Swan Creek Wilderness Area Trail

MODERATE 13 reviews
#11 of 54 trails in

Swan Creek Wilderness Area Trail is a 8.8 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Garrison, 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
8.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
905 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

camping

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

cave

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

bugs

muddy

old growth

over grown

rocky

snow

washed out

Swan Creek is an 8,488 acre area that provides for year-round nonmotorized dispersed recreation use as it is a designated Semi-Primitive Nonmotorized (SPNM) Area. There are approximately 20 miles of moderately used riding, hiking, and mountain bike trails available. Swan Creek itself offers swimming, fishing, and a non-potable water supply

2 months ago

Our first impression of the horse camp side was pretty dismissal. 2pm and there's an extremely intoxicated guy carrying a handle of vodka and yelling obscenities at someone else at another site, shortly after he passed out in a camp chair. The two young teens with him came over to us and invited us to party with them later - they looked like they might have been old enough to drive, maybe. They said they camp frequently there. That was enough to make us not interested in spending any time here.

hiking
6 months ago

Good trail. There are a lot of other trails (appx. 20 miles) in Swan Creek Wilderness.

hiking
6 months ago

There are several more trails in this area than shown here in the Swan Creek Wilderness Area - approx. 20 miles.
LInk to map of all trails here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd516654.pdf
I followed trail #6107 which I believe is the trail shown here from the east trailhead off UU Hwy to the creek and back which took me approx. 4 hrs. I didn't have any issues finding my way and found plenty of trail markers along the way.
As others have noted, a lot of trash in the parking area. I was bored on my hike back and decided to make a game of counting the pieces of trash (mostly beer cans) seen from the trail - 134 :)
Of course this doesn't include all that is laying in the parking lot. I don't know how anyone can get lost on these trails as long as you follow the beer cans :)
There is a larger parking area on the west end off Hwy 125 at the Bar K Wrangler Camp but you may have to tread some water to cross the creek to get access to the trails depending on water levels.

backpacking
6 months ago

There was some trash at the trail head. Mostly beer cans and probley from kids using this as a party spot, but it cleared up down the trail. Great place for hiking with some up hills, down hills, and several flat areas. I thought the trail was worn well enough and didn't have too much trouble seeing the trail. There a couple of times I kind of lost the trail, but it's fairly obvious where the trail is at. Very few trail markers along the way, but I got to Swan Creek with no problem. The trail is a doosey (fairly steep) on the way back so be ready. Overall it was really pretty and really remote. I would recommend this trail, but give yourself about 5 hours to get to the creek and back.

horseback riding
Sunday, June 18, 2017

I take issue with the man who stated horseriders left trash and cans ... more likely towners that deface our trails and camps...

horseback riding
Monday, February 20, 2017

Great place to ride a horse

Saturday, May 14, 2016

The directions on the app lead you to what I can only assume is some kind of service road. The actual trailhead is off of Hwy 125. Even once you get there, however, the trail markings are basically non-existent. There was one sign at the trailhead, I followed the trail in about a hundred feet to the creek & that was it. I will say the 2 hours driving I wasted were very scenic & this looks like a really pretty area if you want to bushwhack it.

paddle sports
Friday, September 26, 2014

I float swan creek after locally heavy rains from Garson to shadow rock park. This creek produces large standing waves that keep getting bigger as the creek rises instead of washing out. Bring your life jacket ! It's a great ride.

horseback riding
9 months ago

horseback riding
Sunday, March 19, 2017

hiking
Sunday, March 30, 2014