Mark Twain National Forest
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  • Ava/Cassville/Willow Springs

    Ava-Cassville-Willow Springs Ranger District

    Route 6, Box 614110 (mailing)

    1103 South Jefferson (physical)

    Ava, Missouri 65608

    (417) 683-4428


    Recreation abounds on the Ava/Cassville/Willow Springs (ACW) Ranger District. Whether you are looking to camp, hike, fish, hunt, or ride, you can find it here. The ACW encompasses several areas in the south and southeast of Missouri.

    Visitors to ACW will find different landscapes from oak-hickory forests, shortleaf pine forests, and glades. Glades are open areas of native tall prairie grasses characterized by dry, shallow soils and limestone outcroppings.

    The unique blending of eastern forest and western desert habitats makes a home for such varied wildlife as the bald eagle and the roadrunner, armadillos and wild turkey, white-tailed deer and black bears.

    The sunlit balds and deep hollows, narrow ridgetops and steep slopes, secluded pastures and clear streams characteristic of the Ozarks are the trademark of the District. This is the landscape so eloquently described in Harold Bell Wright's famous book, The Shepherd of the Hills.

    Nearby vacation destinations -- Branson, Silver Dollar City, Springfield, and Table Rock Lake -- make the District one of Missouri's favorite playgrounds.

    If you drive through this area, you will be delighted at every turn by scenic views. Hike your way through the Forest and you will find solitude and tranquility.

    The beautiful North Fork River is the pride of Willow Springs Area. A total of nine major springs flow into the river; two of the largest, Big Springs and Blue Spring, contribute some 18 million gallons of cold, clear water every day. The river is popular with canoeists as well as anglers.

    The District contains three of seven Congressionally-designated Wilderness Areas; Devils Backbone, Hercules Glades, and Piney Creek Wildernesses.

    The District has the Forest’s only National Forest Scenic Byways; Blue Buck Knob, Glade Top Trail; and Sugar Camp.

    Need directions to our office?

    Maps for the ACW

    Linked below are

    • Motor Vehicle Use Maps (MVUMs) for each unit of the ACW Ranger District, and
    • An overview map of the names for topgraphic quadrant (quad) maps for this area in case you need to stop by an office to purchase a quad map
    • Forest Service has placed MVUM map on the Avenza Maps site for Free Download but you need to have the Avenza APP installed on your system to view the Map