Explore the most popular hiking trails in Taum Sauk Mountain State Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Cool but kinda underwhelming. It is a nice place to relax after finishing the Mina Sawk Falls trail.

One of my favorite hikes so far! My husband and I hiked this today and enjoyed the cooler temperatures and for gorgeous fall foliage colors. The waterfall was fairly dry but still beautiful. Next time I would like to hike the additional 2 miles down and back to see the Devils Toll Gate.

We hiked late October, cool temperatures, beautiful skies and foliage. The natural granite formations, moss and lichen were amazing. To us, the hike was difficult; we found 80% of trail had rocks 4-12”; which made for difficult down hill hiking. The “mina” is a gradual down hill, for first half, then up hill hike for second half. We hiked with special needs son, and two dogs, in just under two hours. See photos.

I just finished a 24 mile hike from Goggins Mountain in Johnson Shut In’s to Tom Sauk Mountain State Park. We went from the Goggins TH to the Johnson Shut In’s Loop which intersects the Ozark Trail. We ended up crossing the river barefoot to avoid having to backpack all the way back to the highway. It was cold but manageable.
This trail was seriously the most demanding trail I’ve ever hiked. It definitely took all I had and then some. I wouldn’t recommend this for beginners. The views and experiences were well worth the work though! We experienced multiple types of terrains and forests. Every half mile or so was something different and on our toes. The trail was mostly clear with a few downed trees easy to navigate around. Once you start coming down off Ketcherside Mountain, pay attention to trail markers. More so when you get into Johnson Shut In’s State Park. We went down some false trail that ended up crossing back with the OT, luckily.
All in all a great time!

hiking
1 month ago

Varied terrain, good shoes are advised. My son and I managed to complete the loop in just over an hour which is moving at a pretty good clip. The falls were mostly a trickle but still very pleased with the views along the trail.

Cool trail. Falls were dry, but the scenery was great. Must have seen 50 tiny lizards scurrying about!

This trail is incredible! Beautiful terrain and scenery all the way to Taum Sauk Mountain. Definitely a challenge; make sure to bring plenty of water and snacks because you'll be out there for awhile!

Went with my girlfriend for our anniversary, wonderful sights and great trail for beginners like us, will definitely be back!

backpacking
3 months 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
3 months 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.

From the parking lot, a 1/2 mile total out and back walk on a wide paved sidewalk. The concrete walk will turn sharply left and lead to a bench with a plaque in front of a large rock surrounded by trees that marks the highest point in the state at 1772.68 msl.

Meh! Not so great. It was a fun bragging point but that’s it. The walk is very easy and short. There are no views associated with the highest point. We actually passed it up the first time around. If you are looking for views then walk to this point and keep going down the Mina Falls trail! Beautiful hike but a little rugged so be prepared for rock hiking past the paved walk.

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.

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

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.

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

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!

Fun hike in the hot weather. But tougher than I remember. But still a good one

just got back! love this hike although it was a lot different with little water running.

Easily the prettiest trail I’ve hiked since I’ve been in MO. The falls are very relaxing but probably much more impressive and photogenic when it isn’t so dry. I spent most of my time climbing around the rocks to look in all the little pools. The trail can be a little difficult to navigate, so I can see why people sometimes need to be rescued. Just keep an eye out for the blazes- the trail is sometimes swallowed up by the rocks. I also went to Devil’s Tollgate from here and was able to run a good portion of that part of the trail in my trail runners that I should have swapped out for my actual hiking boots. Wear stuff with good ankle support!

hiking
5 months ago

We have done this trail twice now and it doesn’t disappoint. The first time it was raining and the falls were amazing. This time not as much water but we were able to splash around and cool off. Overall well worth the hike!

This trail is amazing! my husband and I hiked it May 24th, 2018 in the morning. We saw and heard lots of birds and butterflies we're abundant and we're loving the wildflowers in the glades. The views are breathtaking and visibility was great, and I'll definitely be back in autumn to see the leaves.

We also saw lots of Collared Lizards, including a male in his bright breeding colors. Mina Sauk falls were beautiful!

As for the terrain, I didn't have any problems. As long as proper shoes are worn and care is taken in the more rocky areas, it's a very doable hike.

hiking
5 months ago

Mina Sauk was a good challenging hike for me. I will advise that you should have on some decent shoes for walking on a rugged terrain; this trail had a lot of rocks on it to hop over. You will see a mini alternate path to bypass the rocks in some spots. There's also a lot of mud and some puddles after it rains, too. For those who may question taking a walking stick on this trail, I would advise doing it, even if you're just entertaining the thought. I didn't need one, but this is a trail where you may want to err on the side of caution and just do it.

The first part of the trail didn't appear to be marked very well, especially when you kind of got used to the rocks being your path. Download an offline map from Alltrails (yes, you'll have to pay for a subscription, but it's worth it to me). the only time the offline map didn't work is when it started pouring down rain on me halfway through my hike, lol (I was more worried about my phone getting too wet at that point, lol). At that point, the Ozark Trail shared the path with the Mina Sauk Trail, and you could follow those markers, in addition to the Mina Sauk markers, all the way to the parking lot. You also have access to the Highest Point form the trail as well.

As for the Mina Sauk Falls, you do have to shimmy your way down the hill to see it better; make like you're taking the Ozark Trail to get there. It was nice to lay back on a rock, look up, and listen to all the sounds.

There weren't many people there that day, and it was a Saturday. For me, that made for a more peaceful hike.

Overall, it was a moderate level hike, but more on the "hard" side of moderate, in my opinion. It just had to do with the terrain and the incline going back up. I still thought the views were worth the adventure! I'd go back!

hiking
6 months ago

The waterfall is pretty small right now but we enjoyed the hike and the crystal clear and cool stream.

Beautiful views all around and the waterfall was in full force! Very worth it but there is no exaggeration about the amount of rocks on this trail. In many places your only option is to hop from rock to rock or to walk through dry river beds with large rocks jutting out every few inches. Definitely a high risk for a sprained or broken ankle but it was worth it. We brought our dog and we were really luck we had bought a first aid kit that day because he sliced his foot open. We would definitely bring him back because he enjoyed every minute of it but definitely not a hike for nervous or older dogs.

The mileage for the route shown here is much less than 1.9 miles. Maybe a 5 minute flat walk each way to a forested summit. Gotta do something a bit longer for some views.

trail running
6 months ago

Hiked this yesterday with my 10 and 8 year old sons. . Technical, rocky trail with some great views.

hiking
6 months ago

My husband and I did this trail this week during the rain. Definitely worth a trek in wet weather to see the falls flowing at their finest. As someone with short legs and with all the rain was glad to have brought my poles! I do think the blazes on the beginning of the trail could be improved.

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