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Access to several trails are within a day’s travel of West Plains! 

Points of Interest West Plains, Missouri


Located in the Angeline Conservation Area, this 1.2-mile loop trail is near Eminence, Missouri. Generally considered an easy route, it takes about a half-hour to complete unless you stop to take in the natural features which abound in the area.

67 miles From West Plains

Take Highway 63 north toward Willow Springs. Just before Willow Springs, take Highway 60 east toward Mountain View. Stay on Highway 60 for 34 miles. Turn left on Highway 19 at Winona toward Eminence. Stay on Highway 19 for 14.5 miles. Turn right onto County Road 19-205. Stay on 19-205 for 0.5 mile. Entrance to trail will be on your right.


The Cedar Gap Plateau is recognized as the second-highest point in Missouri. Headwaters of the Bryant Creek can be viewed at this conservation area along with limestone glades and oak/hickory forest. A gravel-surfaced trail leads from the parking lot to a valley overlook. This 0.5-mile trail can accommodate most hikers with some effort. For a more rugged hike, visitors can continue beyond the overlook and hike the 1.6-mile loop trail.

67 miles From West Plains

Take Highway 63 north toward Willow Springs. Stay left on 63 North and 60 west at junction. Continue on Highway 60 west at Cabool. Past Mansfield take exit ramp for O Highway. At the top of the ramp, turn left and cross the overpass. Stay on O Highway/Pantherholler for 1 mile. Cedar Gap Conservation Area entrance is on the right.


The Glade Top is mentioned here even though it is designated as a driving trail. It is a two-lane, all-weather gravel road which cuts through the Mark Twain National Forest and is Missouri’s only National Forest Scenic Byway. It follows narrow ridge tops which offer scenic views including at 7 overlook “pull-outs” which are especially beautiful in the fall. Along the way are opportunities for short walks. For those who are looking for an overnight or multi-day adventure, it can be treated as a point-to-point hike, with primitive camping possible on sites scattered along the route. Full information and map at:

68 miles From West Plains

Take US Highway 160 west toward Gainesville. Continue on 160 for 56 miles through Gainesville to Lutie. At Lutie, turn right onto Highway 95 and continue for 12 miles to the Glade Top east entrance which will be on your left. Travel 23 miles on the trail to Highway 125. Turn left (south) on 125 and continue for 4.5 miles to Rueter. Turn left at Rueter onto Highway 160 east to return to West Plains.


This 16.4-mile loop trail near Roby, Missouri in the Paddy Creek Wilderness area is generally considered a moderately challenging route. It takes an average of 6 and a half hours to complete. This is a popular trail for backpacking and hiking. It is open year-round and is beautiful to visit anytime.

74 miles From West Plains

Take Highway 63 north toward Cabool for 32 miles. At the first Cabool exit, turn right to stay on 63 toward Houston. In 18 miles turn left on Hwy 17 north. Stay on Hwy 17 for 24 miles. Turn right (east) on gravel Forest Road 274, and go about .6 miles to Big Piney Trail parking on your left.

Cave Spring Trail

Devil’s Well is an unusual “karst window” that was formed when the roof of a huge cavern, containing an underground lake, collapsed. The result was a large sinkhole, with an opening in the bottom through which you can view the lake. A 4.6-mile foot trail leads from Devil’s Well to Cave Spring on the Current River. By walking the trail, you can see where the water in Devil’s Well goes. It’s a moderately strenuous hike.

Cave Spring Trail

79 miles From West Plains

Take Highway 63 north toward Willow Springs. Just before Willow Springs, take Highway 60 east toward Mountain View. After Mountain View, turn left on Highway 17. Stay on Highway 17 for 13 miles to Summersville. At Summersvile, turn right on Highway 106. In 7 miles, stay straight to continue on D Highway. In 9 miles, turn left on Highway 19. In 17.5 miles, turn left on KK Highway. In 2 miles, turn left on Devil’s Well Road. Devil’s Well will be ahead in 2 miles.


There are 390 miles of trail within the Ozark Trail system which is well-maintained by a partnership of agencies and private organizations and can be hiked, mountain biked or ridden on horseback. A trail head just 8 miles north of West Plains gives access to the North Fork Section. Other nearby trail sections include: Current River, Upper Current River, Eleven Point, and Between the Rivers. Visit for complete information and see Trailhead distances on Ozark Trails section on page 75.