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Mark Twain National Forest, which is Missouri’s only National Forest, was designated in 1976. It is 1, 506,100 acres in size and lies in the Ozark Plateau. Rolla, MO, is located about an hour’s drive away while Park Hills is approximately 26 miles away.
Mark Twain National Forest spreads to 29 counties in Southern and Central Missouri. The forest was named in honor of Mark Twain, who was a prolific writer and humorist in the state of Missouri. Visitors interested in exploring this expansive hardwood forest will find plenty of attractions, including rivers, caves, lakes, and boulders. One of the most notable features in Mark Twain National Forest is the beautiful Eleven Point Scenic River, which meanders through the forest.
For convenience, Mark Twain National Forest is divided into nine main areas referred to as districts. There are seven wilderness areas within the forest. This natural treasure is a popular destination for outdoor recreation. It offers myriad activities, including canoeing, swimming, boating, and fishing. Book an RV in Park Hills and enjoy land activities such as hiking, birding, and horseback riding, wildlife watching, and backpacking.
For outdoor lovers looking for a trail adventure during their RV rental vacation, they need to look no further. With over 700 miles of trails weaving through the Mark Twain National Forest, both beginners and advanced hikers are assured of getting a perfect trail to match their skills. One of the most popular trails is a 35-mile stretch of the 200-mile Ozark Trail System that snakes through the park. Other trails include the 36-mile Cedar Creek Trail, White Creek Trail and Lower Rock Creek/Cathedral Canyon Trail.
For hunters, Mark Twain National Forest plays host to many game species. Deer, coyotes, squirrels, and foxes are some animals that can be hunted. Hunting of birds such as doves, turkey, woodcock, and ducks is allowed.
With so many rivers and lakes dotting the national forest canoeing is a popular pastime here. Canoeing at the Eleven Point Scenic River is a great way of absorbing the scenery. There are other float-in river camps such as the Float Camp Recreational Area that attracts a lot of canoeists to the forest.
There are over 20 campgrounds within Mark Twain National Forest, where campers can park their travel trailer rentals. Most of the campgrounds are primitive, with just a few offering electric hookups. In the eastern region of the forest lies Cobb Ridge Campground. It has 41 sites spread across five loops. Only 24 of the total sites offer electric hookups. Hot showers are available.
Float Camp offers 19 sites. Eight campsites offer electric hookups. Each site is fitted with a grill and a picnic table. North Fork Tree Loops is an electric-only hookups campground suitable for smaller motorhome rentals.
There are plenty of recreational activities in the region surrounding Mark Twain National Forest. From museums, fun parks, historic sites to zoos, this area is an outdoor lover's playground. If you are looking for something fun to do with kids, you can head over to The Fugitive Beach with your travel trailer rental. Sprawling over 25 acres, this is an abandoned quarry turned into a beautiful water park. Located about 35 miles away, there are many family-friendly activities offered here. They include water slides, a variety of games, and swimming.
Should you be interested in museums to explore with your Rolla motorhome rental, Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site is a great choice. Previously known as Fort Davidson State Historic Site, this small museum is located in Arcadia Valley just 10 miles away. There are many civil war artifacts and pictures on display.
Animal lovers will want to plan a visit to Critter Lane Petting Zoo in Valles Maine during their RV rental trip. Located about 40 miles away, this 10-acre Zoo is home to over 300 animals. Sheep, donkeys, camels, and goats are some of the domestic animals found here. When you walk around Critter Lane Petting Zoo, the chances are good that you’ll spot other animals such as kangaroo, antelope, okapi, iguana, deer, and Oryx. Besides petting animals, kids can have fun at the bouncy house. Visitors can enjoy pony and camel rides.
Located in Stanton, Wild Adventures is another lovely zoo you can check out when you rent an RV near Rolla. Should you love marine animals, Wild Adventures is a nice place to see the sea urchins, stingrays, lionfish, and sharks. For big cat lovers, this zoo is home to lions, wolves, foxes, and tigers. Crocodiles, porcupines, parrots, alligators, snakes, and llamas are some of the animals found here.