Almost half of the 35-mile long Wappapello Lake Section of the Ozark Trail is managed by the Mark Twain National Forest – the balance of it is managed by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources State Parks and the US Army Corps of Engineers. Wappapello Lake was created in 1938 with the construction of a rolled earth fill dam to control flooding of the St. Francois River. The trail’s proximity to water lends itself to an abundance of waterfowl. A hike of any desired length is feasible o this section due to numerous trail access points, and connector trails. There are three primary trailheads, Sam A. Baker State Park on the north, Hwy. 172, and Hendrickson Recreation Area on the south end. Many portions of the trail are prone to flooding, making trail use during wet periods undesirable. The trail is open to hiking, mountain biking and equestrian use. A connector trail permits access to Lake Wappapello State Park.
A gap separates this trail from the Victory Section of the Ozark Trail.
There are no fees.
Leave No Trace: Pack out what you pack in; be prepared and minimize your impact. Avoid use of the trail during wet conditions.
From Fredericktown (north trailhead – Sam A. Baker State Park) - go south on U.S. Highway 67 for 28 miles and turn right on State Highway 34. Continue for 4 miles and the trailhead is on the right, or continue an additional .4 miles and turn right into the Sam A. Baker State Park. The spur trail at the park is located off the park road near the entrance at State Highway 143 on the south side.
From Greenville- Drive south on U.S. Highway 67 for 3.6 miles and the trailhead is located on the left. This trailhead is located near the grave of the Unknown Soldier.
From Poplar Bluff, MO, go north on Hwy 67 for 11 miles. Turn east after crossing the Black River onto Butler County Rd, 501 to FS 3046, at Hendrickson Recreation Area. OR - From Poplar Bluff, MO, go north on Hwy 67 for 13 miles. Turn east onto Hwy 172 and travel 1 mile to trailhead.
For additional information on the Ozark Trail, visit the Ozark Trail Assocation at Ozarktrail.com. For trail conditions visit Ozarktrail.com/conditions.php. Detailed Maps are available at the Planner section for download and/or view at Ozarktrail.com/planner/maps.php