Lost Valley Trail Loop

MODERATE 166 reviews

Lost Valley Trail Loop is a 10.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Defiance, Missouri that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 10.2 miles Elevation Gain: 636 feet Route Type: Loop

dog friendly

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

forest

partially paved

river

views

wildlife

bugs

muddy

rocky

scramble

A combination of woodsy trails, old roads and a few streams to cross.

hiking
rocky
3 days ago

hiking
bugs
over grown
1 month ago

too many bugs right now

hiking
1 month ago

this trail was perfect for a quick hike. My wife and I ran 10k on a hot and wet Saturday. The bugs and flooding was very minimal and we only noticed 1 tick, however we covered ourselves in DEET. All in all, we were very impressed and plan on making this trail a Saturday regular for Spartan training. Aroo!!!

mountain biking
3 months ago

Before you bike this trail I would recommend a couple things. 1. bug spray, I have never in my life seen an area so congested with mosquitoes as this was. I could not take a break, if I tried I was surrounded by literally dozens of them. 2. everything you need to change a tire in case of a flat, it is very rocky, and if you were to get a flat when in the thick of the trail it would be an extremely long and tough hike back pushing your bike. When beginning on the trail DO NOT GO LEFT it will be a never ending uphill battle through rocky hills. If you take the first right you hit a very nice wooded section with a pretty fun trail but it doesn't last long then you're stuck on a really boring gravel road for 3 or so miles(with a huge hill you will have to push your bike up) before you get to the actuall trail. You can take the trail going straight up the middle Skipping the entire right side, you miss that nice mile or so of wooded trail but it saves you from a large chunk of boring gravel road. Taking the long way around the right side, the total trail showed a little over 11 miles on my phone. All in all whether you take the short or long way to the top once you get past the gravel road and get into the actual trail it's fun to ride. It is a challenge forsure though, its not a laid back trail, at times I thought it would never end, it's very long but I definitely enjoyed it.

hiking
5 months ago

I clocked 12.6 miles from my car right at the trailhead and back. Didn’t get off track either. I don’t know if I’d say this Trail is amazing, but maybe it’s better with more greenery. Saw maybe 8 bicyclists and 1 other hiker. The trail was nice and all but didn’t have any real scenery and I imagine the scenery we did have will be covered once the leaves grow in. The airport nearby had many planes coming and going, and very audibly. The police shooting ranges that back up against the park sounded like we were in a war zone. That paired with the smoke from an apparent nearby prescribed burn just added to the special effects.

5 months ago

Best trail in the area as far as distance, terrain and scenery. I just ran it today after a lot of rain and when every other trail was too muddy to run, Lost Valley was perfect!

7 months ago

Amazing trail to go on.

hiking
8 months ago

I just hiked this trail in the last week of November and it was very pleasant. It was midweek and I still came across several hikers and about 10 mountain bikers during the day. This is the third time this year that I have hiked the entire Lost Valley Trail. I feel that hiking it clockwise is the easiest as most of the two-track road sections are then downhill and mostly on the 2nd half of the hike. Also, the Carbonite mileage markers are all laid out for viewing in this direction. There are markers every half mile and the trail is easy to follow even while covered with leaves. When starting out, I also prefer to follow the Little Femme Osage Creek which is the "old way" of hiking this loop. When you reach the first Carbonite sign with 2 arrows pointing right for "Lost Valley Trail" and "Short Loop," you instead bear off on the unmarked road to your left. This keeps you along the creek and you'll meet back up with the marked trail around the 1.5 (?) mile marker. This is also the route shown in the book, "St. Louis: 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles."

hiking
9 months ago

beautiful fall variations of color during this time of year.

hiking
10 months ago

great as always! lotta vegetation creeping up on the paths + fallen trees. also be on guard for bikers hauling butt thru some very thin trails at some points. No ticks at this time but plenty of pesky gnats + flies.

hiking
11 months ago

Love this trail! Well marked, but I did get confused and ended up on the Hamburg Trail over half way through. I retraced my steps and took a right to follow the electrical lines and BAM! I was back on the trail. Over all, lots of bikers and switchbacks, but that kept me on my toes and interested. The perfect hike for my pup and I! Beautiful scenery, streams, and weather. Bring plenty of food and water for the both of you; you’ll be out there for awhile :)

mountain biking
11 months ago

Great trail. Where is the turn to get back to parking lot if you want to stay off hamburg trail?

hiking
Saturday, August 11, 2018

The distance is best thing about this trail. Not much elevation change and a lot of abandoned roads. Watch out for bikers.

trail running
Thursday, August 02, 2018

Great running trail. Light traffic consisted of a couple hikers and a couple bikers. If you haven't been before be sure to leave yourself plenty of daylight or bring lights. My run turned out to be just over 15 miles due to a few wrong turns... oops. I'll be going back again for sure.

mountain biking
Wednesday, July 18, 2018

love this trail.

hiking
Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Very boring besides a couple waterways, you should really just bike it instead of hiking it. Lots of bugs. Better off going somewhere else.

Monday, June 04, 2018

As mentioned in other reviews, this trail is shared heavily with mountain bikers. Always have to be listening. Especially when on the steep single lane trail. Bikers do come flying down those often. Other than the bikers, this trail is beautiful and offers changes of scenery.

trail running
Monday, May 28, 2018

This was a fun trail for running. Yes, there were a lot of bikes, but it wasn’t too bad. Plenty of technical stuff with some gravel and dirt mixed in. Great times!

hiking
Monday, May 07, 2018

Not my first choice for hiking. Most of the traffic on this single lane trail is mountain bikes so you are constantly stepping off of the trail to let bikes zoom by you without warning. Trail has a section of a 1000 switchbacks that will annoy a hiker because there isn't much elevation change. Great fun when you are on a bike but when you are on foot not so much.

hiking
Wednesday, May 02, 2018

This trail is probably five stars for mountain biking, and I give it three stars for hiking. The trail is overall smooth and rolling, I've hiked it once and was constantly stepping aside for mountain bikers. I would say if you want to hike in this area, definitely do the Lewis & Clark trail just to the east of this location. I also found this trail got fairly boring without much in the way of scenery.

Tuesday, May 01, 2018

fair trail, some nice water features

hiking
Tuesday, April 17, 2018

good trail, enjoyed very much but I walked the legs off my lab and wife and I am old (lol). it is not a dog-friendly trail, the dog must be on a leash.give it a try.

hiking
Monday, December 18, 2017

nice long moderate trail with variegated terrain, flora + fauna. very peaceful + modestly trafficked with a few hikers + bikers at this time of year.

hiking
Thursday, November 30, 2017

The description is definitely wrong - this trail is no where near Cottleville, but is between the Weldon Spring Conservation Area and Defiance. This trail has a mix of hills, valleys, woodlands, fields, creeks, and the remnants of the lost town of Hamburg. Really beautiful in fall and winter.

mountain biking
Friday, October 20, 2017

This is mountain biking. Great trail. Great variety.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Nice hike, but GPS doesn't work and didn't record most of my trip.

mountain biking
Thursday, September 07, 2017

had a great time riding the short loop, trail isn't located by Cottelville Missouri though might want to update that.

hiking
Saturday, August 05, 2017

Many mountain bikes, just be prepared

Friday, July 14, 2017

The trail itself was okay. We didn't get to walk very far, one: because it was hot as hell and two: it's not dog friendly at all! After reading all the reviews and descriptions of the trail, my partner and I brought our beagle along with us. The trail is literally all gravel and medium size rocks, not exactly the best terrain for dogs to walk on. We had to turn around and walk back to the car because our dog was hurting and not able to walk very well on the trail. We ended up having to carry him the rest of the way back to the car. So if you're thinking about taking your dog, you might think twice. Other than that, the trail was shaded, had some hills, creeks, and even some wildlife. It was quiet and very peaceful considering we were the only ones there.

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