A trip to Castlewood State Park gives visitors a first-hand look at the area's glorious past. At the same time, the natural beauty of the Meramec River and the surrounding open spaces offer a serene escape from urban life. Between 1915 and 1940, thousands of St. Louis residents traveled by train each weekend to the Castlewood area for water fun, dancing and clubhouse partying. Today, the 1,818-acre Castlewood State Park preserves the history of the former resort. The park stretches for nearly five miles, straddling both sides of the Meramec River. It incorporates much of the old resort area, including the grand staircase that once led revelers up to the large hotels and clubs. Although the hotels and clubs are gone, the staircase and the lure of the region remain. Hike the River Scene Trail that ascends to the top of the majestic limestone bluffs towering above the river. Stand 250 feet below on the riverbank among the trees of the native floodplain forest. Angle for bluegill, largemouth bass and catfish in the cool waters of the Meramec River. Eat a relaxing lunch before strolling through meadows and along the spring-fed Kiefer Creek. The possibilities are endless and the choice is all yours.

hiking
11 days ago

Gorgeous trail, would easily be one of my favorites if it weren't for the high amount of foot traffic. If you're considering visiting Castlewood, go early during the week. This place is PACKED on weekends! Very scenic, dog-friendly (but PLEASE pick up after your dog and keep it on-leash). Can be muddy in spots. Lots of little off-shoots to explore for scenery. I did this loop and River Scene Trail together for a nice hike. This one has a pretty steep incline at "the stairs" if you aren't entering from the west end, so be prepared. The stairs are VERY narrow and can be difficult to pass others, especially with dogs. When I went a few months ago, some of the slats on the steps were missing and my dog fell through. They seemed to have been fixed the last time I went though, just be cautious.

I prefer the Lewis & Clark trails (near Defiance, MO) only because it is far less trafficked on weekends.

hiking
11 days ago

Gorgeous trail, would easily be one of my favorites if it weren't for the high amount of foot traffic. If you're considering visiting Castlewood, go early during the week. This place is PACKED on weekends! Very scenic, dog-friendly (but PLEASE pick up after your dog and keep it on-leash). Can be muddy in spots. Lots of little off-shoots to explore for scenery. I did this loop and Lone Wolf Trail together for a nice hike.

I prefer the Lewis & Clark trails (near Defiance, MO) only because it is far less trafficked on weekends.

Is this trail affected by the floods??

hiking
14 days ago

Really like this trail. Great overlooks and a great incline. The trail under the bluffs is pretty as well. Love it in the fall.

hiking
20 days ago

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

A pretty hike with varied terrain. Half the hike I passed a few people; the other half was heavily trafficked.

Perfect varied trail with beautiful views.

trail running
1 month ago

trail running
1 month ago

Nice trail for running, hiking, and biking. Plenty of options to increase your mileage or cut it short.

hiking
1 month ago