St. Joe State Park's location in the old "Lead Belt" and the associated mine tailings used for off-road vehicle riding represent a unique management challenge. The Department of Natural Resources continually looks for opportunities to make any needed health and safety improvements to the park to ensure visitor safety while continuing to make this recreational opportunity available. Signs like this one, posted at multiple locations throughout the park, provide more information.
The following attachments include a letter from the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) about an evaluation of adult off-road vehicle recreational use at St. Joe State Park and maps that show the result of a 2008 sampling of the tailings area that indicate the average level of lead at various locations. The map also indicates other features, including trails.