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With its narrow valley, rugged, mountainlike terrain and deep blue spring, Roaring River State Park is breathtaking. Roaring River is known for its premier trout fishing. Young and old alike will enjoy feeding and watching the fish in the spring pool or taking a tour of the trout hatchery. Other park features include a swimming pool, shaded picnic area and store. Explore the natural wonders of the park on one of seven trails totaling over 10 miles. Ozark Chinquapin Nature Center exhibits interpretive displays and park naturalists present programs on the park's natural history. Overnight guests have a variety of options. Campers will find 187 campsites ranging from basic to electric hookup. The elegant Emory Melton Inn and Conference Center features 26 guest rooms, a restaurant, gift shop and meeting rooms. Twenty-six secluded, rustic cabins with kitchens are perfect for families. Reservations for the inn and cabins are required. Whether coming to fish, hike or relax by the pool, Roaring River State Park has something for everyone that will whet their appetite to return again and again.

hiking
13 days ago

This review is for the River Trail, which isn't listed on this site for Roaring River SP.
Blazed in Yellow. We accessed it from near the parking lots by the Fish Hatchery. You'll pass the Amphitheater, or you can pick up part of the trail there, since the Amphitheater kind of interrupts the trail.
This was a short trail but interesting scenery and features. No real climbing, and for most of the trail, you are hugging the River (though not really close enough to get down to it). Narrow along much of the trail, have to go single-file. Some cool rock overhangs and natural "benches." I think kids would like this trail and could manage it well.

hiking
13 days ago

I found the trailhead by going behind the Nature Center and crossing the road. TH signage is on the other side of the road.
Hiked only a portion b/c it was end of the day and we were losing daylight. I would rate this as more than "Moderate" due to the quick and steep climbs and rugged trail condition. It does flatten out at the top, and you can catch your breath! Late afternoon sunlight through the trees was really pretty. We took the connector trail to meet up with Deer Leap Trail and head back down to leave. I'll definitely return to do the whole trail.

hiking
13 days ago

Too short to really get into a stride, but the view from the top is nice. You're on a wooden bridge and trail for part of it. Cool rocks to climb on. You can connect to Fire Tower Trail from this trail, which I did later in the day to shorten the Fire Tower Trail (running out of daylight).

hiking
15 days ago

Steep to begin. Looks like a WPA project. Well maintained. Pleasant with good markings.

This trail takes you up over the hatchery. There is an overlook above the spring but really you can’t see much of the spring. Overall I wasn’t too impressed by this trail. It was a good climb however.

Hiked this trail this morning. I would start by saying that it was a great trail. BUT it is not a good trail for very young kids. It is very steep. Pretty much you go straight up. It levels off a bit then you go straight down. The walk down was a bit slick and you have to be very careful. Saw a family walking in on our way out and I was genuinely worried about the young boy they had with them that was having a very hard time keeping his footing. This trail is an interpretive self guided trail so be sure to get a white pamphlet from the nature center so you will know what they are wanting you to see at each station. There are three small caves on this trail that they will let you go into. My favorite part was the last station where the Devils kitchen is. This trail definitely gives you a workout but was fun overall.

Hiked this trail this morning. We started at the Chinkapin Nature Center. After walking the trail I definitely think this is the best place to start. Be aware that the first part of the trail is pretty steep and you will get a good workout but it is well worth it. The fire tower is no longer above the tree line as it was put in in the 30’s but you are allowed to climb it and you still get the feeling of being very high. Keep on traveling around past the fire tower and you will encounter a good downhill climb. Then a beautiful view of a bluffline and then the glades. Near the end you get a short walk along the river before it comes out in the campground. With a short walk back to the nature center. As was said by earlier posts you do have to cross the highway a couple of times but personally I don’t think it took away much from the overall experience. It was a great trail with lots to see.

hiking
2 months ago

Trail was ok, but nothing too interesting. that being said, it was a lot better than just staying home and watching TV.

hiking
2 months ago

Lots of stairs up front, but a great view of some rock formations and bluffs!

This was a beautiful trail, easy to find off the Buffalo River parking lot. The whole trail is in the woods and shady and it circles and goes though beautiful rock formations you can climb on or between. There is some incline to give it some difficulty, but overall I’d love to return with my kids! Beware poison ivy and ticks.

7/28/18 trail still closed for maintenance to reroute 1 mile of the trail.

hiking
2 months ago

This is a great hike to take with kids! Lots to see and scramble on. This route has a connection that leads to the hatchery, deer leap trail, fire tower trail or river trail, so using the connections helps in finding the distance you want.

walking
3 months ago

Wife and I just walked this on vacation. I wouldn’t call it a hike as much as a walk. Big hilly sections though. My suggestion when you get to the loop... go right. The pools in the picture were more the creek outside the trail though not in the trail.

hiking
4 months ago

There is a lot to like about this trail...elevation, distance, scenery...But I was a little disappointed in the fire tower providing zero view and having to cross the highway twice. Enjoyed the finish along the river.

hiking
4 months ago

just a walk upstairs to other trails not a true hike. But a great outlook to see the hatchery from above if that is what you are interested in.

hiking
4 months ago

It was a fun trail but more of just a walk with stairs. I wouldn't classify it as a true trail to hike. Close to the hwy so I could hear traffic. Took away from my purpose for being out in nature.

hiking
4 months ago

It took us over an hour to find the trail head. It’s off the side of the highway basically in the middle of nowhere. To get there you have to walk along the highway which is incredibly hilly/curvy and cars, trucks and trailers are flying by going 40+. We didn’t even walk much of the trail because it was too hot and we didn’t have enough water for 2 people and 4 dogs. As usual in MO, the water is a crystal teal and beautiful but this park was SWAMPED. The wading area was full of screaming kids throwing rocks at one another and the fishing areas were packed. I had no idea this was a giant trout hatchery and so that was a little disappointing. I’m more of a let the dogs off leash and see 0 people on the trails kind of person. The drive for me was 3.5 hours and I would never come back. It was a beautiful park but not for activities I enjoy.

hiking
4 months ago

Nice hike, only took a little over two hours at a mild pace taking pictures along the way.

Don't access at Hatchery, steep climb, use another.

hiking
4 months ago

Great hike. I wished it got closer to the river sooner, but all in all a good trail. tIt took us about 2 hours at a moderate pace. Good incline for the first half mile or so, then it eases up.

As of 3-24-18 the trail is closed for maintenance

hiking
6 months ago

Short trail but nice overlook to the hatchery. This trail does split off to the Fire Tower Trail so did them both.

hiking
6 months ago

Longer trail with a steep climb early on making you earn it. What goes up must go down so after the tower you get the decline and after that it levels out. Little bit of everything on this trail.

hiking
6 months ago

Nice overall hike. Bit of a steep climb early on. The trail does run parallel to the road for a stretch so the sound of the cars took away from feeling out in nature. Other trails in the area making it easy to do several while you are out there. Be prepared to fight for parking with people fishing if you go on the weekends during season.

hiking
7 months ago

This trail has everything. A view of the spring with its clear turquoise water. Then a steep climb through woods to fire tower. Then great views of cliffs and benches. Then a bit along the river. It really is a trail that covers everyone

As of 12/18/17 trail is closed for maintenance.

hiking
7 months ago

Got. To trail head and looks like people have set up living quarters. Just didn't feel safe.

Beautiful area. Frequently patrolled and safe. Great family campground.

Nice trail for a fun, easy hike.

So much park, so little daylight! I will be back to adventure.

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