Explore Jan - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Lovely hike for a mid-summer hike! The trail was balanced with both hills and flat areas. The trail is gravel/dirt and narrow with overgrown brush in areas. Most of the trail is shaded. We saw countless elk, deer, and turkey along the trail. At times we had to take an alternate route to avoid disturbing the wildlife on the trail. We inspected ourselves after the hike and found we were covered in hundreds of seed ticks on us despite DEET insect repellent. We drove through the bison area but didn’t have any sightings. We will return again soon!

backpacking
13 days ago

Loved this trail. Lots to see and explore. Very rocky but hey what's a trail adventure if it's flat and smooth... I will be back had a blast!

hiking
15 days ago

Wonderful wooded trail with a couple of glades. The waterfall was dry as expected for August in Missouri. The loop trail descends toward the waterfall and then ascends back to the trailhead and is extremely rocky so ankle support is recommended. There are a couple of scenic overlooks including one that looks at the new Ameren Upper Reservoir that was built to replace the one that failed in 2005.

artsy :)

Hike this with my husband and 4 young sons ages 6-11. We LOVED this hike even though the falls were dry. The views are amazing. I would suggest to being extra water if you plan on staying. We were there 4 hours and each drank 5 bottles of water because of the incline and the amount of playing we did at the falls. Overall great hike! You will need good shoes and keep going till you get to the end. Hiked in August.

One of my girlfriend and I's favorite place to go :) Lots of views and you can see alot of deer on the lower levels. highly recommend for anyone, friendly for all ages

First hike, great experience! Panoramic views. We started at the east and ascended via the stairs. They are well maintained and really get the blood pumping. A few more inclines made for a great hike. Cooled down with the Meramec river trail.

First 1/4 to 1/2 mile a little tough but rest of trail easy enjoyable

Second review of this trail! Last one was during the dry season, which I gave a 4/5. During the wet season it gets a 5/5 because the waterfall is actually there and is beautiful!
Also I didn't miss the sharp turn this time and got to see a bit of the trail that I didn't last time lol

Great kids trail, not too long and super pretty surroundings. Can get a little steep but over all easy walk. Short. There is a center there that is WONDERFUL inside. Great nature center.

Awesome trek. Deer, turkey, elk and mostly wooded.

Great views and photo opportunities

Very easy, short walk. Would not consider this a “hike.” Plenty of places to sit or stop to take in the art. Currently only accessible from 270. Be sure to check out the abandoned swimming pool from the 1920s.

Amazing views all around this trail! As a big dude the end is tough but extremely rewarding!

Great trail for kids! The beginning of the trail is a little exhausting if you aren’t used to elevation, but the rest is easy breezy! Beautiful views and photo opps. Lots of puppers on the trail so be on alert if your dog isn’t used to making friends.

I thought this trail was pretty cool. Visited it twice, 1st time didn’t have enough time to hike it fully which was a shame because the second time was very dry. The water fall was not a waterfall. It was supposed to be 135 ft waterfall. It was still beautiful country tho. Tough for someone less experienced I think. Lots of rock and elevation. 106 heat index when my group trekked it. Still it had a few areas to filter water and plenty of shade.

Good trail for even inexperienced day hikers. It for sure takes 2 hours with a small group and 30m at the falls. No chance of getting lost if you look for the red blazes on the trees.

nature trips
1 month ago

Loved the River Scene Trail and the rugged path at the beginning of the hike. Bathrooms at the park were pristine clean. Very enjoyable!

Good hike. I thought I would mention in this app to stay at least 100 ft from the elk. There were several on the trail. People have been gored by the elk, granted one group was trying to take a selfie with the elk so some are related to clueless hikers. Be extra careful during mating season which is mid-August through December when the elk are particularly aggressive.

Very nice walk through the Elk’s habitat. The trail is a nice gravel and dirt path, shaded, and well marked. We were able to observe many elk grazing and laying around along with many varieties of birds.
You are also able to see the bison but only from your car as they are in a different part of the park.

trail running
1 month ago

Great for a flat run. I live close by so I got this trail often. More than half the trail is paved and the rest is tightly packed, small gravel so nothing difficult about this one. it's usually busy but is wide enough to pass walkers with ease.

road biking
1 month ago

I absolutely love this trail to bicycle on. It can get crowded but everyone uses trail etiquette. the lake is beautiful to see at sunset.

Loved this trail. Hiked it with the family on a Saturday. Great views and the falls were awesome.!

Very heavily congested trail. The scenery is lovely and it's a peaceful hike around the lake, but you will constantly be dodging joggers, bikers, strollers, children, and pretty much everyone. I suggest going early morning or late evening, good times for quiet and to watch the sunrise/sunset.

Would definitely not rate this as “Moderate.” The trail is very well marked and relatively easy. Great views from the bluff & alone the river. Crowded on the weekend, but that’s to be expected.

long trail down hill for a trickle....bad time of year

One of the best hikes I’ve had outside of a National Park! Not only games for the highest peak or the tallest waterfall in Missouri but this area is geologically older than the Rockies or the Appalachian Mountains, in fact, scientists say these Precambrian Volcanoes were volcanic islands when most of the US was a sea! I just love history and thus region has plenty!
The waterfall was only a trickle but the vistas, flora, fauna, & exploring opportunities totally make up for it. The hike is moderately technical or difficult especially if you climb down to the bottom of the falls and back. There are lots of rocks in the trail, some are even scrambles I suppose and sure footing is a must to avoid twisting an ankle (or worse). There are a few great places along the trail to rest and take in the views and many more trail side rocks to sit on but beware of snakes as they love to hang out under the cool rocks. We didn’t see any snakes but we did see two Collared Lizards, several Skinks, a few Tree Frogs and several different species of Butterfly. The bugs were thick in spots so bring extra repellent (always).
An added bonus is the plethora of trails, local history & areas with a wide variety of geologic interest that surrounds these mountains so there’s plenty to do, I’ve spent 7 days here and wish I had 7 more!

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