Explore the most popular kid friendly trails in Missouri with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

A little steep in spots, but a nice hike. Very pretty scenery! Wear your bug spray! Trail is narrow in spots.

hiking
1 day ago

This is a flat easy trail that has the Current River on one side and bluffs on the other for a good part of the trail. About half way to Welch Spring, a large Sycamore tree has fallen and is blocking the trail. It is possible to climb through the branches and then over the tree trunk and continue to the end where the spring sits. On the other side of the spring is an old hospital that you can climb to by crossing the rocks to your right as you look at the spring. Once on the other side of the "rock bridge", you will do a little rock climbing and then walk on a narrow ledge above the spring. Don't slip or you will have about a 15 foot drop into the spring. On the other side is the ruins of an old hospital that was built at the turn of the last century.

walking
1 day ago

This trail is about one mile in length if you go out and back (1/2 mile each way). The entire length of the trail is paved. There were some interesting rock and water features along the way. The highlight was a beautiful Red-Eared Slider crossing the trail that posed for a photo.

hiking
1 day ago

This was an enjoyable hike through the Ozark woods. Several wildflowers may be found along the trail and there are a couple of wet weather waterfalls. While the trail is mostly wooded, there are some glades that provide a nice view. A thunderstorm blew in while I was at the half way point, which did create a little excitement. The highlight was a Whitetail Deer next to the trail that made a loud snort and ran off as I did some trail running to avoid the rain and lightening.

This trail follows a steep paved service road uphill (if you go left at the start of the loop) and then follows along Highway H leading to the park’s visitor center (which has a great collection of nature and hiking books for sale) and finally it overlaps the Blue Heron Trail back to the starting point.

Pretty trail and better than I imagined. Will do this again.

This trail is amazing! my husband and I hiked it May 24th, 2018 in the morning. We saw and heard lots of birds and butterflies we're abundant and we're loving the wildflowers in the glades. The views are breathtaking and visibility was great, and I'll definitely be back in autumn to see the leaves.

We also saw lots of Collared Lizards, including a male in his bright breeding colors. Mina Sauk falls were beautiful!

As for the terrain, I didn't have any problems. As long as proper shoes are worn and care is taken in the more rocky areas, it's a very doable hike.

Knocked these two out today along with the equestrian trail. Saw a lot of wildlife on the trails with deer, lizards, chipmunks, turtles, and a skunk that wouldn’t let me pass for some time. Take away the skunk and the three dozen or so webs I ran in to and the hikes were a great way to start my summer vacation from teaching.

I absolutely love this trail, it's the best one in the whole Independence area. I've grown up biking and hiking this trail my whole life. You can plan a section or you can make a whole day of it and go the distance. If you park at either end of the trail and complete the round trip it's around 30 miles so hydrate and bring snacks. Take you time and enjoy!

hiking
3 days ago

Paved path to some castle ruins. Couple of interesting overlooks. Good family outing.

hiking
3 days ago

Honestly just not too impressive. I’m sure we missed the wildflower season, and with the trail slightly overgrown all we saw were ticks... Will do the other trails instead of this one next time.

A very easy all paved trail from the Table Rock lake dam to the state park marina. 4.4 miles round trip. It has several access points to the lake and lots of places to stop and rest or reflect along the way. Hikers of all levels will enjoy this easy route.

Will definitely do this hike again. The trail is paved until you reach the Cats Paw, which is the lookout, then gravel trails split off each side. We walked around the lookout and down the rock to the St. Francois River rapids. Really cool area. We hung out on the rocks for about an hour.

Mina Sauk was a good challenging hike for me. I will advise that you should have on some decent shoes for walking on a rugged terrain; this trail had a lot of rocks on it to hop over. You will see a mini alternate path to bypass the rocks in some spots. There's also a lot of mud and some puddles after it rains, too. For those who may question taking a walking stick on this trail, I would advise doing it, even if you're just entertaining the thought. I didn't need one, but this is a trail where you may want to err on the side of caution and just do it.

The first part of the trail didn't appear to be marked very well, especially when you kind of got used to the rocks being your path. Download an offline map from Alltrails (yes, you'll have to pay for a subscription, but it's worth it to me). the only time the offline map didn't work is when it started pouring down rain on me halfway through my hike, lol (I was more worried about my phone getting too wet at that point, lol). At that point, the Ozark Trail shared the path with the Mina Sauk Trail, and you could follow those markers, in addition to the Mina Sauk markers, all the way to the parking lot. You also have access to the Highest Point form the trail as well.

As for the Mina Sauk Falls, you do have to shimmy your way down the hill to see it better; make like you're taking the Ozark Trail to get there. It was nice to lay back on a rock, look up, and listen to all the sounds.

There weren't many people there that day, and it was a Saturday. For me, that made for a more peaceful hike.

Overall, it was a moderate level hike, but more on the "hard" side of moderate, in my opinion. It just had to do with the terrain and the incline going back up. I still thought the views were worth the adventure! I'd go back!

backpacking
5 days ago

Set out to do a 2 night backpacking trip. Hiked 5 miles UP the mountain, set up camp, played around a bit, then prepared to take cover from the storm that, according to the weather man, wasn't supposed to happen. Rode that storm out in the tent (it was only 3pm) and, after checking the weather and surveying the storm headed toward us (twice as big as the first), we decided it was best not to stick around. We hiked 5 miles back down the mountain, literally walking through a creek the whole way and crossing several water falls because there was so much water from the first rain. We made it back out about 30 minutes before the next storm hit. There were at least 2 or 3 more rounds that night. Trail was difficult, rocky and wet. Probably be a great trail in the Fall. Spring rain and Missouri humidity make it difficult this time of year. All in all, a good workout.

walking
5 days ago

The area is pretty, with a smooth, wide, paved path. If you are wanting a place to be able to enjoy a nice walk or jog, this is a great option!!

Excellent! Especially on cool mornings in the springtime and

I loved this trail! We became trail runners tonight, and other than the mud created from yesterday’s rain, it was terrific! We will do this trail again!

Trail entrance is close to 435 and close to a shooting range. The noise from both is a bit distracting at first but as you continue on the trail you can barely hear either. Trail is in decent shape and provides some challenging hills. Differently would consider this a moderate trail for hiking. Not sure I will hike this again. Nothing spectacular about this trail.

This was a pleasant hike with some unexpected views. The elevation varied greatly but the hike was not strenuous. There were a lot of fallen trees and the path was grown over in parts. Trail markings were also not obvious.

well maintained walking path. asphalt.

This is a lovely trail! Some areas are paved, some not so smoothly though. There are some quite steep inclines, some rather rocky uneven bits, and a rather large flight of steps. I would rate it closer to moderate and would skip it if you have mobility issues. I took trekking poles and was glad. Some path revisions have been made and the trail was a bit over 2.5 miles, although perhaps just temporarily. It was a beautiful spring day after the rain and the woods were lush and green with lots of humidity! Gorgeous scenery, lots of chirpy birdies, and a good breeze at the top of the ridge.

Lots of fun things to look at and discuss while walking/hiking.

What a gem of a trail! The nature center is a must stop before heading out on the trail and has several interesting exhibits on the Missouri outdoors. The trail is a stop on the Great Missouri Birding Trail and didn’t disappoint as the trail passes through several habitats each abundant with different bird species. The highlight of the several bird species spotted was a Mississippi Kite. The trail is well maintained and marked. A beautiful Broadhead Skink with a bright orange-reddish head sat next to the trail and allowed us to view him for several minutes. I will definitely do this trail again.

Kinda boring but overall not bad

This trail is really well maintained and has access points to fun spots to play in a river. My 3 and 5 year olds enjoyed it and could handle the short distance just fine.

I loved this hike encountering different areas and terrain. Even made the little climb after the creek crossing with two dogs on leash. Very peaceful.

One of my favorite Rockbridge hikes.

This was a nice trail. I enjoyed it very much. As you get into the higher levels, just know that sometimes there are teenagers sitting on the bluffs and “might” be smoking pot. All in all it was perfect for an afternoon walk.

Great views and so peaceful.

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