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Missouri Hiking Trail Finder

This site is designed to provide quick, organized access to informative Missouri hiking websites. Private hiking enthusiasts like you have created excellent web pages on Missouri hiking trails -- then posted those pages on free web servers -- only to be ignored by search engines. The purpose of this site is to provide a way to find these personal hiking pages, and make your research easier.

  • American Discovery Trail The ADT totals 343 miles in Missouri. For 154 miles, the ADT follows the route of Lewis & Clark along the Missouri River from St. Charles to Boonville on the Katy Trail. "Official" site.

  • Bell Mt. Wilderness good site with photos & concise description. Must see if headed to Bell Mt.

  • Cedar Creek Trail System Mark Twain NF. Good page by Danny McMurphy.

  • The Devils Backbone Wilderness Area -- Mark Twain National Forest offers on-trail hiking, off-trail hiking, primitive camping, backpacking, and more. Site is very goo, has great map links, by

  • General Danny's Missouri Backpacking & Hiking Trails Reviews. This is universally regarded as the best all-around website for Missouri slackpackers. In the webmaster's own words: "This website is devoted to a review of Missouri backpacking and hiking trails. This site is not meant to be all inclusive but instead offers the 'best' Missouri trails." Outstanding site by Danny McMurphy.

  • General website has clickable map, also menu driven, of about 20 key hikes, most in the St. Louis environs. Taum Sauk, Buford Mt., Hickory Canyons, Mark Twain NF, Ozark Trail, Samuel A. Baker State Park & many others. Excellent descriptions, details, and photos. Well done site, plenty of content, run by Nick Kasoff.

  • General along the lines of the above site, this one is called Must be nice to live in a state where you can make a proper name using the official abbreviation. Let's say you opened a cigar store, call it MoCigars, right? It would work just fine until you had something beginning with "Mo." For instance, if you were a mortician, or perhaps a motivational speaker, it could be troublesome. Anyway, this is a blog site by a dude named Tom, who writes about his various hiking adventures around the Show Me State. But it's "mo" than just a blog; has plenty of helpful information, maps, etc. Worth a look.

  • Grand Gulf State Park You can explore this Ozark wonder by hiking a few hundred yards to several miles, depending on your adventure level. With permission from the Missouri State Park staff, there are a few caves that may be explored (some caves require a special permit, all require permission). Good, informative webpage by "Jim" on the website.

  • Kansas City/General Kansas City Outdoor Club Inc. (KCOC) is a nonprofit organization of over 200 outdoor enthusiasts from throughout the Metropolitan area. Its purpose is to offer outdoor recreational opportunities and to educate and train its members in outdoor skills. Group meets monthly in Mission, KS and promotes a host of outdoor as well as social events. Good group, click and find out more.

  • Katy Trail From Sedalia to St. Charles, America's longest rails-to-trails project. Official site with somewhat annoying frames.

  • Lake of the Ozarks State Park brief descriptions of 10 various trails. Good introduction anyway. From Missouri Dept of Natural Resources.

  • Mark Twain National Forest Index of 30+ trails with links to pretty darn good information. Surprisingly in-depth for a Forest Service site.

  • Ozark Hikes general webpage with punchlist and descriptions for notable Ozarks trails, focus on Iron County region. Well done, on the Nature Walks website.

  • St. Louis Area Gateway Trail Net provides info on a few very nice trails in the area. An active community organization.

  • St. Louis Area HikeClub of St. Louis -- official website. The HikeClub of St. Louis is a day hiking group that coordinates and leads day hikes in the St. Louis, Southeastern Missouri, South Central Missouri, and Southern Illinois areas. Informative site, maintained by founder Chris Rufkahr.

  • Santa Fe National Historic Trail Loosely preserved corridor from Missouri to New Mexico bisects Kansas, Oklahoma and Colorado. It is frequently viewed from the comfort of an automobile, but numerous sections can only be hiked. This page is part of the Kansas Heritage site, and is about the most comprehensive. Other useful links include the official National Park Service site, as well as the more comprehensive Santa Fe Trail Association site. Another helpful guide to get you started is this site, which focuses on Colorado & New Mexico.

  • Springfield Area Ozark Greenways page. An active group in SW Missouri.

  • Taum Sauk Trail Between Pilot Knob, MO (starting at Fort Davidson) and Johnson Shut-ins State Park; 20 miles each way. Good Description and info by Danny McMurphy.

  • Thousand Hills Trail five mile trail traverses both Big Creek State Forest and Thousand Hills State Park and features a bigtooth aspen forest. The western portion of the trail follows the shoreline of Forest Lake and offers good opportunities for viewing waterfowl and other wildlife. Site by the Missouri Dept of Natural Resources.

  • Trail Creek Nature Trail Trail near Mt. Moriah loosely following an ancient Indian trail. Owned by Bill and Deleta Dinsmore, this couple elected to share their "wealth" with interested outdoor enthusiasts. Well done website for this northern Missouri hiking trail, also offers camping opportunities.

  • Trail of Tears National Historic Trail Traces the forced exodus of the Cherokee people to Oklahoma. In 1987, Congress acknowledged the significance of the Trail by establishing the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail. The National Park Service administers the Trail in cooperation with federal, state, and local agencies; the Cherokee Nation and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians; interested groups; and private landowners. Great site by Danny Farrow.

  • Washington State Park - 1000 Steps Trail easy mile & a half trail, constructed by the CCC. Anytime you find a trail or structure built by the CCC you can be sure of three things: You're seeing part of history, the young people building it were hopeful that future generations would enjoy it (that's you), and the beauty of their construction technique is timeless. Anyway this page on features a nice little write-up and some details, directions, etc.

If I have to walk, I'm gonna get there just the same...

Would you think of the Show Me State as a mecca for hikers? Believe it or not, Missouri has more marked miles of hiking trails than any other state east of Texas. Broad prairies, wild rivers, sandstone canyons, rugged hills, and some of the most diverse forests. It's a great hiking destination, so it's not surprising then that a number of books are offered. The one to start with is Hiking Missouri from the America's Best Day Hiking Series, by Kevin Lohraff. These are shorter routes, geared toward the "novice" hiker. Moving up to intermediate, Missouri Hiking Trails: A Detailed Guide to Selected Hiking Trails on Public Land in Missouri by Ramon D. Gass, Charles W. Schwartz & Steve Gum is the book to "graduate" to. It mixes day hikes, backpacking trips, and what have you. Outstanding reference book.

You probably won't want to move on from Gass et al, but in case you want the guidebook equivalent of a double black diamond ski trail, Ozark Hideaways: Twenty-Seven Day Trips for Hiking and Fishing by Louis C. White is the one for you. If you aren't afraid to bushwack, cross private property, and generally get outside your comfort zone, this book will point you to some truly hidden and generally secret gems. It's hard to find; sometimes this link has a rare used copy available.

-- Rick Bolger

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Want to add YOUR Missouri hiking page? It's free, it's easy, and there are no strings attached. Please click the "submit a site" button, above left, for instructions and complete information.

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