6 votes

Catalpa Swinging Bridge


Catalpa Swinging Bridge

photo from north bank looking downstream.

Photo taken by J Randall Houp, December 23, 2011


BH Photo #225487



Famous swinging foot bridge spanning the Mulberry River between Oark and Catalpa in northern Johnson County. Original bridge I was told was built in the 1930s or 1940s. Washed out several times through the years from numerous floods. Beautiful location and with a lot of great scenery around. Privately built bridge with sign attached that reads, "Use At Own Risk", and a small box for donations for the upkeep of the bridge. Well worth the visit with 2 really good country cafes nearby; The Ozark Cafe and the Catalpa Cafe. Found this bridge many years ago, but it took me until 2011 to finally get the photos I wanted.


Suspension footbridge over Mulberry River
Johnson County, Arkansas
Destroyed by flooding
Washed out 2014; Rebuilt; Washed out 2017
Wire suspension
Approximate latitude, longitude
+35.68858, -93.53185   (decimal degrees)
35°41'19" N, 93°31'55" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/451877/3949538 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Inventory number
BH 51325 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • February 18, 2012: Added by J Randall Houp


  • J. Randall Houp


Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted November 9, 2019, by Michele Waugh (wmichele79 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Has this been rebuilt since the 2017 flood? Itís a very beautiful place and the bridge looked like it would be fun crossing

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted July 7, 2018, by Sunny O'Neal (psfla [at] yahoo [dot] com)

7-7-18 Is the bridge intact now ? Is it near County Road 36 ?

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted February 7, 2017, by Brandon (bjones [at] fortsmithschools [dot] org)

Ok, thanks. Is it pretty much right off the main road?

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted January 26, 2017, by Anonymous

My best guess is Oark, Arkansas (Hwy 215 or 103). Once you go past the country store it becomes county maintained CR 5440. Looks like 2 1/2 miles

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted January 26, 2017, by Brandon

What are the directions to the bridge?

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted January 2, 2017, by Earl Sinclair (justin [dot] wade [dot] culpepper [at] okstate [dot] edu)

It's up, but you cannot reach the opposite bank. I was out there last year and it's solid about 3/4 of the way across.

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted November 17, 2016, by Maribeth (miller [dot] maribeth [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Has this bridge been rebuilt again? Is it up now?

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted January 1, 2016, by Claire Dougan (moonhullmtn [at] gmail [dot] com)

Hi! The swinging bridge washed out again December, 2015, after just being rebuilt. To rebuild again, the family desperately needs significant engineering work and as much support as they can get from everyone who has ever enjoyed this bridge. They are a wonderful family whom I have known for many years. They have overcome many obstacles, and have always cheerfully shared their bridge (and parking area) with all comers, but they really do need help now. Cammie Johnson, one of the daughters, has started a gofundme page at https://www.gofundme.com/8rgrdw3w to help collect the money needed to rebuild. I encourage anyone who has ever enjoyed this bridge, or would like to see it rebuilt to please help them if you are at all able to. C. Dougan

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted September 8, 2015, by Travis Stephens (travis [at] clarksvillear [dot] org)

The bridge has been rebuilt. Bigger and better than ever.

Catalpa Swinging Bridge
Posted August 24, 2014, by Kimberly Schutzenhofer (KSchutzenh [at] aol [dot] com)

As of 8/22/14 the bridge is washed out. Made a trip from St. Louis just to see it and it was gone. They said it was washed out about a month before I made the trip. Disappointed but I met some really cool people in the little town.