Spring Trail

MODERATE 71 reviews
#4 of 14 trails in

Spring Trail is a 1.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Camdenton, Missouri that features a lake 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
1.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
200 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

camping

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

bird watching

forest

lake

partially paved

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

The first .40 mile of Spring Trail is paved and accessible to visitors with physical limitations. This section takes hikers along the shoreline of Lake of the Ozarks and Ha Ha Tonka Spring. This is a great trail to hike for spring wildflowers. Pawpaw trees can be seen along the first section of trail and grow alongside the wooden boardwalk just before the spring. One of the first stopping points is at the site of the old gristmill, which was burned in 1931 to make room for Lake of the Ozarks. A spillway, raceway and grinding stone remain at the mill site. A small trail shelter with tables and an interpretive display are also located near the old mill site. Spring Trail continues toward Ha Ha Tonka Spring along the shore of the old millpond. The millpond is a great place to watch for wildlife, including turtles, frogs and toads, green herons and others. At the end of the millpond is another raceway that acts as a dam to the spring water during normal water levels. During periods of high water levels, Ha Ha Tonka Spring water runs over the raceway and flushes out the millpond into the lake. Shortly after the second raceway, the trail surface changes from pavement to wooden boardwalk. At this point, a small wooden overlook over the spring offers a nice view of the spring channel and is a great place to look for muskrats, otters, ducks and other aquatic wildlife. An interpretive panel on this overlook has information about the springs recharge area, temperature and aquatic plant life. The wooden boardwalk has several short sections of steps leading back to the site where the spring water surfaces and four more interpretive panels are attached to the railing. As hikers near the spring, they are challenged to squeeze between large rocks that were once part of the ceiling over this collapsed chasm. After exiting the rocks, there is an old pump south of the trail. This pump was used in the 1940s to pump spring water to a small log cabin at the top of the hill above you. The spring emerges from the water-filled cave at the base of the small bluff ahead. The average flow of the spring is 58 million gallons of water a day. It is a half-mile from the trailhead to the mouth of the spring. Many visitors turn back at this point. The next section of the Spring Trail ascends 316 wooden steps climbing 200 vertical feet and can be very strenuous for some hikers. At the top of the steps, hikers can choose to follow Dell Rim Trail to the left to go to the castle ruins, or turn right to continue on the upper section of Spring Trail. Very shortly, hikers will have a spectacular view over the spring waters and spy the 250 foot bluff with castle ruins atop. Continuing on the trail, catch a glimpse of the century old post office building along Highway D. Shortly after this, hikers can choose to take a White Connector back to the mill site to end the hike early or continue on another loop of Spring Trail by taking the trail to the left. This stretch parallels Highway D and eventually crosses a dolomite glade and then heads back into woodlands. This trail will wind back to the trailhead at the lake parking lot.

hiking
15 hours ago

Narrow stairs but beautiful views.

walking
15 days ago

Whew stairs. They arent kidding with over 300...worth it at the bottom to see turquoise water. We didnt walk whole loop just saw a bit of spring then returned up the stairs. A lot of picture opportunities.

hiking
1 month ago

Good trail. A little too much pavement and man made sections of the trail for my taste but I would still recommend it. The spring is pretty amazing and there are sections that give history and information about the spring which is nice.

hiking
3 months ago

I combined this trail with the castle/island/boat/quarry trails to make it a little more substantial... ended up around 5.5 miles. Lots of variety of scenery - springs, streams, rock walls, quarry ledges, and the castle. Nice little jaunt.

3 months ago

Be sure to go down the steps and up the hill unless you want a challenge

6 months ago

great

hiking
7 months ago

Trail passes through the woods and a glade before descending to a paved path that leads to the spring. After the spring there is a set of 216 stairs that will give you a heck of a workout. The trail then loops back to where it started.

hiking
7 months ago

Beautiful, relatively short hike with one steep ascent. Some slippery rocks, but mostly easy stairs in good condition. Great scenery. One gets to see the beautiful turquoise water of the spring up close and later from above as the trail ascends.
Take it easy or climb the part of the trail with stairs a few times for extra exercise :)

8 months ago

this trail offers a beautiful scenic atmosphere while challenging your endurance a little bit. my 2 and 7 year old loved it

8 months ago

easy family walk

8 months ago

The spring is beautiful! Worth the hike down and then back up again!

hiking
9 months ago

Beautiful trail! Definitely a work out if you choose to do the stairs!! Great history behind this area.

9 months ago

great hike stairs killed me

hiking
9 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

Cool place to hike. Easy trail

walking
11 months ago

Love this place, the stairs might suck but it’s fun at the same time! Will be back again!

hiking
Sunday, January 28, 2018

I connected to this trail from the Colosseum Trail and did not do the full wooden staircase trail on this trip. I always marvel at the beautiful, clear water and the turquoise blue of the spring at its origin.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

The spring is stunning!!!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

You can see the castle on the cliff from this trail. The spring water is really blue and clear. There's a cave that's difficult to get to, off the trail, but well worth it if you can make the very steep climb up and down.

hiking
Sunday, August 27, 2017

Very nice hike. Lots to see. Highly recommended.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Good easy trail for kids and adults

walking
Sunday, July 02, 2017

Great trail. Even on the holiday weekend there was plenty of parking and the trail was not overly busy. Found you add distance diverting to castle trail etc. Still plenty to see and enjoy.

hiking
Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Very easy boardwalk trail next to the springs. Very pretty area. Lots to see along this in and out trail.

hiking
Saturday, May 27, 2017

We started at the Spring trail trailhead, walked the steps up to the Dell Rim trail, continued to the Castle, came back to the Spring trail connector then added on the Island trail. There was hardly a section that was not spectacular!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

awesome views. great wildlife

hiking
Thursday, December 29, 2016

This trail is beautiful and perfect for the person not wanting to get their shoes dirty. It is also handicap friendly.

hiking
Friday, December 02, 2016

very nice trail, but it can be crowded at times

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Super clear water and good wildlife with some pretty steep steps on your way down to the spring

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Pretty trail, crowded though

hiking
Monday, October 10, 2016

We combined the spring and colosseum trails. The trail was well maintained but some of the wood steps need work. The area is beautiful and has a lot to see. I suggest the parking lot accord from the postoffice (Start high finish high). There are parking lots at colosseum and the island. Lots of stairs and great scenery.

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