Mark Twain National Forest

Photograph of Gary Allman at the Pineview Trailhead, Piney Creek Wilderness, Missouri, USA. July 2023.

Trip over — Three nights and four days by the lake. I left a day early as I didn’t fancy hiking out in the 90°F+ temps forecast for Monday. +1

Sunset at Piney Creek Wilderness. My neighbors are fishing the small bluff opposite their camp.

Camped near Table Rock Lake at Piney Creek Wilderness. The forecast was for two to three days of rain, so I carried in a second tarp to have a dry area to sit and prepare meals. It sprinkled once for about half an hour. +1

Table Rock Lake at Piney Creek Wilderness — I never tire of this view or taking pictures of it. Look closely; you can see that I had neighbors on this visit. Two fishermen camped at the entrance to Piney Creek. +2

On the lake trail at Piney Creek Wilderness. It doesn’t look it, but that’s a 60-80 ft. climb.

Ready for the trail. Or, judging by the reflection in my sunglasses: “Car, dunny (a.k.a. vault toilet), arm and camera.” I’m planning on spending four nights and five days at my favorite camping spot by Table Rock Lake.

State Highway CC Trailhead, Mark Twain National Forest, Missouri. +2

Another view of the North Fork River – I took this picture because it seemed to be pretty much where I took a picture the last time I hiked this trail. +1

The trail here is not for the faint-hearted – Not only is the drop-off steep but so is the trail. It drops 300ft in three-tenths of a mile. I don’t think I’d like to hike this trail clockwise and have to climb up it.

Selfie on the bluffs overlooking the North Fork River – Being so high up, I checked for cell service, and immediately received some messages on WhatsApp from my daughter-in-law in the UK. So I took a quick selfie to show the folks where I was. I still forget to look at the darned lens when I’m taking a selfie with my phone.

The forecast lied … Not only did it rain overnight, but the temperature was a lot lower than the forecast at 30℉.

Camped near the Ridge Runner / Ozark Trail – I last camped near here in May 2021 on my first hike of the North Fork loop of the Ridge Runner Trail. Then the leaves were out, it was warm, and I deliberately missed a large section of the trail in order to explore Steam Mill Hollow. Two-minute read, +3

Back to the start and some notes – From here there is just a short thirty-minute hike, south, down the Ozark Trail to get back to the trailhead. That’s it, trip over, though there’s still the two-hour drive home to complete.

Ready for the trail – Don’t come to me for outdoor fashion guidance. I hike to my own tune!

The view from my chair – Stereo image.

And very tall trees too.

Trees, trees, and more trees.

Lunch break, and I’m showing a bit too much thigh – I had a choice of routes to take today. The short route takes the North Fork Loop east back to the Ozark Trail, where I could get back to the trailhead. The longer route goes south, and into the Devil’s Backbone Wilderness, and returns to Highway CC via the McGarr Ridge Trail. One-minute read

Day Three – Back on the North Fork Loop Trail

Nothing but trees – Camped in Mark Twain National Forest, it was a wonderful morning in a rejuvenating spot.


Hammock Camping. +2

Stereo Image – Just Trees – It’s difficult to see the trees for the woods in a normal forest photograph, you need your full 3D vision to be able to separate things.

Eight O’Clock and I’m finally camped for the night

Glimpse – A glimpse of the sky, and the river can just be seen through the leaves. +2

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