Lower Rock Creek Trail

MODERATE 46 reviews

Lower Rock Creek Trail is a 6.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Fredericktown, Missouri that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
692 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

over grown

rocky

scramble

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. Many nice areas to camp.

hiking
15 days ago

Giving two stars due to the abundance of TICKS! The first mike of this trail is narrow and through scrub timber - spider webs and thick tick territory. The creek bed is cool - neat rocks, sometimes you have to take the bank - no clear trail through these sections - and back into brush and weeds. We got 2 miles in and turned back because we realized our legs were covered with tiny ticks. Would not do this one again - if only because it’s not worth the feeling of bugs and spider webs all over you.

hiking
1 month ago

Good trail, didn't see snakes, got a couple ticks. a little bit of experience hiking, makes this trail real fun. couple places to camp, no idea if you're allowed to or not though. this is a low maintained trail and that includes the road up to the trailhead. small cars can make it but its rough. i plan on hiking it again and probably camping off the trail.

backpacking
3 months 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.

hiking
3 months ago

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
4 months 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.

camping
4 months ago

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
4 months 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.

hiking
6 months ago

Very beautiful hike once you get down to the creek. The trail comes and goes so we ended up just climbing on the rocks along the creek.

hiking
7 months ago

This area is quite possibly the most beautiful stretch of Missouri I have experienced. As Cory said pleas take care of this place. Pack in/pack out, practice safe fire use and watch out for snakes in the warmer months.

7 months ago

my favorite spot in the state. very remote and serene. not for anyone afraid of venomous snakes or four people looking for an easy path. please take care of it. pack in/pack out

7 months ago

This canyon and surrounding bluffs are one of the most desolate and beautiful spots in Missouri. Watch out for Cottonmouths!

hiking
9 months ago

had a great time here today. nice stone arrow pointing the way at the fork and some cairns to help you back to the trail.

10 months ago

KEEP LEFT!!! We missed that about 150 yards in. Thought by the downed trees that we should take the path to the right. Major climb, up and down Trackler Mountian.
Stayed overnight at a middle camp site. The kitchen equipment is worse for the wear, but the trip was great.

Friday, June 16, 2017

It is a more wilderness feeling trail. I like that. If you are not an avid outdoorsy type, be careful not to get lost. The trail is not always well marked and can be very weedy. Snakes don't bother me, but we did see some, including Copperheads. Enjoy.

hiking
Saturday, June 03, 2017

Great hike with amazing scenary. The trail is a little rough but not to bad. I saw 2 cotton mouths by the creek but I left them alone and they left me alone. I did not get any ticks either.

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Just went this past weekend and it was incredible! We only saw two other people the entire time we were there so it really had the feel of being out in the wild on your own. The creek was beautiful and very full from the recent rain, everything was so green and lush, moss and lichens everywhere!! Even saw some cool liverworts! An untouched paradise.

Just watch out for snakes and slick rocks because we all came away with bruised knees from falling a few times.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

I went last year and it was gorgeous, but so many ticks!!!!!!!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Some very beautiful wilderness. Some of the best I've seen in the Midwest. Feels very remote. The river looks like a river you'd see in the Rockies. The trail along the river is pretty rugged in some spots. You have to do some rock hopping and will get some wet boots in a few spots but that's part of the fun. My 8 year old son and I hiked about 3/4 mile upstream. We saw 3 Water Moccasins about 10 minutes apart. One in the water and 2 on the edge of the trail so we decided to turn around and hike back to where the trail first meets the river(didn't see any snakes in that area, and I have a low tolerance level for poisonous snakes! ) We hung out on a large flat rock area, ate lunch, waded in the water, and enjoyed the scenery.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

favorite place in missouri

hiking
Friday, March 10, 2017

Awesome spot with tons of off trail exploring. Definitely some challenging terrain in the area but nothing too difficult. I will certainly be returning this summer

backpacking
Monday, March 06, 2017

One of the best trails in the state, no doubt about it. Very rugged and remote. Camped at the second camp site (the furthest one upstream) and it was a perfect location. Amazing rhyolite formations! Can't wait to go back and climb up the sides of the hills to get a good look at the ravine.

Be sure to wear sturdy shoes. The trail frequently crosses boulder piles/talus slopes and you may need to cross the creek occasionally.

hiking
Monday, February 27, 2017

This is such a great hike! Some of the most untouched land around! Whoever rates this less than a 5 is crazy. Maybe they're trying to keep it to their self!? Trees down and lightly trafficked trail is what makes it fun! The trail is obvious enough through the woods to the creek so don't worry about that.

You can bushwhack down stream to where it meets the river or go upstream to Cathedral Canyon (recommended).

Tips: Go here on a warm winter day to avoid snakes and wear waterproof shoes!

hiking
Sunday, February 26, 2017

Rough Road, Trail is hard to find and hard to maintain trail. What an amazing area if you can get there.

Friday, January 27, 2017

beautiful area, though not a maintained trail it was packed down well enough to easily see the way. went after a rain and there were many waterfalls

hiking
Sunday, April 10, 2016

Go if you want a rugged yet rewarding experience. A few things you should note if you want to hike here:

1. There is rugged "Jeep trail" to the "trail head." If you have a small car you may want to park out on 511 and walk in.
2. There is no official trail maintained by any park service. The path to the creek isn't obvious.
3. Once you get to the creek, there is no trail. There are a few beaten paths in some areas, but you will be choosing your own path most of the time. If you follow a beaten path going out, there is no guarantee you will find it coming back. You will be taking frequent tree twigs to the face.
4. The pink rock is extremely slippery when wet. Losing your footing can result in a fall onto other jagged rocks or a slide down into the creek.
5. There are lots of dangerous snakes in the area.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

there are two trails. when you start the hike, go left. that's the real trail. it will take you to the st Francis river. very beautiful. only a few miles total. of you go right at the beginning of the trailhead, it'll take you straight up the hill. very steep. while it was a fun trail and ended up doing about 5 miles on that portion, the trail completely disappears in any direction.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Fun

hiking
Saturday, February 07, 2015

Did not like this hike at all. Downed trees at every turn and constantly having to work around that and the trail was flooded at one point. Also difficult to follow the trail. No markings. Also no trail head markings or place to park.

hiking
Monday, December 15, 2014

Beautiful area. Stream & rock formations - with small waterfalls throughout. Explored both up stream & downstream. Gorgeous hike & canyon. And in the winter - no snakes - yea!

hiking
Saturday, November 29, 2014

Wonderful scenic area with tumbling creek, waterfalls, tall cliffs, great backpacking and camping area. Won't disappoint.

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