Explore the most popular views 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.

backpacking
5 days ago

Beware of ticks, they were falling from the trees on us at the campsite. The trail from creek to the campground is very overgrown but manageable. Enjoyed my time on Lower Rock Creek as always! This is an unofficial trail that is not maintained, be prepared for less than ideal conditions.

backpacking
5 days ago

We turned this into a three day hike because we wanted more time out there and it was worth it! at the 12 mile mark you can go off to the left and about .1 off trail is a great campsite with a decent little creek. it was nice and secluded great for a first night stay. when you get to Brazil creek fill up your water as there are not many options after that.

Beautiful. I have to say some of the reviews mentioning snakes kept me off of this trail for a while. Didn't see a single one! Perhaps the best thing about this is you can make it as long or as short as you wish. It's a nice walk to the stream itself, and for those who want a more rugged experience, there's plenty of that up and downstream. We had the entire place to ourselves on a summer Sunday! never saw another car after leaving Hwy. E.

hiking
14 days ago

I would consider this trail Easy, not Moderate. It's short and the elevation change is hardly anything. I went in late July and the trail was covered in spider webs. The rocks at the top would probably be cool for kids. We didn't see anybody on the trail or at the top either way.

hiking
14 days ago

Easy to follow trail with a nice view of the Ozarks at the top of the bluff. I've been at least 5 times and it's never crowded. If you go in early Autumn the view is even better. Beware of seed ticks though.

hiking
21 days ago

Trail was overgrown almost everywhere except near trail heads. Lots of downed trees and deep horse ruts along the way. Other than that it was a nice trek with lots of wildlife (numerous deer, squirrels, rabbits and turtles). Liberally used 25% Deet, but still came off the trail with somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 ticks on me and my clothing/gear.

so glad we found this trail was worth the walk

hiking
1 month ago

It’s a really beautiful area as many have stated. It may be different with very high or low water levels but when we were there there was pool after inviting pool as we hiked along the creek. Some of them were ~20 feet across.. Next time I’ll do some wading.

Knocked off one star because of how poorly marked and maintained the trail was. There are a couple pics of one of our group with her toes on a 6” ledge. I doubt that was the way the trail went but it sure appeared to lead us there.

I rate this as difficult, because of the challenging nature of climbing over and around the big rocks, which are incredibly slippy when wet.
You can camp at the trailhead by your car, or at the river some 40 mins in or further upstream, I found it difficult to get around rocks with my backpack, and because I was on my own, return and camped at a safer place. This is a beautiful site to camp, relax and hike. Totally recommend it.

backpacking
1 month ago

Every other review I’ve read is pretty accurate. My GF(inexperienced) and I hiked yesterday 4/28/18.
The trails are definitely not maintained, which is fine with me because it means not many people go here. It’s not the easiest trail to navigate; with occasional rock climbing, rock hoping and super slick rock along the river. Yes there are definitely an abundance of snakes but that’s just a part of nature, watch where you put your hands & feet and you should be fine. The trail can be difficult in places and easy in other spots but well worth the experience if the river and falls (lots of rain last week), the views and serenity of it all.
We will be back again to see more soon. I expect during the summer it would be incredibly overgrown, so come prepared to work for it.

Our first impression of the horse camp side was pretty dismissal. 2pm and there's an extremely intoxicated guy carrying a handle of vodka and yelling obscenities at someone else at another site, shortly after he passed out in a camp chair. The two young teens with him came over to us and invited us to party with them later - they looked like they might have been old enough to drive, maybe. They said they camp frequently there. That was enough to make us not interested in spending any time here.

off road driving
1 month ago

I need to talk to AllTrails about some serious updates here. First, there are multiple trails, about 80 miles of them, in this 12 to 13 square mile area. The primary use of the area is "off-road motorcycle riding" or "dirt biking" which isn't a category AllTrails uses, so I selected "Off Road Driving". I can eventually map all of the trails in AllTrails, but go to https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/mtnf/recarea/?recid=21762 for the official information on the area.

As for dirt biking, this is definitely a 5 star place to ride trails from easy as pie to hell and back. All skill levels can have fun here. There is a lot of level trails, rocks to bounce over, hills to climb, streams to splash through, and even bridges to cross. Visit Rattlesnake Cave, Deer Trough, and good luck finding what's left of Stump Springs, but it's there. There's also a 5 acre trials bike area with no limiting trails within it - ride wherever you like.

Hikers could conceivably use the area, but I've never seen any on the trails. If you hike this, you'll have to ford creeks (in the wet season), climb some pretty steep stuff, deal with lose gravel, and above all, get off the trail if you hear any riders coming your way! Some people ride fast without much time to react.

In my opinion, hike elsewhere and have run riding here!

backpacking
1 month ago

Very rugged terrain. There are several areas of the trail that have deep horse ruts. It would probably be impassable if it was muddy. Trails were somewhat marked. Lots of hills. Cross over several creeks, or the same creek several times. Camped alone a portion of Smith Creek. Saw a few other campsites along the way. Good for a one-nighter close to home. Will probably go back and explore the area again and spend another night. Decent stay.

hiking
2 months ago

Nice view at the highest point of the trail. The lower portion of the trail runs by the river.

hiking
2 months ago

Enjoyable trail for the family. Interesting rock outcropping and views of the river. The lower portion of the trail can be a bit muddy after a rain. Black and White Warbler, Pine Warbler, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Northern Parula, Blue-Gray Gnatcatcher and Louisiana Waterthrush were some of the birds found during our early spring hike. The highlight of the hike though were four Big Red False Morels found just off the trail next to some stumps.

Not your normal trail but some amazing scenery. I encourage you to venture off the “trail” and see what you can explore.

Nice little trail. Would be good for kids or people who think a mile is a long ways.

We did not realize upon making the drive to Ava that this is a scenic drive and not actually a hiking trail like we thought. Oops! It might be good for the Glade Top Run held every year or even biking, but we should've done some research first. It was a pretty drive.

Nice area but not an easy walk by any means due to horse ruts

hiking
2 months ago

Great views and a fun hike. Work has been done to clear the trail but follow the marker tape if you want to stay on the trail. Even then we strayed some.

hiking
2 months ago

Well marked trail. We saw about 10+ other people while we were out there, so it's moderately trafficked in my opinion. However, the spring was very pretty and worth it.

Multi-use trail that follows barely descernable old double track trail much of the way. Has a short distance that provides views overlooking Smith Creek. Otherwise very ordinary. Definately offers Solitude. Their was about 6 established backpacker camps existing.

I hiked this trail plus several more miles to hw 21. The trail was well maintained as well as the camp sights. You gain elevation quickly and enjoy a challenging hike with rewarding views. Not much water so bring plenty.

Nice primitive no fee campground. I suspect always full in the summer. It s a trail head for the nice 1/2 mile boy scout created trail, but also the larger Cedar Creek trailhead.

Nice place to ride, can get technical quick...

hiking
2 months ago

GPS tracked this exact loop around 28.25 miles.. nice hike.. not overly challenging.

backpacking
2 months ago

Great Trails. Well maintained. They had a controlled burn last week which left a good section on the west side of the of the loop scorched. We were able to find some water on the east side but did not see a big source until Brazil Creek.

on Prospector Trail

walking
2 months ago

Nice view from the bluff just past halfway down. This is an off-road vehicle trail.

2 months ago

Creek crossings up after rain. No way to get over without getting wet. Lots of multi floral rose to snag you along the way. Trail was well marked.

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