The father-son vacation is a great American tradition, especially here in the South and Midwest, and McCurtain County offers myriad possibilities for a well-curated weekend getaway, whether your son is eight or 18. Here are five ways for fathers and sons to adventure and connect over the natural beauty of Beavers Bend.
Stake out a fishing spot
If “Father-son bonding experiences” were in the dictionary, fishing would be right up there with “playing catch” and “hunting.” McCurtain County is an angler’s dream, and the perfect place to connect over bait, tackle and a cool, clear stream. Fly fish for trout in the Mountain Fork River, or cast for bass in the depths of Broken Bow Lake—or do both in the same day. With multiple bodies of water and a variety of fish populating them, there’s plenty of opportunity for fishing lessons—and life lessons about patience.
Zip-line through the forest
Bond over adrenaline: If the pace of fishing is a little too deliberate for your son’s fast-paced city sensibilities, consider a zip-lining adventure. Think a rollercoaster ride, but through the forest and over a lake. Rugaru Adventures in Broken Bow offers a breathtaking zip-line tour, hitting a peak speed of 35 mph at heights of 60 feet. You’ll both feel like a modern Tarzan as you fly across six different zip lines ranging from 300 to 1,100 feet in length.
Search for Bigfoot
Children have been captivated by the myth of the Sasquatch for decades, and your son has likely heard of Bigfoot. If he hasn’t, get a campfire crackling and regale him with the tale of the elusive cryptid of the Kiamichis.
Hike or horseback into the woods
The next day, embark on a spooky hike into the forests of Beavers Bend State Park and marvel at the verdant wildlife, or hit the stables and plan an all-day excursion on horseback across the river trails.
Count the constellations
Remember when you were a kid, staring up at the night sky connecting the dots on Orion’s belt? Remember how well you knew the constellations? Unless you’re an astronomer, some of those memories have likely faded, and there’s a good chance your son has a thing or two to teach you about the star maps. Stargazing is one of the best things about a McCurtain County getaway—if you’re from the city, neither of you have ever seen the glowing brilliance of the galaxy like this before.
Explore the history
McCurtain is rich with heritage, with stories of outlaws and Indians, Old West mythology and early Oklahoma identity. This is the perfect opportunity to teach your son a few history lessons he might not learn in the classroom. With attractions like Creek patriot Chitto Harjo’s grave, the Wheelock Mission & Academy (Oklahoma’s oldest church, built in 1847), and Hungarian artist Peter Toth’s famous “Trail of Tears” Totem Pole, there’s plenty of opportunities to enrich his mind and expand his frame of reference.
Bask in the creature comforts of your cabin
Whether the sun is scorching or the rain is pouring, sometimes inclement weather puts a damper on outdoor plans. Thankfully, the luxury cabins in McCurtain County offer plenty of reasons to take a break from nature’s beauty and bond over familiar comforts: Wi-Fi service and televisions provide options for watching movies and playing video games, while the nearby fire pits make it easy to build a campfire at night, roast marshmallows and exchange ghost stories.
As Shakespeare said, “It is a wise father that knows his own child.” In McCurtain County, there are ample opportunities to get to know your son—and for your son to get to know you. Book a cabin and start planning your father-son getaway today.