Lifelong Arkansawyer here.
On 2014, I contracted Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever from a tick in my backyard in Little Rock.
We had a string of 3 years with no real, "winter' (ice, hard freeze, etc). They were SO bad over the last few years. But here in LR, we had significant snow and super cold Temps (for here).
I've been out in my back acreage clearing new and cleaning old trails. So far, I haven't seen a single tick. So, it looks like winter really helped this year.