Robbers Cave State Park: The Ultimate Guide

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Robbers Cave State Park is a stunning example of the untouched wilderness that exists in the Sooner State. This park offers everything from hiking and camping to fishing and swimming, making it the perfect destination for an outdoor adventure. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing weekend getaway or an exciting summer road trip, Robbers Cave State Park is definitely worth adding to your travel list!

Things to Do at Robbers Cave State Park

There are so many wonderful outdoor things to do here. Take your pick of hiking, camping, riding ATVs, horseback riding, and so much more.

Robbers Cave is a great place to get outside and enjoy the incredibly beautiful Sans Bois Mountains, a smaller range of the Ouachita Mountains in eastern Oklahoma.

Hiking

There are miles of trails at Robbers Cave State Park!

The most popular trail is hiking to Robbers Cave which was a hideout for wild west outlaws Jesse James and Belle Starr. It is worth visiting the park to see the cave and the rock formations along the trail.

Below are the most popular trails to hike.

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Hiking through the park

Robbers Cave Trail Details

  • Distance: 0.6-mile loop
  • Elevation Gain: 144’
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Time to Hike: 30 minutes to 1 hour
  • Highlights: Robbers cave, the rock formations, views of the Sans Bois Mountains

Belle Starr Loop Trail Details

  • Distance: 2.0-mile loop
  • Elevation Gain: 288’
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Time to Hike: 1 hour to an hour and a half
  • Highlights: Trail through the forest, views of the creek, look for the old pump house and wildlife

Coon Creek Ridge Trail Details

  • Distance: 2.0-mile loop
  • Elevation Gain: 193’
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Time to Hike: 45 minutes to one hour
  • Highlights: Views of Coon Creek Valley and the beautiful pines and hardwood forest

Rough Canyon Trail Details

  • Distance: 2.7-mile loop
  • Elevation Gain: 321’
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Time to Hike: 1 hour to 2 hours, depending on how long you want to stay at the cave area
  • Highlights: There are many rocky areas and lake views from the top of Buzzards Roost; the trail passes Robbers Cave and a few ponds.

Biking

Bring your own bike and bike around the paved roads and some of the trails.

Rappelling and Rock Climbing

If you are into rappelling or rock climbing, you can bring your gear to climb the rock faces here. The rocks are pretty impressive!

Swimming

There is a pool here.

Fishing

Visit the Oklahoma Wildlife Department to purchase a fishing license and see area-specific fishing regulations for the lakes nearby: Lake Carlton, Coon Creek Lake, and Lake Wayne Wallace.

Canoeing, Kayaking, or Paddle Boating at the Lake

Visitors can float and paddle the lake. Canoe, kayak, or paddle boat gear can be rented from the park seasonally.

Disc Golf

There is a disc golf area next to the lake.

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Views of the Sans Bois Mountains

Off-Roading

The park is known for its ATV area. It features a 250-acre ATV area. Bring your own rig and enjoy riding from 8 am until sunset.

Horseback Riding

If you’d like to go horseback riding, visit the Robbers Cave Stables to plan an equestrian adventure.

Camping

There are multiple areas to camp at the park, and many campsites have shade. There are camping options with full hookups.

You can make a reservation online before your stay.

If you’re pulling a camper, RV, or have a motorhome, it is recommended that you go directly to your campsite so you don’t have trouble navigating some of the roads.

Glamping

If you’d like to level up from tent camping and try a fun glamping experience, there are a few yurts to rent, or you can stay in a covered wagon.

Make reservations online to stay in a yurt.

Lodging

If camping or glamping isn’t your thing, don’t worry. The park just opened up a fabulous new lodge! Make reservations for the lodge online.

You can also rent rustic park cabins for your weekend getaway.

Where is Robbers Cave?

The park is located 5 miles north of Wilburton, Oklahoma, off of State Highway 2.

It is located in a rural area. Cell phone reception is limited.

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Trails through the forest

Other Information

Fees

  • Costs with Oklahoma license plates: $8
  • Prices with non-Oklahoma license plates: $10

If camping, the parking fee is included in the camping reservation.

Pets

Dogs are allowed on the trails and in the campground. They are required to be on a leash.

Pets are also allowed in certain cabins.

Best Time to Visit

The park is open year-round to visit. Spring is an excellent time to enjoy hiking and camping while the forest begins to green up after the winter. Summers can be hot in Oklahoma, but you can find quite a bit of shade at the park, so it’s still worth visiting if you don’t mind the heat. Fall is one of the best times to enjoy the Ouachita Mountains and see the fall foliage. Winters are mild and an excellent time to hike. But the foliage won’t be as vibrant.

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Exploring the park

Final Thoughts

Robbers Cave State Park is one of Oklahoma’s most beautiful state parks. Along with its unique history, the park makes for a fun adventure. It is an excellent place for friends, families with kids, and couples looking to get out and about in nature on the weekend. So, plan a scenic road trip to Robbers Cave. Have fun!


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top photo: couple hiking Robbers Cave Trail; bottom photo: couple hiking through the rocks

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Ashlee Fechino

Ashlee Fechino is an outdoor recreation and travel writer and founder of The Happiness Function. Her goal is to help inspire people to build a life they love by sharing how simple and fun it is to travel locally, connect with nature, and explore off-the-beaten-path. You don't have to spend a lot of money or use a ton of vacation time to explore close to home. Ashlee holds a BS degree in Biology and MS in Environmental Policy & Sustainability and is passionate about the outdoors. She is married to an expat Argentine, Pablo! They camp in their Aliner often and love road trips and hiking.

2 Comments

  1. Burt Randall on October 20, 2022 at 2:34 pm

    The camping and bike riding sounds like fun !!

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