Park Trails

at Cuivre River State Park

Big Sugar Creek Trail

  • Backpacking
  • Hiking

Length: 3.75 Miles View map

This trail traverses the northern part of the Big Sugar Creek Wild Area and the Lincoln Hills Natural Area, crossing two small tributary valleys of Big Sugar Creek. From “keyhole bluff’ along the southwest portion of the trail, you can look down on a section of the Ozark-like Big Sugar Creek. The northern part of the trail goes through open woodland, which is being restored to its original character by the use of prescribed burns. White connector 6 is available to provide access to Lone Spring Trail. This is a moderately strenuous trail.

You may experience:

  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
  • Water/stream crossings without bridges
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
3.75 Miles 2 hours, 50 minutes Loop Blue

West side of the park road, midway between Camp Derricotte and Camp Sherwood Forest

Blackhawk Point Trail

  • Bicycling/Mountain Biking
  • Hiking

Length: 5.75 Miles View map

This is a new trail that is expected to open in June 2011.

The trail begins at the CCC stone shelter and runs down the Geode Creek valley before climbing to the top of Frenchman’s Bluff. The trail follows Cheatham Road for 1.75 miles and then heads back into the woods toward Blackhawk Point on Frenchman’s Bluff. This point offers a remote and spectacular view of the Cuivre River Valley. The trail follows Frenchman’s Bluff for about three miles, offering scenic views along the route. This section of trail shares about three miles of Cuivre River Trail, which is open to equestrian use. The trail then returns to the Geode Creek valley and shares a section of the Hamilton Hollow Trail before ending at the CCC shelter. Bicyclists should yield the right of way to horses and hikers.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
  • Bluffs or drop-offs next to trail
  • Water/stream crossings without bridges
  • Road/highway crossing
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
5.75 Miles 5 hours, 45 minutes Loop Yellow

CCC stone shelter

Blazing Star Trail

  • Hiking

Length: 2 Miles View map

On this natural surface trail, you may experience rocks and roots. Beginning at the parking lot shared with Prairie Trail, this trail crosses through a wooded creek valley, and enters an open expanse of tallgrass prairie. It then alternates between wooded savanna and open prairie, until the loop returns through the creek valley and back up to the parking lot. A separate trail entrance connects the trail loop to the campground.  Summer and fall are the best times to see many of the wildflowers, while the tall prairie grasses reach their peak during the late summer and fall.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
2 Miles 1 hour, 30 minutes Loop Orange

Southern side of Sac Prairie

Cuivre River Trail

  • Backpacking
  • Hiking
  • Horseback Riding

Length: 11.25 Miles View map

This trail is divided into the north and south loops. The north loop consists of a portion of the formerly named Big Sugar Creek Trail that was open to horseback riding. This section has been renamed, but is still open for equestrian use. This loop traverses much of the Big Sugar Creek Wild Area, where you will encounter Sugar Bluff, bottomland forests and a large wet weather spring.

The south loop follows Frenchman’s Bluff for several miles, offering great views of the Cuivre River valley. The trail heads back into the Big Sugar Creek valley, eventually leading you back to your starting point. Keep an eye out for evidence of the Civilian Conservation Corps, several examples of its stone work exist along the trail as well as the quarries where stone was collected.

White connectors 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 offer more than four miles of additional trail. With these, the entire system offers 15.5 miles of multi-use trail.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
  • Bluffs or drop-offs next to trail
  • Water/stream crossings without bridges
  • Road/highway crossing
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
North Loop
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
4 Miles 4 hours Loop Orange

Equestrians generally access from connectors 4 and 5 from the south loop; Hikers access from across Park Road, midway between Camp Sherwood Forest and Camp Derricotte

South Loop
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
7.25 Miles 7 hours, 15 minutes Loop Red Equestrian camping and day-use area (equestrians)

Frenchman's Bluff Trail

  • Hiking

Length: 1.5 Miles View map

This popular trail follows Geode Creek for a short distance before winding up a hill and emerging on top of Frenchman’s Bluff. The 120-foot-high bluff, formed in Burlington limestone, offers outstanding vistas of the Cuivre River valley. After continuing along the bluff for approximately half a mile, the trail returns to the picnic shelter. This trail is relatively easy to hike, but care should be taken when on top of the bluff as the loose gravel can make your footing unsure. The trail is marked in a counterclockwise direction. Portions of this trail are shared with Cuivre River Trail and are open to equestrian use.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
  • Bluffs or drop-offs next to trail
  • Bridges and/or structural crossings
  • Road/highway crossing
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
1.5 Miles 1 hour, 30 minutes Loop Blue

West side of the picnic shelter

Hamilton Hollow Trail

  • Hiking

Length: .90 Mile View map

This trail begins and ends near the stone picnic shelter that was built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. A wide array of spring wildflowers and some of the largest trees in the park can be found in Hamilton Hollow.  This trail is marked with green arrows in a clockwise direction. The northern part of this trail is shared with Cuivre River Trail, on which equestrian use is allowed. The remaining sections of Hamilton Hollow trail are closed to horse traffic.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
.90 Mile 40 minutes Loop Green

Behind the stone picnic shelter

Lakeside Trail

  • Hiking

Length: 3.5 Miles View map

On this natural surface trail, you may experience rocks and roots, wooden steps and bridges, steep grades, occasional water over the trail and slippery conditions. Following the entire shoreline of Lincoln Lake, the trail is frequently used by fishermen, as well as by hikers.  During the summer, a good display of wildflowers can be found along the trail, especially the western and northeastern portions. Lakeside Trail is easy to follow and hike. A connecting spur from the Lake Shelter also allows access to this trail. Three sets of stairs also connect this trail to the campground.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail           
  • Wood or stone steps
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
  • Bridges and/or structural crossings
  • Occasional water over trail
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
3.5 Miles 2 hours, 40 minutes Loop Green

Boat launch; Swimming area; or Steps from the campground

Lone Spring Trail

  • Backpacking
  • Hiking

Length: 4.75 Miles View map

This trail consists of sections on the north and the south side of Highway KK. It is named for a perennially flowing spring that emerges in the valley at the base of a ridge. The northern park of the trail loops through Northwood’s Wild Area and crosses Big Sugar Creek, a designated state natural area. The southwestern part of the trail goes through an open woodland that is being restored to its original condition by the use of prescribed burns. This somewhat strenuous trail is marked in a clockwise direction. White connector 7 is available to shorten your trip. A connecting spur to the north allows the option to hike to Shady 80 Lake, and white connector 6 to the south provides access to Big Sugar Creek Trail. 

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail
  • Water/stream crossings without bridges
  • Road/highway crossing
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
4.75 Miles 3 hours, 30 minutes Loop Yellow

At Lincoln Hills Drive and Hwy. KK intersection

Mossy Hill Trail

  • Hiking

Length: .80 Mile View map

On this natural surface trail, you may experience rocks and roots and cross several wooden bridges. It has the same entrance and exit, and then splits to provide a half-mile loop. After following a wooded valley, the trail crosses Mossy Hill, an open woodland with luxuriant growths of mosses and lichen and several unique wildflowers. Mossy Hill Trail is an easy hiking trail and is signed in a clockwise direction.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail
  • Bridges and/or structural crossings
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
.80 Mile 35 minutes Loop Red

Full hookup side of the campground

Prairie Trail

  • Hiking

Length: .30 Mile View map

A leisure hike, this trail winds through the Sac Prairie, which is located about one-fourth mile south of Camp Sherwood Forest’s entrance road. Sac Prairie is only a small remnant, but this special area will give you a glimpse of the vast prairies that once covered more than a third of Missouri in pre-settlement times.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
.30 Mile 15 minutes Loop Brown

At Blazing Star Trail parking lot

Turkey Hollow Trail

  • Hiking

Length: .80 Mile View map

This trail is marked in a counterclockwise direction. On this natural surface trail, you may experience rocks and roots, steep grades and a wooden bridge. The first part of the trail passes through an old field before entering woodlands with many large oak trees. It then crosses a bridge over a small valley and loops around the point of a ridge before heading back toward the entrance. Turkey Hollow Trail is named for the wild turkeys that have frequently been seen in the area.

You may experience:

  • Natural surface, dirt, mud, gravel, shifting rocks, slippery surface, etc.
  • Rocks, roots and/or downed vegetation on trail
  • Steep grades and inclines more than 10 percent
  • Bridges and/or structural crossings
Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
.80 Mile 35 minutes Loop Black

At the small picnic area between the visitor center and Lake Lincoln

Old Schoolhouse Trail

  • Bicycling/Mountain Biking
  • Hiking

Length: 3.85 Miles

Old Schoolhouse Trail receives its name from the foundation of an early 1900s one-room schoolhouse that can be seen along the trail. The loop trail, which is suitable for mountain biking, provides a spectacular view of Lake Lincoln as it shares a path with Lakeside Trail. Along the way, the trail crosses several park roads, makes use of an old service road and passes through Camp Cuivre. 

Find the trailhead on the park map
Missouri State Parks Trail Rules and Etiquette
Length Estimated Hiking Time Type Blazes Trailhead
3.85 Miles 2 hours, 55 minutes Loop Red On Hardy Road between Highway 147 and Walker Road