“Take A Hike” is a weekly series that examines diversity in the outdoors. In each installment, we’ll highlight one of the Natural State’s 52 state parks and talk to BIPOC Arkansans about what they enjoy about spending time in nature.
"I love being near water when outdoors. It brings me happiness and peace. I also love being removed from the fast paced activities of everyday life and listening to all the birds."
Name: Zhana Gentle
Hometown: El Dorado, Arkansas
Currently Lives In: Bentonville, Arkansas
Occupation: Process Lead II, Walmart and Registered Yoga Teacher, Cocoon Yoga Lab
Favorite Outdoor Space: Ever — La Fortuna Waterfall in Costa Rica
In Arkansas — Falls Creek Falls at Lake Catherine State Park
What’s one outdoor place you want to explore, but haven’t yet?
Glory Hole Waterfall Trail. The pictures I’ve seen are so beautiful. Waterfalls are always a beautiful sight to experience.
What do you enjoy about the outdoors?
I love being near water when outdoors. It brings me happiness and peace. I also love being removed from the fast-paced activities of everyday life and listening to all the birds. I can even get this calming effect by walking through trails on the outskirts of town.
What’s your favorite outdoor activity?
Meditating by any flowing body of water is top of my list. Allows me to really connect with myself and have gratitude for my life and all that is around me.
What advice or encouragement would you give someone who wants to incorporate more outdoor activities into their lifestyle?
Try as many outdoor activities as possible — biking, hiking, walking, yoga, swimming or even rafting. Try it all. You may be surprised by which activity truly resonates with you. Maybe start slow and build up to different activities. Just start adding more outdoor time to your day and you’ll feel a difference in your mood.
ABOUT THE PARK
Millwood State Park is the place for serious bass fishing. A series of boat lanes meanders through submerged timber, marshes and oxbow cutoffs making Millwood Lake an outstanding fishing destination. This 29,260-acre lake abounds in largemouth bass, catfish and crappie. Birding is also popular at this Audubon-designated Important Bird Area with sightings of more than 300 of the state’s 400 species on record.
The park features 45 campsites (27 Class AAA, 2 Class A, 13 Class B, and three primitive tent sites). The camping is relaxed and quiet. Nearby are picnic sites plus a self-guided walking trail and a bicycle trail. A marina offers gift items, groceries, bait, gas for sale, rental fishing boats, canoes, kayaks and more.