita Mountains with Riverman Trailrides in Broken Bow. Seasoned trail bosses will lead you on a tour of your chosen length through mountains and creeks where you can watch for wildlife. Visitors to Beavers Bend State Park can enjoy a one-hour horseback ride through the forest with Beavers Bend Depot and Trail Rides, which also offers one-of-a-kind train trips to nearby Wahoo Hill.

Lace up your hiking books and travel Talihina's Old Military Road Trail or Boardstand Trail for a hike surrounded by lush foliage. Old Military Road Trail traces the path of the historic Military Road that once passed through the area in the mid-19th century. The intermediate-level route runs between six and a half to eight miles and is intersected by numerous other trails including the nine-mile Boardstand Trail. Branch off on the Boardstand Trail for an expert-level hike with difficult terrain and stunning views of the surrounding hills.

Forests & Wildlife Management Areas

Southeastern Oklahoma is home to the expansive Ouachita National Forest which offers both picturesque views and watchable wildlife. Travel to the Winding Stair Recreation Area, situated atop Winding Stair Mountain within the forest, for a beautiful view of the surrounding landscape. Within the Ouachita National Forest, the Red Slough Wildlife Management Area in Idabel boasts several species of animals. Bring along a camera and position yourself on one of nine observation platforms to spot species like the black-bellied whistling duck, wood stork or even the American alligator.

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