Places We’ve Been

Trip Report: Backpacking on the Hercules Glades Pees Hollow Trail

The next couple of months are going to be very busy for us, and opportunities for getting out hiking or backpacking will be limited. The prospect of a spell of warm Ozarks winter weather gave us a chance to squeeze in a midweek backpacking trip. We rearranged our work schedules and took off to Hercules […]

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Short Hike on the Yellow Trail at Busiek

The Yellow Trail at Busiek State Forest

We decided to fit in a quick hike at Busiek this weekend. We were originally planning on going backpacking at Hercules Glades, but life (this time in the form of pet-sitting for friends) threw a spanner into that plan. Not wanting to miss the opportunity to test some of the new backpacking gear we’ve bought, […]

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If wishes were ponies

I’d have a whole lot of pack horses by now. This time last year (2015) we thought we were getting back into our hiking / backpacking stride, and we lost it. After about three hikes we stopped. Lots of work came in and we both spent most of the year tied to our desks and […]

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Another Short Hike at Busiek

We’re still working on getting back in condition. Today, we wanted to increase the distance and elevation climbed while, not getting too wet and muddy, and not driving too far. We settled on hiking the complete Silver Trail at Busiek State Forest and Wildlife Area.

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An Afternoon Hike at Compton Hollow Conservation Center

I have a confession. We stopped hiking in 2013, it wasn’t deliberate. First we missed our ‘annual’ Spring Break backpacking trip, then we both got tied up with work. I abandoned my semi-retired state, and getting out just faded away. No backpacking, almost no hiking, kayaking or fishing. It all stopped. We made an attempt […]

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Glade Top Trail – Mark Twain National Forest – Taney County & Ozark County Missouri

The Glade Top Trail is not a recognised hiking or backpacking route. It is a spectacular drive of over 23 miles on unpaved roads within 60 miles of Springfield and Branson. It’s especially worth visiting in the fall.

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Hercules Glades Wilderness – Pees Hollow Trail Day Hike

We’ve not been getting out enough of late so we grabbed a chance on Saturday to see some fall color and hike the Pees Hollow Trail at Hercules Glades Wilderness.

The Pees Hollow Trail runs north from the Hercules Tower Trailhead off of Highway 125.

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Trip report: Backpacking in Hercules Glades – September 2012

Taking advantage of a long weekend, we took Lanie with us on a three day backpacking trip to Hercules Glades. Our plan was to map some of the western trails with the GPS, try to find the Spring we think Rock Spring Trail is named after, and show Lanie the falls.

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Trip report: Memorial Day weekend backpacking at Hercules Glades Wilderness

Memorial Day weekend 2011. We took advantage of the long weekend to go backpacking at Hercules Glades Wilderness and spent three nights in the wilderness.

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Two nights camping at Big Bay Campground, Table Rock Lake, Missouri

We braved the 100°F plus temps to spend some time by Table Rock lake. What we found were hot sunny days, a lot of forgetfulness, rain filled nights, and a villainous squirrel…

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Berry Bend Campground – Harry S Truman Lake, Missouri

Mist and low clouds wafting over Truman Lake in the morning while the sun breaks through, lighting the shore. A motorboat speeds by.

Berry Bend Campground. sits on a promontory reached via short causeway on the Osage River Arm of Harry S Truman Lake, 29 Miles from Clinton Missouri, 18 miles from the junction with Highway 13 and 11 miles from Warsaw Missouri.

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Big Bay Recreation Area, Shell Knob, Missouri

A van and two tents at a family campsite at Big Bay Recreation Area on Table Rock Lake.

On the shore of Table Rock Lake, near the town of Shell Knob, Missouri, lies the Big Bay Recreation Area. Unique on Table Rock, it’s the only campground owned by Mark Twain National Forest. It’s a primitive campground, meaning there is no electricity, no drinking water or showers, though there are flush toilets. But most of the 35 campsites are along the shore of the lake which can be accessed by a short path. Screening between the campsites is quite good, so it’s a great place to have your own little private summer lake holiday.

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Places to go: Piney Creek Wilderness

Right off the bat, the most unusual thing about this Wilderness area is that its boundaries circumscribe the entire drainage of Piney Creek. So you always start on a ridge and go down into the valley of the same creek system. There isn’t a lot of up and down all day hiking. Once you’re down in the valley it’s flat. Piney Creek opens into Table Rock Lake on the east, allowing access to and from the lake…

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Ozarks Hikes: Sac River Trail

Girl sitting in the middle of the Sac River Trail in the fall, surrounded by trees.

There’s a little-known trail just north of Springfield, within the city limits, that will give you miles of moderately rugged hiking and exposure to streams, woods, and open fields. The Springfield-Greene County Park Board owns the 300 acres that contain well over 8 miles of natural surface single track. The trail is rocky in places, muddy in places, and winds back and forth an amazing amount. There are no steep climbs but the trail goes up and down enough, and has many small seasonal stream crossings and plenty rugged rocks to give you a decent hiking workout.

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Trip report: Hercules Glades day hike with MDC

Hikers stopped for lunch at the Long Creek Falls, Hercules Glades Wilderness

We wanted to backpack in the Hercules Glades Wilderness, but we’d never been there. We decided to reconnoiter the Wilderness first, in preparation for our first ever backpacking trip. We found out that  MDC’s Springfield Nature Center was organizing a ‘Hiking Club’ trip to Hercules Glades, so we signed up to go. The group is limited […]

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Camping at Berryman Trail & Camp

Mark Twain National Forest sign for Berryman Trail and Campground

Today we were up early (despite my late night fishing trip with Tom yesterday) and drove the 250 miles to St Louis, where we left the girls with their father to spend some time with him in Chicago. We then headed off to check out some nearby campsites. We’re really getting the camping bug. Camping […]

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