of years in the making
Pickle Springs Natural Area, Farmington, MO
Pickle Springs Natural Area packs
more beautiful scenery into 256 acres than almost any other spot in
Missouri. Along a 2-mile trail near Farmington, hikers can see everything
from sloping rock formations and cool canyons to rare plants and gently
The area’s beauty is million
of years in the making. Its foundation was first formed 500 million
years ago, when the beaches of an ancient sea were preserved as Lamotte
Deposits covered the rock over
time, until erosion started transforming the land. It sculpted arches,
tunnels, waterfalls and giant sandstone boulders called hoodoos. Centuries
later, mammoths roamed the canyons and fed on the area’s lush
Today, visitors follow in the mammoths’ footsteps.
Along the way, they see such interesting sites as the Double Arch,
the Keyhole (pictured on the cover), Mossy Falls, Spirit Canyon, Dome
Rock Overlook and Pickle Spring.
The trail is manageable for even
novice hikers and takes only about an hour to complete. And for those
who just can’t get their fill of nature in two
miles, Hawn State Park is five minutes down the road.
To visit Pickle Springs
Natural Area, take Interstate 55 to Highway 32. Go west on Highway
32, past Hawn State Park, and turn south on AA. Follow AA about 1
mile to Dorlac Road and turn left. Go about 1/2 mile along this gravel
road to the parking lot at the trailhead.
For more information, log onto
www.mdc.mo.gov/areas/natareas/p120-1.htm or call call (573) 290-5730.