Friday, June 26, 2015

Petit Jean

Petit Jean State Park is named after an actual person who is said to be buried at the top of the mountain. The legend as recounted on Wikipedia:
According to legend Petit Jean was actually a young 18th century French woman. When she discovered that her fiance planned to explore the Louisiana Territory, she cut her hair, disguised herself as a boy and managed to find a position as a cabin boy. She survived the voyage and joined the expedition team for their exploration. Once they had reached the area of the mountain, the young woman became ill. On her deathbed she revealed herself to her fiance and was buried on the mountain -not under her own name, but under the name she had been known by on the ship "Little John".
The gravesite:

The view from the overlook:

That's the Arkansas River down there:

There's a boardwalk along the ridge, and the views on all sides are stunning:

There's a designated wildflower area and the remains of one of the old Civilian Conservation Corps buildings:

This was one of the more easily accessible spots, wonderful views with little physical effort.


  1. Gosh, the Arkansas River is as muddy in Arkansas as it is in KS. As an aside, we call it the Ar Kansas not the Ark An Saw.

    Nice story and lovely, lovely breathtaking views. The view on the opposite side of the river looks like a patchwork quilt. It's all really gorgeous. Thanks for sharing this. I kept thinking "so close, yet so far away."

    1. I've gotten to where I don't want to spend a long time in the car, so if I can't get there in under 3 hours my interest fades. And for day trips, I want to get there in under an hour and a half. I'm glad there are so many places that close to me, but I'll run out of them eventually lol.

  2. What wonderful views. I enjoyed the story of Petit Jean as well.


  3. What a touching story - makes you think this Petit Jean was a really special character, to live with and earn the respect of an all-men crew for all those months. Weird the fiancĂ© didn´t recognize her sooner, but perhaps you didn´t look very closely at a cabin boy. If it is entirely true, of course, but I want it to be. Such beautiful views! You are lucky to live in an area with such majestic landscapes.

    1. I want it to be true. I think it'd make a good movie.

      This place is around 3 hours from us, and they are the closest mountains. Here in the Delta, we get majestic views of the Mississippi River, but the only high overlooks we have are from the tops of buildings lol

    2. Well, a three hour drive from you, that is "in your area" from my perspective! lol