Turkey Pen Hollow Trail

MODERATE 83 reviews
#1 of 14 trails in

Turkey Pen Hollow Trail is a 6.7 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Camdenton, Missouri that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, camping, and backpacking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
954 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

trail running

forest

lake

river

views

wild flowers

rocky

This trail passes through high quality dolomite glades and woodland plant communities. The area in and around this trail is managed with periodic prescribed fire. The trail goes by a large sinkhole, an access to the parks special-use camp, a primitive backpack camping area for large groups, and through Turkey Pen Hollow. After you pass the connector trail leading to the special-use camp, you travel across a large south-facing glade. Lower on this slope is an intermittently wet seep area. The large outcrop of rock is the remnant of the Red Arrow fault line that runs through this part of Camden County. This rock area is where layers of bedrock have shifted in a vertical manner and in other places one layer of rock has pushed other rock layers above it. After you reach the ridge top beyond and hike for a short distance, you can decide to shorten your hike to 4.75 miles by taking white connector 1. Along white connector 1, you will find an intermittent pond. This pond often holds water in the spring and is home to frogs, salamanders and toads as evidenced by the cacophony of their calls both during the day and in the evening.

hiking
5 days ago

The trail was well marked with easy access to the trailhead. There are plenty of trail maps but no bathrooms. The trail is very rocky and narrow making the rating of “moderate” accurate. My two children got excited for a bench at about two miles. They sat down only to realize a minute later that they were COVERED in termites! My five year old was in pure horror! We tried to finish the loop with the shortcut but after a quarter of a mile farther, we decided it was best to turn around. After returning back to the car and fully stripping their clothes, we also found three ticks on my husband and daughter. Heads up that this is not a young kid friendly hike. I wish we would’ve have gotten a chance to see the entire trail and what it has to offer. I gave it three stars because I’m sure it’s a good trial for others, but I wish I’d known it wasn’t for my family. Oh well, you live and you learn.

1 month ago

Great for trail running. I prefer to run it in reverse. It isn’t as hard on your feet and knees at the end when you end at the trail head. The full trail is beautiful, but the shortcut is just as challenging.

hiking
1 month ago

I did a small backpacking trip with a few teenagers on this trail, and we all had a blast. Well marked trails and a nice campground!

2 months ago

I love the solitude of this trail. I run it weekly.

2 months ago

I loved this trail. Just make sure you give yourself enough time to complete and take your time. Would like to come back again. Very beautiful and easy to find. If you don’t want to finish all the way, there is a short cut you can take to take across the path to the finish. Not sure exactly where it’s at but after the 3rd mile maybe. I took it. Lol would have liked to go all the way around if I had enough daylight.

backpacking
2 months ago

Besides being hot which was expect had lot of fun found a great spot to camp with a great view did alot of the other trials too definitely doing it again.

4 months ago

Well marked trail with great valley views, steep drops and lovely creek access. It was a wonderful spring hike. I would not think the view would not be as great with all the leaves on the trees.

5 months ago

Great hike. Didn’t not do the full 7 because I left my cord to charge my phone but when I got back to my vehicle I seen a tower and walked in that direction and found a cave and bridge which led to the HA HA castle which was awesome and I would highly recommend it and I actually ended up doing 7 miles anyway lol

backpacking
6 months ago

Did a light overnight trip here. Walked about 4 miles into the loop and set up a hammock camp near the bypass. Good views, well maintained trails, and enough variance to keep it interesting. Saw deer galore both at camp and while hiking. There were some coyotes in the area but they stayed clear. I'd visit again if I were in the area.

backpacking
6 months ago

Great initial backpacking trail. Didn’t run into too many people.

hiking
8 months ago

Great moderate trail. It was raining and windy when we walked it, but it was still beautiful. Beware that it does get very slippery when wet. Would like to go back in the spring to see the glade flowers bloom. There is a marked shortcut for cutting it down to five miles instead of seven.

hiking
9 months ago

For the season, we couldn't have picked a better day to go for a hike, although I can see where bugs might be an issue during other months. The ecological make up of this trail is what makes it fun. The rock formations and vast praries are beautiful with some unique scenery. The trail was well maintained and easy to access. It didn't feel like we put in the miles, even hiking in to look at a primitive site for camping. It was worth the trip down.

backpacking
9 months ago

Great trail. Plenty long. Only saw one other group the whole weekend.

trail running
11 months ago

A good trail, but overgrown in spots. use bug spray and check for ticks afterwards.

hiking
Friday, July 28, 2017

Good trail, with good periods of shade. However, there is so much undergrowth. Hence, I contracted posion ivy.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

I liked the trail but there was a lot of overgrowth. I must have cleared 1000s of spiderwebs. Clearing the trail of the encroaching brush would help a lot.

hiking
Monday, July 10, 2017

Had a lot of fun hiking this trail with the boyfriend this past weekend!!!

hiking
Friday, July 07, 2017

In the area visiting family and my Brother In Law and I did this today. It would have been a better experience but they obviously have not maintained this trail this year at all. What a shame and a disgrace to whomever is tasked with this job - stealing money from the government. It was about 7.3 miles total, good up and downs but very few big views - you are mostly under a canopy of trees or high bushes, The trail was mostly only 12-18 inches wide so you will weed your way - literally - through a bunch of high grass and overgrowth. Someone should really hold whomever is supposed to maintain these trails accountable.

hiking
Saturday, May 27, 2017

We, took the connector trail so our hike was the 5 mile loop. Walking next to sink holes, through glades, woodlands, oak-sassafras forests, and oak-hickory forests, that Turkey pen is just stunning! Next time we'll have to take the whole 7 miles so we can explore Turkey Pen Hollow.

backpacking
Wednesday, April 12, 2017

My first solo hike ever. Had a wonderful time on a nice spring day. Saw a snake and a ton of lizards. Nice scenery. It was about 83 degrees the day I went and it got pretty hot so I wouldn't wanna do it mid summer. The wild flowers were out lots of leaves and trail easily marked. One of my favorites!

backpacking
Monday, March 13, 2017

Easy to find, well marked, and easy to follow. Took my eight and twelve year olds. The twelve year old and myself carried our backpacks loaded down with the weight that we plan on hiking the Colorado Trail with this summer. Took just over three hours with stopping for a picnic.

hiking
Monday, February 20, 2017

Trail could be better marked, not that it was hard to follow.
Would not like to do this on a hot, summer day.
Great workout on a beautiful day in February, 2017.

backpacking
Friday, February 17, 2017

Great hike, I took the backpack weight that I will be using on the AT....this trail is very rocky, wear good boots or trail runners..hike on✌️

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Done this trail maybe 30 times. Dont expect to see anyone else. Takes me about 3 hours to do the 7 miles at a moderate pace trekking. Good trail run taking about 1.5 hours.

hiking
Sunday, November 13, 2016

A really good day hike that is on the easy scale. Even with the leaves on the ground the trail was easy to follow. I bypassed the bypass and was glad I did. There wasn't any water flowing this time of year, but I will definitely come back in the Spring. I only came across five hikers during the hike so you can find some solitude in your hike.

backpacking
Sunday, September 11, 2016

Great place for first solo backpacking experience. Trails were well marked and cleared. Not too long of a trail either! The only bad part was all of the seed ticks...

hiking
Saturday, September 10, 2016

We enjoyed this trail. We skipped the shortcut and we're glad we did. There's some pretty waterfalls along the 2 mile loop. Start to finish was just under 3 hours.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Great trail that we did together as a family. Probably kid friendly for ages 5 and up.

hiking
Monday, January 25, 2016

Fantastic trail through some great Ozark forest land. Really appreciated the winter beauty of the trail. Total of 6.8 miles of trail and enjoyed every mile of it. Can't wait to try it again in the spring and fall.

hiking
Friday, September 19, 2014

Nice trail, easy walk. Was a little overgrown in places with lots of trees down especially on the loop towards the campsite. Typical Missouri views and topo and well worth the time. Trailhead estimate is 7 hours which is ridiculous, we completed it in a little under three hours with a couple of breaks and carrying 40 pound packs (training!)

All in all worth a look

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