"Where do you want to go today?" Hmmm . . . "How about a side road?" So, we checked a map!! A dirt road leading to Gunner Pond? How can you go wrong with a name like that. Plus, it loops around to Barkshead Recreation before getting back on pavement!! We were in! Turned into a very nice day, albeit a bit longer than we expected. We could see just a bit of fall color, just enough to keep us parked in the area. The loop we drove is part of the Ozark St. Francis National Forest.
In case you want to go . . . we started at Mountain View, took Highway 187 to Highway 14. Turn left and just beyond Fifty Six take Gunner Pond Road (FR 1102) left to the creek. Park just before the bridge (bathrooms at the parking lot and no cell phone service). Then proceed further on 1102 to FR 113 and take a left for a short distance to FR 1112. Take another left onto FR 1112 toward Barkshead Recreation Area. It appears you can park just about anywhere near the taller bridge. Once done there proceed on to an intersection where you can continue on FR 1112 (to your right) or take FR 1115. Both take you back to Highway 14. FR 1115 is a shorter return and continuation of FR 1112 puts you much closer to a liquor store on Highway 14. Mountain View is located in a dry county, so depending on your wine stash you may prefer to continue on FR 1112. The highway portions are two lane paved roads. Plan on spending a full day to complete the whole loop.