Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Driskill Mountain, LOUISIANA (State High Point #31), 3/22/2019

Driskill Mountain, Louisiana (535'), March 22, 2019.

Mileage: 1.85 miles RT

Elevation gain: 121' 

Directions: The trailhead to the summit of Driskill Mountain is located in Bienville Parish, Louisiana.  The easiest way to find directions is to Google "Mt. Zion Presbyterian Church, Bienville, LA." From Ruston, take US 80-W to LA 507 South; the church (and Driskill Cemetery) is on this road.  Parking is at the church.

The trails described here are on private land, please be respectful of this.

Sandy and I drove the six hours from Magazine Mountain, Arkansas' highpoint (see trip report) to Ruston, Louisiana where we stayed the night. We drove past forests of tall pines adjacent to acres of stripped land.  Logging is big here; we'd pass the trucks hoping they'd stay in their lanes (they did) and the loads wouldn't shift while we did so (they didn't).  

Parking is in the church lot in front of the cemetery fence.  We were the only ones there but by the time we left there were several other cars in the lot; apparently this is a favorite spot for local families.

The church and cemetery.

LOTS of Driskills buried in the cemetery!

Sign is on near the road - easy to spot.

Avoid hiking here during hunting season (Nov/Dec).

I'd read that finding this highpoint could be tricky as the route is not well marked so I brought Don Holmes' highpointing book with me for directions.  

I didn't need it.

Each turn and option was met with clear signage. James Driskill's great great granddaughter Melba had installed signs and painted trees with interesting circles and bands to point the way. 

Gate at the beginning, go through it.

A road walk is first, followed by a slight left turn, all signed.  We opted to get there via the false summit, and return the standard route - 1.85 miles of walking.

The area is pretty wet - my shoes are orange from the mud.

"Designated trail."

False summit route is more of a path; the direct route is old road.

Lots of blazing!

The highpoint is marked with a sign and register (pictured below), along with a large cairn and three chunks of wood with pins in them.  


We couldn't find a USGS marker but did find a county marker further down the path (the path continues left of the sign).

County marker.

When facing the Driskill Mountain sign, look left and you will see benches for the overlook of Jordan Mountain - a nice place to rest and reflect. 

Back to the car.

We arrived back at the car before noon, pointed the car east and headed to Mississippi (trip report is here).