Camping And Floating In Missouri – A Match Made In Nature
Getting back to nature is a great way to recharge your batteries and get ready for the work grind. The problem is with all the different options available it is hard to figure out what the best way to connect. One of the best ways we have found is to plan a camping and floating in Missouri trip. This type of vacation combines several different amazing things into one, but it is definitely worth the adventure.
Why Combine Camping And Floating In Missouri
While it may seem like it would definitely put a lot of pressure on an outing, which it can, combining these two activities with the proper planning is very rewarding. While you are camping, outside of sitting around the fire, enjoying the nature hikes, or other activities a campground offers is usually all you can do.
Well, taking the camping and finding a local outfitter for the floating trip allows you to enjoy two things and have a great day planned out. Now, you could start to argue that having the floating trip does not make sense because it is completely different than a camping trip, which I would agree to a point. However, what you need to realize is typically outfitting companies are close by the campgrounds.
Since the proximity of the outfitters tends to be close to the campgrounds it does not take you long to reach the company. At the same time, though, once you return to the location that the outfitters are based out of, it is a quick drive back to the camper so you can change back into dry clothes or if the campground has a hot shower house be able to get cleaned up and warmed up from the cooler river water.
What Equipment Do You Need For Floating In Missouri
Typically the equipment you need is provided by the outfitters. While it may seem tempting to float on your own and it is possible, I would recommend using a proper outfitter to help you out and definitely if you have never been on a floating excursion before. When you do use an outfitter they tend to provide all the necessary equipment and the guides often know the local and state laws regarding the waterways. Not to mention, the guides tend to know all the features that you would want to check out on the way and sometimes know where you can stop at to enjoy a lunch, drinks, bathrooms, but also just to relax around nature.
Where Should You Go Floating In Missouri
This is a great question and definitely one you should get the proper answer to. I know for a fact the state has plenty of options for an enjoyable floating trip, but what is even better is the diversity in the locations you can float in. To help out in narrowing down the list of floating rivers in Missouri and other locations to float in, I have come out with my amazing list of locations that I love and that definitely will help you in finding the best combination trip to enjoy.
The Meramec River definitely is a great location and meanders thru some very idyllic scenery you are sure to enjoy. What else is great about the location is the state parks that are close by that offer you some amazing camping stops. Some of the scenery will make you think you have left Missouri, but I can assure you that you did not leave the state, it is just the fact that this river has such a wide diversity of scenery that it is very easy to get lost in the amazing beauty of the region.
The Elk River is a nice location, but it is also a location that has plenty of camping options along the banks as well. What else is great about the river is the flow is not that strong and that allows for some nice relaxation while floating down the river. Now, if you want to stop and the outfitters do not mind, the river is one that has quite a large population of bass and that makes it easier for you to catch your dinner for the campsite later on.
Big Piney River
Fishing is a prime option when you float on the Big Piney River. The river is home to the blue strip darter fish, which is a fairly rare fish to see but is definitely a beautiful fish. What else is great about the river is the chance to see some of the beautiful bluffs that are lining the river and definitely going to provide you with a great view that you never imagined while floating. If you are a nature lover, one thing you may find while floating here will be wild turkeys, they are known to show up at times! Depending on your level of adventure and how wet you want to get, there are swimming spots that are amazing along the river as well and often secluded.
When you want a river that is great for relaxing on, then you need to check out the Gasconade River. The river, for the most part, has some very impressive scenery, but it also has some spots that will require you to be alert as it can get a little quick. The best part is when you are on this river, you do have the chance to find a lot of camping spots and hiking locations as well. That is because this river is in the Mark Twain National Forest, which is amazing in its own right. However, floating down the river allows you to have a unique view of the forest.
Not all the rivers allow you to get fully down the waterway and that is the case here. The Black River has some sections that you cannot bring a boat or float down, but those spots if they are not rapids are great for swimming. The Black River is a great location for spotting wildlife along the banks of the river has some sandy spot that definitely allows you to see a variety of wildlife.
What Kind Of Laws Are Involved With Floating
Missouri is a very popular state for floating with the number of rivers in the state. However, because of this popularity the state did have to come out with some laws specific to floating and one of those is the outfitter is not responsible or liable for the injury or death of any part of the paddle sports which is floating.
You also have laws that actually make quite a bit of sense and are meant for your safety as well as the safety of the waterways as well. A couple of big ones that you need to follow and are very important for your safety is no illegal drug use or alcohol for underage individuals. Something else that is for your own safety is that everyone on the trip must have a personal floatation device and you cannot use these to tie any canoes or rafts together.
As a safety feature for the waterways, it is important to not liter in the rivers. You cannot use glass containers either, which is a nice feature and definitely keeps the river safer. What else you need to follow is no trespassing on any of the land that you go floating by. Yes, the waterways are public, but the land surrounding them is not always public and trespassing is still not allowed.
Missouri is the Show-Me state and once I started to explore the camping and floating in Missouri it was easy to see why. The state has a wide variety of rivers to float down and most of those rivers meander through the parks and this allows for camping or hiking. What else is great is the state has plenty of outfitters who make it easier for you to go floating and enjoy your trip to Missouri more than what you ever imagined. Just remember have a great vacation and know that camping and floating in Missouri is just one of the many things you can do in the great outdoors.