Tuesday, March 20

Pickle Springs Loop Trail

Continuing with this series,"Adventures with Uncle Bob-Guide to Self-Adventure", we feature this Missouri Dept of Conservation trail. It is reproduced here as it disappeared from a previous website. Directions: From Chester,ill cross the bridge and go about 5 miles to county H, and follow this until it ends at St Mary. Turn left, and go to county Z. Follow to I-55 and go north to Rt 32. Follow this approx 15 miles and you see the brown conservation area sign. Turn left and follow to the parking lot. Alternatively, for a scenic view,get off I-55 at Ozora exit, take N to P, then north on B to rt 32. This will take you over scenic ridgetops and the winery in the cave.

Coming out of the parking lot, we have a 2 mile loop junction: let's go left. Soon we come to a unique cliff area with a double buttress arches, the keyhole, and the slot. Our arches picture has been moved to http://www.naturalarches.org( click GIS for any state). The trail is up and down but not steep. We encounter waterfalls, rock shelters, and strange rock formations. Near the end, we are up on high rock cedar glade overlooking the valley and back to the parking lot. GPS coordinatesare N 37.7959 and W -90.2668. Make a day out of this outing by visiting nearby Hickory Canyon Conservation area and Hawn State Park. The winery requires that visitors buy one bottle of wine for every 5 people in a group in order to enter the cave( lighted and tables). More info from Bob Tyson at 618-684-5643 or robkay43@webtv.net.

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