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Rock Bridge State Park at Columbia

Rock Bridge State Park

5901 South Highway 163 , Columbia, Missouri, 65203-8195
Category: Activities
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Rock Bridge Memorial and Katy Trail State Parks

Columbia is close to two amazing Missouri state parks.  Rock Bridge Memorial State Park offers loads of recreational activities including hiking and off-trail exploration.    Rock Bridge is one of only a few state parks in which off-trail exploration is both allowed and encouraged.  Katy Trail State Park stretched through several counties and communities, from Clinton in the west to Machens in the east.   Running along the Missouri River along an old railroad line and is popular for cycling, hiking, and horseback riding.
 

Details

Hours -

Sunrise to sunset
 

Prices -

$5 for orienteering packet at Rock Bridge.
 

Winter Tip -

Cross-country skiing is a popular winter activity at Rock Bridge. High Ridge and Grassland trails are both good choices.
 

Activities

  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Horseback riding
  • Orienteering
  • Picnicking
 

Orienteering Activities

When it comes to exploring the great outdoors, orienteering is a good skill to learn, plus it’s a lot of fun. All you’ll need is a compass, topographical map, some good hiking boots, water, and snacks. (Sunscreen and a first aid kit wouldn’t hurt, either). In Rock Bridge Memorial State Park, there are 30 orienteering markers, numbered 11 to 40. You can purchase an orienteering packet at the Park Office, open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., for $5. Call 573-449-7402 for more information.

Rails to Trails

The 240-mile trail of Katy Trail State Park is built on a former railroad corridor of the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad, also known as the MKT or “Katy” line. The trail, popular with hikers, bikers, and horseback riders, stretches through central Missouri from border to border. The trail closely follows the Missouri River on one side and the landscape changes on the other. It includes towering bluffs, wetlands, forests, and pastures. The Katy is popular for day trips or some folks take days to cover it from end to end. For more information, call 1-800-334-6946.

FAQs

  • Are there interpretive programs in the Rock Bridge Park?

    Rock Bridge Memorial Park offers several educational programs including group tours (scheduled in advance) of Connor’s Cave. The Cave is about 150 feet long with a stream flowing through it. In the summer, docents will offer information at the Devil’s Icebox/Connor’s Cave entrance to answer questions. They also provide some flashlights and helmets. Tours take about 15 minutes.
  • Does Katy Trail have any special designations?

    Katy Trail State Park boasts several distinctions. In 2007, it was named to the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame. A segment of the Trail from Machens to Boonville is also a part of the official Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail. From St. Charles to Boonville, 158 miles is part of the American Discovery Trail, which links hiking trails in the U.S. from coast to coast. Katy Trail was also designated a Millennium Legacy Trail by First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton in 1999.

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Map/Directions

Driving Direction to Rock Bridge State Park
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