News Release 151

Enjoy spring in Missouri state parks

Volume 39-151 (For Immediate Release)
For more information: 573-751-1010

JEFFERSON CITY, MO., MAY 12, 2011 – This spring’s weather has been tumultuous but Missouri state parks and historic sites continue to be some of the best places to enjoy the great outdoors and take advantage of a new season awakening.

“Missouri state parks and historic sites are open and ready for the public,” said Bill Bryan, Missouri State Parks director. “Our staff is dedicated to repairing and reopening our facilities to welcome the public as soon as it is safe to do so.”

Heavy rains in April and early May temporarily impacted state parks, especially in southern Missouri, including the trout parks of Roaring River, Montauk and Bennett Spring state parks. All three trout parks are now open with all facilities ready for the public. The high water and flooding did not affect the trout hatcheries, and trout stocking continued at normal levels. “You can’t catch your limit if you don’t go,” Bryan said.

Spring is a good time to explore the outdoors on a trail and in Missouri state parks, you can try trails for hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, equestrian and all-terrain vehicles. Take advantage of the spring rains that cascade over the tallest waterfall in the state by hiking the Taum Sauk Trail at Taum Sauk Mountain State Park near Ironton. Explore the Trail of the Four Winds at Lake of the Ozarks State Park near Kaiser on your mountain bike for outstanding views of the lake, spring wildflowers and dramatic rock outcrops.

Stockton State Park offers several springtime favorites including sailing and fishing for crappie. After a day on the water, cook your fresh-caught crappie at one of the park’s secluded walk-in campsites or in a rustic camper cabin.

Missouri offers 85 state parks and historic sites that are operated by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources. The parks and sites offer activities that range from tours through historic homes and caves to camping, fishing, hiking and simply enjoying nature.

Conditions in state parks, especially those located on lakes and streams, change quickly so if certain facilities close temporarily, they also may reopen quickly. Also, even though some areas of the park may be impacted temporarily, other facilities at the park often remain open. The best place to find up-to-date information is on the state park website at This site is updated as soon as conditions change.

For more information about Missouri state parks and historic sites, visit