Pickle Springs Natural Area is a 1.9 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Farmington, 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
1.9 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
311 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Pickle Springs Natural Area: Trail through time was designated a National Natural Landmark in 1974. It features unique rock outcroppings, wet weather creekcrossings, seasonal waterfalls, bluff overlooks and shallow caves. If you like unique and unusual rock formations, this trail provides just that, in addition to ample wildlife spotting opportunities. The trail is well maintained, there are some steep uphill climbs, and several bridged creek crossings.

hiking
14 days ago

beautiful walk with interesting rock formations and nice views

hiking
15 days ago

beautiful hike with the colors changing!

hiking
17 days ago

This was our very first time hiking and the trail was great even with a baby carrier, but not too easy either. Amazing views and rock formations!

19 days ago

The 2 miles were jam packed with beauty. My favorite part were the rocks and moss.

hiking
19 days ago

Short trail, but filled with incredible views. Been twices, both times with my husky and she had a blast. Highly recommend for anyone.

24 days ago

It was great and super well marked! We enjoyed it and will be back.

hiking
25 days ago

Based on prior reviews, I was expecting a challenge with a poorly marked trail, but I found just the opposite - perhaps it was recently remarked? Start the loop going to the left. Watch for small brown “TRAIL” signs and square white blazes on trees and rocks. A great hike on a fall day.

1 month ago

The first time I went in March it was mesmerizing. The rock formations are outstanding. Great views, plenty of climbing around if you want to. Going back end of oct to see COLOR!

hiking
1 month ago

Really enjoyed hiking this trail. Great terrain...very cool geological formations and at least one nice overlook. Only spring water running in the creek when I was there... small flow.. I think the waterfall would be great after a good rain.

hiking
1 month ago

A fantastic trail with great scenery. This was our first hike here but we will definitely be back.

hiking
1 month ago

Very glad we decided to make the trip from STL to walk the trail. However, it is not marked well at all. We did not notice it was a "one way" trail and went backwards. We ended up off the original trail on well worn paths that ended in dead ends or completely in the wrong direction. Ended up spending almost an hour just to find the trail. It was a nice hike with some great views. I would hike it again, but the correct way next time.

hiking
2 months ago

Only giving it 4 stars because it wasn't well marked. There are several WORN paths were trail blazes would help keep you on track. Other than that the trail was VERY enjoyable. Although it's short, it's definitely worth the trip - just bring a map or GPS.

hiking
3 months ago

Went here on a whim and DID NOT REGRET IT. Drove the quick hour drive from St. Louis and got right to it. NO BATHROOM AVAILABLE AT TRAIL HEAD.

My friend and I absolutely loved climbing on everything! Every corner was a new view and adventure. I cannot wait to go back!!

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful trail! My dog loved playing in all the water and there are some amazing views when you get to the top of the rocks! However the trail is very poorly marked and I probably would've been lost for awhile if I hadn't have downloaded the map to my phone. We will definitely be back!

hiking
3 months ago

We have hiked this trail in years past and I truly do not remember it being so poorly marked. It is really easy to get off the trail. While I enjoy exploring, I had not planned for such a long trip out. Next time I will be sure to pack more water. A positive is that this trail is the first one my 2 year old son started hiking on his own. Definitely beautiful with lots to see, but might not be for all little people. We did end up carrying him quite a bit as we were off on lots of non-trail paths. Saw a few abandoned strollers from past hikers... definitely don't bring your strollers. Happy we had this app and were able to rescue a few other hiking groups when we had coverage. Download the map!!

4 months ago

Wonderful scenery although trail is hard to find in some spots.

hiking
5 months ago

WOW!

hiking
6 months ago

I hiked this trail along with the full Whispering Pines loop. Well marked and easy to follow.

hiking
6 months ago

6 months ago

Beautiful rock formations and well kept trails... plus a lot of off shoot trails

hiking
6 months ago

love this hike also there is a cave here quite big I have marked on my trip for all to be able to find have fun be careful

hiking
6 months ago

We loved this hike—so much beauty packed into a short, easy hike! I agree that it’s fairly easy to get off the trail so best to download the map. There are some white paint markings on trees but apparently not enough. Another cool place in the area is Hickory Canyon. Both are beautiful!!

6 months ago

It’s definitely one of the most beautiful hikes we’ve taken in the area, and we loved the views. Really gorgeous! The only criticism we had was that there are no real trail markers except some sand on the paths, and some false trails that led us astray. Due to some minor physical limitations, we chose this hike because of the shorter distance and the moderate terrain, but 1.9 miles ended up being 3.3 miles with the unintentional detours, and one hour became two and a half. We encountered three other couples/families that were also unable to locate the trail in places and had gotten turned around. If I had not remembered I had the AllTrails app on my phone, we would have really been lost. Just a few signs to indicate the direction back to the parking area would be beneficial.

Now that we actually know the layout of the trail, we will definitely return.

7 months ago

Still to date my favorite hiking trail I've ever been on inside Missouri.

hiking
7 months ago

Magical hike!! Absolutely beautiful and for the adventurous hiker, so much fun! I saw many hikers sticking to the trail versus veering off just a bit to explore and they missed so much!! Take the time to explore the mini caves and rock formations. I wouldn’t recommend this for small children. Not too crowded. Beautiful streams, clear water, and almost like being in Neverland.

hiking
7 months ago

Very interesting rock formations. Just a couple of areas where it’s hard to tell where the trail goes. In those cases, the app is handy with a downloaded map because cell coverage is spotty.

7 months ago

Beautiful trail. not super kid friendly, kids need to be monitored as there are many bluffs, drop offs, and steep declines/inclines on rocky/rooty trails. watch for copperheads in summer and fall, afterall you are hiking in their backyard. very easy to go off trail. download trail map, spotty service in some areas.

8 months ago

Very pretty...super easy to get off the trail, though.

8 months ago

It was amazing. It was a little hard to follow the trail at some points.

8 months ago

I cannot express how much I LOVED this hike. Lots of different rock formations and elevations changes. It was rough and rugged yet nice and well maintained trails. Yes, parking was tight, but it was more than worth it. I did not find it too crowded on the trail at all even though parking was full plus some. This trail is worth it and you won’t be disappointed.

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