The Ouachita Mountains are found in west central Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma on both sides of the Arkansas River. The mountains were first traversed in the age of European discovery by Hernando de Soto in 1541. The name "Ouachita" is French for "good hunting grounds."
The Fourche Mountains are located within the Ouachitas, as are a number of other geological features including the Novaculite Uplift and the Athens Piedmont Plateau. The mountains most often run from west to east with valleys between them. Several reservoirs dot the landscape: Nimrod Lake, Lake DeGray, Blue Mountain Lake, and Lake Ouachita among them.
- Gerald T. Hanson and Carl H. Moneyhon, Historical Atlas of Arkansas (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1989), 5.