Sometimes living in the big city can start to feel cramped and stuffy, leading you to want to get out into the great outdoors to get a big breath of fresh air. There are so many great nature spots to find across the state of Missouri, but finding the best-hidden gems is key for having the best day out. This waterfall nature spot near St. Louis is the perfect place to explore the next time you get that wanderlust bug.

Hickory Canyons in Ste. Genevieve County is a serene spot filled with unique geographical features along with incredible wildlife and rare to find plants.

The natural area has plenty of glacial relicts, such as hay-scented fern and winterberry, that survived in the area since the Ice Age, over 12,000 years ago.

The rocky cliffs and waterfalls are built up of Lamotte sandstone. This sandstone was created from an ocean that existed in the area roughly 500 million years ago!

When planning to visit the area, you might want to plan to stop by after it was raining, since the biggest waterfall will be at its peak of flowing water. You can find the giant stone waterfall at the end of one of the hiking trails that lies to the east of the road.

Exploring the Hickory Canyons is truly a treat for the senses. You will breathe in the freshness of the air while enjoying the sights and sounds of the lush, green forest. The rushing waterfall and variety of trees will leave you in awe.

Strap on those hiking boots and get excited to find all there is to discover on the area's two hiking trails. Both treks offer beautiful views unlike any other. Admire the creeks of rainwater and sleek canyons on either hike you take.

One of the trails is a quarter-mile long that takes you to a steep-walled box canyon. The other trek is one mile long and takes you through the stunning sandstone forest. 

Hickory Canyons Nature Area is open from sunrise to sunset every single day of the year so you can visit anytime.

Hickory Canyons

Price: Free

Address: Ste. Genevieve, MO

Why You Need To Go: You can find giant waterfalls, beautiful lush greenery and stunning sandstone canyons across multiple fun trails.


We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.



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