There is nothing quite so good for the soul as backpacking. You carry everything you need with you. Your experience is pared down to the bare elements of providing for yourself. Nothing gets in the way of the experience of being with nature.
Backpacking isn’t allowed everywhere. In heavily hiked areas, for instance, camping is often banned and that means backpacking is out. We’ve compiled a list of trail systems where camping is allowed along the trail for your backpacking enjoyment.
The learning curve with backpacking is steep. It seems most of us either go to an outfitter shop and buy way too much gear for our first trip or we try to use our car camping equipment and spend the first trip miserable and sleepless. We want to flatten that learning curve and give you ideas and information about backpacking in the Ozarks. The climate, the bug life, the terrain are all very unique here what advice works on the west coast might not work so well here. Read through our articles to learn from our mistakes!
Explore our Backpacking Gear section to see what gear we recommend for Backpacking in the Ozarks.
In the Ozarks, we have much public land that is available for recreation. Each of those properties is managed by a government agency, some local, some state, and some federal. Here are some of the agencies which own and manage our public lands in the Ozarks.
We’ve found the official trail guides and brochures are sometimes out of date. We are producing our own maps from the GPS data collected as we are hiking and backpacking. As time allows we’re creating new maps and adding them here. KMZ files are included for download, so that you can view them in Google Earth or on your GPS if it accepts KMZ files. The files also include full USGS topo maps.