Ozark Highlands

White River valley, Ozark Highlands, northwestern Arkansas. Photo by Dee Ann Story.
Tall grass pocket within the oak savanna in the Illinois River Valley, southern Ozark Highlands, Benton County, Arkansas. Photo by George Sabo, III.

The Ozark Highland covers the northeastern periphery of the "Northern Caddoan Area" and is made up of mountainous areas and deeply-incised winding rivers and streams encompassed by the gently rolling Ozark Plateau. A subdivision of the Ozarks, the Boston Mountains, lie just north of the Arkansas Valley, are comparable in height and relief to the Ouachita Mountains, and are covered by oak-hickory forests. To the west it is drier and west and south-facing slopes are dominated by cedar and juniper. The flatter areas of the plateau are covered in oak savanna or prairie, particularly to the west. North of the Boston Mountains is the northeast-flowing White River and its many smaller tributaries, while the streams and small rivers that drain the southern flank of the Boston Mountains flow south and west toward the Arkansas River and its major tributaries. Hardwood forests occur within the narrow valleys.

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