Located in the St. Francois Mountains, Taum Sauk Mountain State Park stands above others – literally. The park’s namesake, Taum Sauk Mountain, rises to 1,772 feet above sea level, making it the highest point in Missouri. It is an easy walk from the parking lot to the highest point.
The moderately rugged Mina Sauk Falls loop trail takes visitors to the state’s tallest waterfall. In wet weather, Mina Sauk Falls drops 132 feet down a series of rocky volcanic ledges into a clear, rock-bottom pool at the base. In any weather, this trail offers spectacular views of the state’s deepest valley to the west, which has up to 700 feet of vertical relief between the creek and the tops of the mountains crowding in on all sides. Below, the crystal-clear Taum Sauk Creek flows the length of the park. With its undeveloped watershed, this creek has been recognized as a State Outstanding Resource Water for its aesthetic and scientific value.
This natural area had its origins 1.5 billion years ago as a landscape of volcanoes surrounded by a shallow sea. The dominant rocks strewn across this area are rhyolite, formed from magma that extruded onto the surface as a lava flow a long time ago.
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Taum Sauk Falls Trail (3 miles)
Ozark Trail (14.5 miles)
Location: 3 hrs 45 min northeast of Springfield
Amenities: Bathrooms, camping and picnic area
Pet Friendly: Yes
Kid Friendly: Yes
Best Time to Visit