We all need a break from the daily grind, and weekend getaways are ideal for recharging your batteries without using up your PTO or emptying your bank account. But even a modest road trip—say, to Austin—can cost enough to make you think twice about upending your weekend Netflix ritual for a few nights of noisy revelry on 6th Street. Besides, you don’t need a weekend of partying in the city, you need a vacation. You need to slow down and get away from the crowds, feel the fresh air and sunshine, laugh around a crackling campfire, take a dip in a river. You need to discover what’s around the Beavers Bend.
In 2017, Beavers Bend State Park was recognized as one of the fastest growing vacation spots in the nation. For years, this serene little corner of Southeastern Oklahoma has been a word-of-mouth gem, fiercely loved and evangelized by those in the know—with good reason. The rugged, scenic landscape of McCurtain County is anchored by majestic Broken Bow Lake and flanked by the forested, rolling hills of the Ouachita Mountains, the wilderness wetlands of the Red Slough, and charming rural communities like Broken Bow, Hochatown, and Idabel. It is, quite simply, one of the most beautiful spots in Oklahoma.
With its proximity to Dallas-Fort Worth and Oklahoma City—a brisk three-hour drive from DFW and four hours from OKC—and an array of rustic lodging options, McCurtain County is the perfect place for you and your friends to relax for a weekend. Still unsure? Here are five more reasons to escape with your friends to Beavers Bend.
The cabins are large, furnished and full of modern creature comforts.
Over half of the area cabins have three or more bedrooms, and most are equipped with perks like wi-fi, flatscreen televisions, hot tubs, firepits, and stocked kitchens. Whether it’s just you and your S/O on a romantic respite or your old college crew reunited for a bachelor party, McCurtain has a cabin to accommodate you.
There’s a growing craft beverage scene.
That’s right, McCurtain County is home to a distillery, two breweries, and four wineries. If you’re a hophead, wine connoisseur, spirits nerd or just a libations locavore, you’ll find plenty of tours, tastings and taprooms in the Hochatown/Broken Bow area. Secure a designated driver and plan to spend a day responsibly tasting the local drink. While you’re at it, keep your stomach full and your taste buds happy with a meal at one of the fantastic area eateries—like Grateful Head Pizza and Taproom, where you can devour a gourmet pie and local brew on a spacious outdoor patio.
The Instagram photo ops are endless.
Just look at these pictures. A weekend trip to Beavers Bend will be filled with moments of breathtaking beauty you’ll want to share with loved ones and cherish for years to come. Unlike those embarrassing brunch pics and fuzzy concert photos, you won’t feel the impulse to delete these later.
If you’re looking for a rush, you’ll find thrills to spare.
It’s true that things move at a slower pace around Beavers Bend, and if you’re seeking peace and quiet you’ve come to the right place. But the adrenaline junkies of your group will be right at home, too. Zip-line through a canopied forest, jet ski across the lake, ride horseback along a river bank, or off-road with an ATV or motorcycle.
A trip to McCurtain County is whatever you want it to be.
Maybe you’re looking for a purer exchange with nature—one slower and more meditative, one that doesn’t involve wi-fi, brewpubs, ATV adventures or Instagram posts. You want to bask, relax, and meditate away from the screens and amenities of civilization. In McCurtain County, you can hike for miles through the forest and pitch a tent for the night. You can birdwatch early morning in the wetlands of the Red Slough or trout fish for hours knee-deep in the Mountain Fork. Hunting options abound across the area, while Broken Bow Lake’s 14,000 surface acres provide plenty of room to float the day away in peace. The point is, a trip to McCurtain County is like a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure novel: You decide where the story goes and how it ends.