Ozark Trail Association Taum-A-Hawk Hiking Race 2018

The Ozark Trail Association is proud to announce the 2nd annual Taum-A-Hawk Hiking Race, a one-day event open to the public, to take place on Saturday, June 9th, 2018 along thirteen miles of the Ozark Trail Taum Sauk Section from Taum Sauk Mountain State Park to Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park located in Iron County, Missouri. Traversing through the most scenic and...

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Hiking race between Missouri state parks coming in June

The Ozark Trail Association has an upcoming event that hiking enthusiasts may want to join. The association has recently announced its inaugural Taum-A-Hawk Hiking Race set for June 10, 2017. A one-day event open to the public, hikers will traverse the 13 miles of the Ozark Trail from Taum Sauk Mountain State Park to Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park located in Iron County,...

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The Ozark Trail Could Make Missouri a Hiking Destination. Why Isn’t It Finished?

Forty years ago this week, state and federal officials in Missouri issued a dry document to announce a grand ambition. In a 43-page proposal dated February 7, 1977, they stated their aim to blaze a footpath through the Ozarks, the rugged highlands that roll across southern Missouri. It wouldn’t be easy. The native flora, fauna, terrain and certain human occupants...

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Book offers guide to Ozarks hiking trails

Jim Warnock, principal at Arkansas’ Alma Intermediate School, wrote “Five-Star Trails: The Ozarks – 43 Spectacular Hikes in Arkansas and Missouri,” which was published in August. Warnock’s guide offers hiking advice, detailed trail descriptions, GPS coordinates, driving directions and topographical maps. A “recommended hikes”...

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144-mile hiking and biking trail in Missouri’s near future

A 144-mile stretch of a former railroad line is expected to be transferred to the state by the end of next year for use as a hiking and biking trail, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon said December 20, 2016. Nixon was at Ameren headquarters in St. Louis to announce details of plans to develop the former Rock Island rail line from Windsor, in western Missouri, to Beaufort, about 60...

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Missouri’s Huckleberry Ridge offers ‘knock-the-cobs-out’ hiking

Huckleberry Ridge Conservation Area along Route K, 5 miles east of Pineville, Missouri, offers get-the-blood-pumping hiking up rocky ridges, down steep hollows, along dry creek beds and over fallen trees. It’s an area of dense forest with only vague trail markers, where you must keep your sense of direction and your wits. Occasionally, a compass comes in handy. The...

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Hiking a challenge at Granny’s Acres

The trails at Granny’s Acres Conservation Area near Warsaw, Mo., wind through woodlands, up and down steep hills, and across shady valleys cut by small streams. This oak and hickory-dominated woodland is a pretty place for a late autumn or winter walk. The signed hiking loops range from 2.6 to 4.1 miles in length. “It’s kind of a unique area,”...

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Missouri towns see Rock Island line as another path to prosperity

Many Missouri business owners are preparing for the state to finish conversion of the former Rock Island Railway into a hiking and biking trail. “The trail would stretch about 200 miles in Missouri, from Pleasant Hill, a town half an hour southeast of Kansas City, to Beaufort in the south-central part of the state. It also might loop with the Katy Trail, creating...

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Proposed 145-mile Missouri hiking, biking trail

A proposal to transform an abandoned Missouri rail corridor into a 145-mile, cross-state biking and hiking trail is drawing praise from outdoor enthusiasts and concerns from some landowners. If converted, the Missouri Rock Island Trail would stretch from Windsor in the western part of the state to the Franklin County town of Beaufort in the east while twice crossing the...

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Trekking Along the Nuclear Waste Adventure Trail

If the idea of standing on top of a mammoth pile of nuclear waste sounds appealing, then Weldon, Missouri, is the place for you. The waste lies beneath a structure that resembles an enormous ancient burial tomb. There’s even a platform at the top of the 7-story-high mound where visitors can take in the view. The American government refers to the area as the Weldon Spring...

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Second cross-Missouri hiking-biking trail under consideration

A group that advocates for creating biking and hiking trails along abandoned rail lines wants a second cross-state trail in Missouri that would link with the Katy Trail to establish a 400-mile loop across the state. The Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is one of several organizations seeking to buy 145 acres of an abandoned rail corridor from Ameren Corp. The St. Louis-based...

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Wilson’s Creek trails tell story of Civil War battle

Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield, just a mile or so south of Republic High School, Missouri, where a network of walking trails takes you more than 150 years into the past. It’s here that 537 Union and Confederate soldiers killed each other and thousands were wounded over the course of two hot days in August 1861. Both sides hoped the fight would determine...

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Henning hike offers break from Branson

Just five minutes past the giant King Kong on the building, the go-cart tourist track and the White Water splash park, you will step into one of the most serene natural areas in the Ozarks. Still within Branson, MO city limits, the Ruth and Paul Henning Conservation Area in the northwest part of town offers more than 5.5 miles of glade and forest hiking paths that leave...

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Missouri couple hikes 50 states in 14 years

There’s the sharp smell of sulfur fumes emanating from the lava fields in Hawaii. And the strange-looking deer they found tangled in a fence in Nebraska. Oh, and the eight stitches she got from a nasty fall at Devils Tower in South Dakota. Relaxing in their comfortable center city home in Springfield, MO, the memories come in a rush for Ester and Bill Bultas. Although...

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Big plans ahead for Missouri’s longest – and relatively unknown – hiking trail

The Ozark Trail, despite its impressive 362-mile length in the heart of some of Missouri’s most scenic lands, remains a mystery to many. It doesn’t have an identifiable image that springs to one’s mind, like the Appalachian Trail or Pacific Crest Trail might. “I don’t think people really know it’s there, especially in the Springfield area,” says trail regular Ron...

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New hiking trail opens in Iron County, Missouri

Iron County has a new hiking trail thanks to county native Rob Cofer, a resource assistant with the Missouri Department of Conservation. In December the MDC completed construction of a 2.3 mile loop trail on Ketcherside Mountain Conservation Area, located approximately six miles south of Ironton on Highway 21. The trail is accessed from the Claybaugh Creek Trailhead...

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Little Sac Woods offers an easy day hike on 7.3 miles of trails

With 772 acres, two parking areas and interconnecting trails totaling about 7.3 miles, the Little Sac Woods Conservation Area near Springfield, Missouri offers a secluded spot for an afternoon hike through hardwood forest leading to a high glade that overlooks the long valley carved by the Little Sac River on its way to Stockton Lake. The trails are relatively easy to...

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Hiking one of Missouri’s prettiest trails

Missouri has been named the “Best Trails State” by American Trails, a national, nonprofit organization working on behalf of the nation’s trails systems. The award is presented every two years to the state that has made tremendous contributions to promote and improve its trails. Missouri State Parks has more than 230 trails in 58 parks and historic sites. A guide to all...

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