Sicily Island Hills

While driving home from Monroe I decided to take a short side trip over to the Sicily Island Hills to check out a really unique part of Louisiana – it’s the type of place that makes a Geography major giddy.  The Sicily Island Hills are in the northeastern part of Catahoula Parish, they lie in the Ouachita River Alluvial Plain.  They are a series of chalk hills that are an erosional remnant of Catahoula sandstone, lying east of the Ouachita River.  With elevations rising to 245 ft, these are the only hills you will find west of the Mississippi River and east of the Ouachita.  In that sense they are unique, quite the geographic outlier.  With their uniqueness comes unique flora as well, this is one of the few places I’ve seen wild flowering dogwood in Louisiana.  It was cool to finally get a chance to check the area out for myself.  Accessing the WMA from Hwy 8, a short ride on a gravel rode had me at a trailhead for the Rock Falls Nature Trail and I was up for a short hike.

Rock Falls itself is not super impressive, until you realize you are looking at a waterfall in Louisiana, with actual boulders/rocks in the creekbed, which is something we don’t see very often down here.  So relatively speaking, it may be impressive to some.  I enjoyed my short side trip to the Sicily Island Hills, next time I’ll explore the northern access off of Hwy 915.  There are more falls on that end, an even longer hiking trail (~7 miles) and I’m sure I could find a few fish in the creek.

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5 comments
  1. Bill Ellingham said:

    How far of a hike is it?

  2. To the falls? Less than a mile for sure.

  3. Sharon said:

    My cousin said this is nice for tent camping. How would I get there? I’m not from la. Any advise?

    • Type in Sicily Island, LA in your GPS and start driving. Here is a map of the WMA: http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/wma/2762-j-c-sonny-gilbert-wma/jcsonnygilbert.pdf. There is a campground on Hwy 8 and Hwy 915 – the trail to Rock Falls is off of Hwy 8.

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