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Forest 44 Conservation Area

Why did I not know about this wonderful place?  I’ve lived just a few minutes from this location near the intersection of I-44 and MO 141 for most of my life!  It’s not a park but a Conservation Area.  What’s the difference?  Not completely sure but their literature states that citizens can take berries, mushrooms, and other items from the CA while such things may not be removed from parks in Missouri.

The trails at this ‘park’ are mostly hilly and rocky.  The trails are limited to foot traffic, dogs on leash, and horses.  No bikes or other means of transport.  While you can hear the I-44 traffic from one or two of the trails, it’s not distracting.  There is plenty of horse poop to step around and some small streams to cross.  The signage is not terribly informative and can be a bit misleading.  But, there is a nice variety of trails here and I think we’ll spend the rest of this year exploring all of them.

Forest 44 CA abuts the Beaumont Scout area and a shooting range and is across I-44 from Lone Elk Park and Tyson Research Park.  There are also two commercial stables whose horses and riders use this CA.  I am a bit familiar with horses so I know to yield to them, especially when my dog is present.  One does not want to spook a horse and my dog thinks they are really big dogs who should want to play with her.  Nothing doin’!

I debated even mentioning this location with my readers as it’s quite a gem and I like the idea that it is mostly undiscovered.  But, this is not the front page of the NY Times!  We can all keep a secret, right?  If you want to explore a local treasure, check out this place.  I can’t wait to discover every inch of it.