Best camping trails in Mark Twain National Forest, Missouri

1,172 Reviews
Explore the most popular camping trails in Mark Twain National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
Map of camping trails in Mark Twain National Forest, Missouri
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Top trails (38)
#1 - Ozark Trail: Taum Sauk Section
Mark Twain National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(136)
Length: 12.3 mi • Est. 5 h 50 m
It's hard to overstate how great this section is. You have 1.5 billion-year-old mountains, igneous glades, springs, grand vistas, odd rock formations, and a swimming hole complete with natural flumes. Please consult The Ozark Trail Association regarding the condition and availability for hiking on this section of The Ozark Trail. Between the reservoir breach and the major blow-down there have been some major changes in the last few years.Show more
#2 - Council Bluff Lake Trail
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(103)
Length: 11.4 mi • Est. 5 h 3 m
#3 - Berryman Trail
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(120)
Length: 27.1 mi • Est. Multi-day
The Berryman Loop is a multi-use trail that meanders through the scenic Ozark Hill Country at the site of Civilian Conservation Corps camp of 1937 with many rocky and rugged sections. This loop offers a rare two to four day backpack trip. There are several road crossings to make this into shorter loops and break into day hikes.Show more
#4 - Lower Rock Creek Trail
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(112)
Length: 5.5 mi • Est. 2 h 33 m
When you pass the gate, turn immediately to the left (south), cross the stream and follow the trail back to the creek, then travel right (west) the best you can on the north side of the creek. An unofficial trail comes and goes. The tumbling creek and high bluffs make this a wonderful area, and there are many nice areas to camp.Show more
#5 - Cedar Creek Trail System
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(81)
Length: 9.6 mi • Est. 4 h 36 m
Cedar Creek Trail meanders through the oak hickory forests and tall grass prairies of central Missouri. The Cedar Creek Trail system consists of four trails; a printable brochure can be downloaded through Mark Twain National Forest website. The Southern Loop marked in grey diamonds, crosses 22 miles of pastoral countryside. Two-thirds of the trail is cross-country; the rest is along gravel roads. Smith Creek Loop, about 5 miles in length between Boydsville and Rutherford Bridge, is marked in orange diamonds. This scenic route provides glimpses of Cedar Creek from the bluffs above. Pine Ridge Section, marked with grey diamonds, passes through Pine Ridge Recreation Area and is open to foot travel and mountain bikes only; no horses. A horse route is located to the west. Moon Loop, marked with Yellow diamonds, is about 7 miles in length. It is named for the moon-like appearance of the area caused by soil erosion in the 1930s. The area has since been restored. ***No horses on the Pine Ridge Section.***Show more
#6 - The Ozark Trail: Eleven Point Section
Mark Twain National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(32)
Length: 27.5 mi • Est. Multi-day
Great vistas and a visit to the cool Eleven Point make this a favorite section. Recent tread repair, sawing, signing, lopping, and leaf blowing leaves this section in good shape. The trail from Hurricane Creek west to Greer Recreation Area along the "lower route" has heavy stinging nettle grown in the summer, so be prepared. This can be a beautiful area to travel in the summer, but summer growth combined with heat, humidity and insects can detract from its beauty. There are some tread issues on the lower route near east of Greer Recreation Area plus some erosion issues near Bockman Spring. This trail can be a great adventure in the summer with swimming and fishing opportunities along the Eleven Point River, but it's not a "walk in the park." The trail leaves the 3152 trailhead, winding along the side slopes to Hurricane Creek. The crossing may be unsafe to use during high water periods. The first 10 miles pass through very rugged slopes and flowage associated with the Eleven Point National Scenic River. Several fine views of the Eleven Point valley are present. From the Greer Recreation area, at mile 10, the trail parallels the Eleven Point River on its way to McCormack Lake. There is a fine picture opportunity at the mouth of Greer Spring and an excellent bluff view of the river near mile 12. A spur leads to McCormack Lake at mile 13. Continuing west, the trail winds through the rugged Eleven Point terrain and offers two more contacts with the river. Near mile 20, the trail passes next to Bockman Spring, which is part of the Spring Creek flowage. All spring water should be treated before use. The westernmost 10 miles of the trail are in the Spring Creek flowage and offer occasional views of the creek and bottom fields. Show more
#7 - Hercules Glades West Trailhead to Upper Pilot Knob
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(32)
Length: 7.6 mi • Est. 3 h 42 m
Multiple loops available. From this side the shortest planned out and back is 8 miles round trip. Combining loops could keep you on the trail for 2-3 days. Nice scenery and not overused. Part of the Mark Twain National Forest, groups of ten or less. Loop, p-p and combination trails available.Show more
#8 - Ozark Trail: Middle Fork Section
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(25)
Length: 22.7 mi • Est. 10 h 56 m
Plentiful water with rock-bottomed creeks, small waterfalls, and a mix of hardwoods and pines. Fast becoming a favorite destination! Contoured trail that winds up and down the ridges and hollows of the headwaters of the Black Fork of the Middle River. Pines, oaks, hickory, sassafras, dogwood, and paw-paws surrounding spring-fed rock-bottomed brooks, a small waterfall, and a wetland that is home to the endangered Hines Emerald Dragonfly, along with spring wildflowers and the occasional deer, turkey, and hawk. Plus much more. While this section of trail has no commanding vistas, it's a great trip with plenty of small wonders, as you wind through the remote forests of the Eastern Ozarks.Show more
#9 - Kaintuck Hollow Acorn Section Trail
Mark Twain National Forest
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(42)
Length: 8.3 mi • Est. 3 h 44 m
#10 - John J. Audubon Loop Trail
Mark Twain National Forest
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(17)
Length: 11.5 mi • Est. 5 h 49 m
Showing results 1 - 10 of 38