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 BUSCH WILDLIFE

AND

WELDON SPRING NATURAL AREA TRAILS

 

 Copyright 1992, by Bob Soetebier

 

     Busch Wildlife Conservation Area is administered by the Missouri

Dept. of Conservation.  To get to Busch Wildlife, head west on Hwy. 40

across the Missouri River and go s.w. on Hwy. 94.  After about 1/4- to

1/2-mile, go n.w. on Hwy. D for a 1/2- to 1-mile, then turn right into

the main entrance for Busch Wildlife.  Go less than 1/10th of a mile

on the paved entrance road and park at the picnic area on your right.

 

   Just to the left of the picnic area parking, along the tree line is

a small building.  In the entrance alcove of this building you'll find

all sorts of free literature.  Pick up the ones for the 3/4-mile

self-guided nature trail (which begins just to the right of where you

parked at the picnic area along the tree line...) and also the

brochure of for the Weldon Spring Wildlife Area. --- There are also

water/bathrooms and a concession building across the parking lot where

you got the free brochures.--- Be sure to check out the self-guided

nature trail before you leave.

 

     If you're up to the challenge of some hills -- it is well worth

it for the scenery! -- then go back on Hwy. D to Hwy. 94.  Go right

(away from Hwy. 40) on Hwy 94, driving past the school and the old

Weldon Spring TNT/Nuclear Waste Site on your right.  Go for about

3/4-mile or so, watching for the Weldon Springs Hiking Trailhead

Parking on your left.

 

   From the trailhead you can hike your choice of either a 5.3-mile

loop or 8.4-mile loop trail.  (The longer trail follows much of the

shorter trail, too.)  On the 5.3-mile loop you'll have a half-dozen

climbs, along with at least three great blufftop/edge overlooks of the

immediately above the bluff-base Missouri River KATY Bicycling/Hiking

Trail and the MO River valley.  (You'll have quite a few more climbs

along with more views on the longer trail.)  Be sure to bring your

binoculars and allow enough extra time to linger at the views.

 

   You can easily see Chesterfield Mall and the Double Tree Hotel to

the n.e. far across the river up atop the hills, and the Union

Electric Labadie Plant (the three tall smokestacks in the distance

upriver to the s.w.)  Also along the trail, you'll pass through many

different kinds of terrain, including a peaceful pine forest, hardwood

forest and creek bottoms, and even a small abandoned rock quarry (good

fossil hunting here!)

 

   With either trail, be sure to watch carefully while walking for

your first turn off the beginning road.  The trail will go to your

right off an old paved road onto an old dirt road within the first

hundred yards or so.  Also, the trail will later go off to the right

from the dirt road.  Just watch carefully for the painted arrow

markers wherever there is a trail intersection and you'll do fine. ---

There is a trail map posted at the the trailhead; but, I'd still

recommmend picking up one of those free brochure I mentioned earlier

to have along for reference with the detailed topographic map guide.

 

[NOTE:  Underlined items in trip account link to additional related info about the points of interest.]