Dr. Edmund A. Babler Memorial State Park: Suburban Mushroom Heaven
Located 30 miles west of downtown St. Louis, Babler State Park is home to an impressive 2,400-acre old-growth forest ecosystem. Despite the park's proximity to the suburbs of the city, Babler offers a lovely network of trails and one of the better foraging opportunities in the area. If you are looking for a good leg stretcher, but can't commit to a day-long hike or one of our excursions, Babler is a wonderful option.
Centerpoint to Goat Trail: A View Worth the Hike
Four months ago, Eric and I took a weekend trip to Eureka Springs, Arkansas for one last hurrah just before his knee surgery. The surgery would leave him unable to walk for two months and unable to hike for even longer. We had our hearts set on the well-known Centerpoint to Goat Trail, a 5.9 mile out and back trail whose destination is a famously breathtaking view of the Buffalo River.
Big Spring, Blue Spring, and Falling Spring
While Eric was hiking on Memorial Day Weekend, I was spending some more relaxed time outdoors with my family. Although we have owned property near Ellington, MO for almost a year now, we have been so busy spending time on the property that this was one of our first forays into the surrounding community. We checked out three springs near Van Buren, MO: Big Spring, Blue Spring, and Falling Spring.
Three Creeks Conservation Area: A Columbia Favorite
Located just south of Columbia, Three Creeks Conservation Area offers a nice escape from the city without a long drive. Three Creeks is comparable to the nearby Rock Bridge State Park, but with the benefit of significantly fewer visitors. If you visit Three Creeks on a Monday after the weekend rush, you're liable to have the area to yourself. Despite the proximity to Columbia, MO, it is a beautiful natural area with an abundance of wildlife, unique stream ecosystems, and (our favorite) prime mushroom foraging areas.