It is a jewel for this part of Missouri but relatively unknown. There are nice campgrounds, views, and great trails. Though the trail can be difficult to follow it's worth the effort.
There are great campgrounds but they are only open April to October. A vault toilet is available year round at the parking for Shelter 1. In the winter, park at Shelter 1, which is the trailhead for the west side. It is about 0.25 mile hike through the woods (cross the paved road and head toward the trailhead).
This is a long, primarily horse trail, with views of the lake on the Shoreline Trail East
. The trail winds around (almost on top of) itself at times, providing several opportunities to cut through if you are not able to hike the entire trail. There are quite a few ups and downs on this trail (not typical for this part of Missouri) so this trail is fairly difficult.
For the first few miles, there are a few white connector trails between the Shoreline Trail East
and Boundary Trail East
. Looking at a map, you can see that it is so close to itself that at most points, you can cut through the woods if need be. The Boundary Trail East
and Shoreline Trail East
are well-marked for the first few miles. However, toward the back part of the trail, there are no official markings, but there are, at this time, taped markings. But don't expect these to be in place down the road.
Expect several blowdowns and lots of rock along the way. This trail would be best done during the fall and winter when ticks, snakes, and poisonous plants are nonexistent. Views are great during the winter as well. Plus the trail is not as utilized so you're more likely to have the place to yourself. Avoid deer hunting season.
If hiking during campground closure, park at Shelter 1 and it is about 0.25 mile hike through the woods to reach this trailhead. Shelter 1 is at the trailhead for the west side of this trail system.