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

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.

This trail is paved except for about the last 100 yards before reaching Lake Springfield. It would be a nice trail for the elderly or disabled. The first half of the trail runs along the James River and is inside the Missouri Veterans Cemetery. The last half of the trail runs along the edge of mostly open fields. A train track with a bridge divides the two halves. When we were there part of the trail toward the lake end was under ankle deep water but that just added to the fun.

This is a well marked trail that is about 1/4 paved. It travels through a wooded area before running by the lake. The part of the trail by the lake is paved. There are some very nice views of the lake and the power plant across the lake along the paved part of the trail. Parts of the trail were under water due to recent rains. As expected by being in the city, it was a busy trail.

I have hiked this trail my entire life and it only gets more beautiful! It’s quite the workout too! If you aren’t used to it, you will be sore the next day!

We took our 5 kids here today. We had a blast. They have a little packet for kids to find things as you hike. They have so much on the side of educational. We did the long trail which is about an hour the trail is well maintained and also guides came through as we walked and handed out stickers to the kids. They have places to stop and look in the water and play. We will for sure be going back. We loved it.

14 days ago

Very nice trail, although heavily populated in areas. Be aware if you take this trail, there are multiple runners, walkers, and bikers that use this along with families.

This is a nice, short but scenic trail that is perfect if you are looking for a quick walk. We saw deer and ducks during our walk There wasn't too much traffic on the trail. Trail was easy to follow. Would definitely come back.

Pretty good trail just for fun. Nothing too difficult!

Short little jaunt around the nature center grounds with a view of Lake Springfield. There are convenient on-site bathrooms, plenty of parking, and the nature center itself for those interested. This place is a hidden treasure at the south end of Springfield.

I really enjoyed this trail!

1 month ago

Pretty scenery, but the trails are poorly marked and no longer connected to the Greenways Trail system. Perfect for a picnic, fishing or canoeing.

1 month ago


Nice walk with the family... Keep an eye out for turkeys, and deer...

Easy hike.

Cute trail that's close by. Great for an after work lazy walk or jog

2 months ago

Love this place. Have been here a couple times and both times saw a lot of wildlife.

Great place for kids and dogs. Really well maintained.

Close to the city. Variety of trails - some fully paved and short, others longer with more varied terrain. Can be very busy on weekends when the weather is nice.

3 months ago

Not too bad of a trail, but they are not well marked and a GPS may not be a bad idea.

great trails.

3 months ago

Nice scenery and great for a stroll through the woods. I would not suggest going for a few days after it rains, since the paths can get very muddy.

Such a beautiful area! Loved going with the kiddos!

Nice park with a good trail. Some of the trail is paved and some goes up in the bluffs by the lake. There is playground equipment on top of a hill that has a great view.

We started near the entrance to the park on a rare 70 degree day in January and went up the rugged part first. This way at the halfway point you are at the bluff and get a nice rest and beautiful view! If you're lucky you might spot an eagle from the bluff! You can also stop at the marina if you need a drink or a bathroom break. Then returning is all paved trail to wind down!

This is one of my favorite local trails. around to the spring with the deck overlooking it, to the lake overlook. There are a couple of study stations and in the past year they have done a lot of trail work. You will enjoy it. DO IT!!!

Horrible..the people working there were very very rude.

Excellent for bird watching! I will be back.

Pretty good train other than being a bit rundown in areas.

5 months ago

This place is very close to Springfield and there are actually several trails in the area. It is more a "walk in the woods" than a hike and there was no particular scenery to look at. It would be excellent on a mountain bike, I think.

road biking
5 months ago

The first 8-9 miles starting from Springfield until you reach the far end of Willard are paved and well maintained. The trail is then crushed stone for several miles and decently maintained but then gives way to varying degrees of upkeep. Sometimes it's down to a single, very narrow dirt path. Some areas they dumped large gravel unsuitable for any kind of traffic in my opinion. Some areas the trees, shrubs and grass are overtaking the trail. Spiders and their webs stretching across the trail can be so abundant, you'll be stopping every few mintues to wipe all the spiders and webs from yourself and bike. Once freezing weather hits, the spiders will not be an issue. The last 5-6 miles are paved again.
There's plenty of shade along most of the trail with a few short open stretches with none.
Of course its pretty flat being an old rail line.
There's not much in the way of scenery, wildlife or historical sites.
There's more foot and bike traffic from Springfield through Willard due to its proximity to more populated areas and being paved. Not that it's terribly busy but If you want less traffic, avoid this section.

7 months ago

There's only 2 trails. Both are nice but not very long. There are a few nice bluff lookouts and small trails around the water if you can find them. Usually quite a few runners and family's at the playground.

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