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

The trail was lightly travelled which was evident by the amount of spider webs I walked through. Over all the trail was clearly marked and the sites were beautiful. I would recommend long pants because of the underbrush and water proof shoes for the cave.

hiking
1 month ago

Path was well maintained and easy to read. The well was a really neat site to see.

We started out behind the old gym and went straight up the hill....and I mean straight. Pretty steep. Once at the top we got a peak at the river and then made our way back down. Nothing spectacular. Did finish along the lake that was hand dug in the 1930's which was nice. I would start and go clockwise next time to come down the steepest part. Make sure to get a tour of the historical buildings while you're there.

walking
2 months ago

Easy, wide, flat mostly graveled trail around the lake. If you start from the boat ramp parking lot the trail starts on the left and goes clockwise around the lake. If starting at 2nd parking lot the trail starts at the dam. There is a 2nd shorter trail around the smaller lake. It connects on each side of the dam. The smaller trail is gravel on the far side of the lake and is a mowed grass path along the parking lot side. Nice little trail.

LOVE this site! whenever someone comes to visit this is a must see. Trail is very easy since it follows an old road along the river. You can hike a deer path on the hill behind the spring to an old chimney and to the old hospital built over a cave entrance. The cave is now barred to protect the bats.

Trail starts at devil's well and contours through the hills with some steep sections. At the cave spur it becomes less maintained as it drops down to the river bottom. Along the river there is about 100 yards of stinging nettles that you have to walk through to get to the cave. Easily washed off at river, I filled water bottles with spring water and washed my legs on way back out. Trail along top goes through some pretty glades and finishes along a creek bottom coming out of the woods into the picnic area by a small lake. Really enjoyed this hike.

This trail starts out behind the rock pavillion. It is pretty steep along a wet weather creek. Path is narrow and rocky but very doable. It crosses the hwy at the top and then levels out at the top through the pine before making it's way down the hill (not as steep) to end at the naturalist cabin near the hatchery. The Naturalist was welcoming and showed my young nieces snakes, turtles and fish along with some hides and bones that they kept in the office. If you go left out of the office you can take a short hike along the spring fed lake and hatchery which loops back along the river. I enjoyed this hike with a group of all ages. There is also a trail around the 7 springs that start the current river. And of course an ice cream or meal at the lodge is always welcomed.

Nice little trail to end the day, it is paved and gravel so easy for all ages. Hiked the hillier pine ridge trail first.

Great short trail, very easy. The spring is stunning. Hidden gem of MO!

hiking
3 months ago

The loop trail and out and back trail to the cave total 5.3 miles. The loop trail mostly goes through forest but there are a couple of glades and some nice bluff views of the valley around the Current River.

Cave Spring is the highlight of the trail. Toward the bottom of the trail leading to the cave there are about 100 yards of stinging nettles that you will have to wade through before coming to the cave. You can then walk on a path back into the cave a little ways or stand in the Current River and enjoy the view of the cave and watch Northern Rough-winged Swallows flying about. The trail back to the trailhead follows for quite a ways what looks like an old logging road.

hiking
3 months ago

Short trail to stairs that lead down to an overlook where you can just see the surface of the largest underground natural lake in Missouri. The temperature drops at least ten degrees as you descend the stairs. A light activated by motion illuminates the lake surface.

hiking
4 months ago

This is a mostly wooded trail that is well blazed and has some wonderful old chinquapin oaks along it. It does partly overlap the Current River Trail that runs from the Current River State Park to Echo Bluff State Park. Heading south on the trail there are a couple of glades that overlook the valley the Current River flows through that are very scenic. Found a gorgeous Chicken of the Woods next to the trail.

hiking
4 months ago

This is a wide, chat covered trail. I'm guessing it's rated moderate because it entails some steep climbs but otherwise it is an easy trail. The trail celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Missouri State Park system so there are educational signs at different stops around the trail that describe Missouri State Park system history. There are two scenic overlook stops that look over the Current River and the surrounding valley the river flows through. The highest scenic overlook has some benches to sit and enjoy the view.

hiking
4 months ago

My GPS tracked this trail as approximately 2.7 miles (the trailhead sign says 2.6) and not 3.9 miles as stated in the above description. Kudos to whoever blazed the trail, as it is extremely easy to follow even though it is lightly used. The trail is entirely wooded except for about 10 yards at the start that pass under power lines. There are some beautiful oak trees along the trail, which are the highlight of the trail. This would make a great spring or fall hike when you can see into the surrounding valleys.

hiking
4 months 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 down the trail, a large Sycamore tree has fallen and blocked the trail. It is possible to climb through branches and then over the tree trunk and continue on the trail to the spring.

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 crossing, you will do some rock climbing and then walk on a 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 hospital, which was built at the turn of the last century.

hiking
5 months ago

Easy walk from the parking lot to some old rock steps leading to the cave entrance. The cave was closed when we were there but you can still stand in the mouth of the cave.

hiking
6 months ago

Quick, educational hike on a well maintained trail.

hiking
6 months ago

Fun loop around a lake. Easy, relatively flat trail. Yellow-rumped Warblers were thick.

The last quarter mile of the dirt road to the trailhead is nearly impassable to small cars. The hike itself was a refreshing walk in the woods. A neat little homestead and out buildings that really demonstrate the self-sufficiency of the homesteaders are the highlight.

hiking
6 months ago

Flat, easy walk around a beautiful state park. This is a nice birding trail.

Short trail. Beautiful spring. Make sure you walk up the path. Noticed that people thought the spring was just the lower level. The spring itself is up higher.

Short hike to a beautiful spot. Hospital ruins are cool. We climbed the cliff to see inside. When driving down the gravel road and it T's, go right and there is parking.

Really cool place. Definitely check out the cavern while you're there too.

hiking
6 months ago

Well maintained trail that is a lot of fun with the family. It started snowing during the hike, which added to the beauty. The start of the trail has a nearly 200 foot ascent in a short distance but after that it is an easy trail.

hiking
7 months ago

So amazing. There are stairs so be prepared. There used to be a neat barn on the way, but vandals burned it down.

Similar to what others said: gorgeous, yet lacking in signage and maintenance. As few hikers attempt it between May and September, however the low ranger staff can’t justify maintaining the path until September. I loved watching river otters cross the Current, as well as having my legs cleaned by minnows while wading.

nature trips
10 months ago

We found this place by chance a few years back. It was beautiful but had an eeriness to the location.

hiking
Monday, September 04, 2017

It's definitely a beautiful hike. Some notes I would like to put out....1. No signal at all so make sure you stay on the trail and don't get lost 2. If you are doing it in September, wear a hat because the spiderwebs are EVERYWHERE #raidersofthelostark 3. There is a dry river bed that has the potential to flood after crazy weather so plan accordingly 4. Wear bug spray, there are allot of horse flies when you sweat. Other than that... great views and pretty trail

hiking
Friday, May 05, 2017

Nice area outside of town. Pretty trail with lots of pine groves to walk through. Nice bridges over the streams going into the lake. The trail splits by the Dam. I went around the lake and walked the gravel road back to the parking area.

hiking
Saturday, March 18, 2017

we hiked 6.26 miles... it was a great trail to hike..Not many people, had some great views on the cliff lookout, and the Spring Cave was pretty Cool..

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