I thought I would explore some of the many hiking trails around my local area of Missouri and Kansas. I figure this will serve two purposes for one it will give me a chance to do some nature photography, and second, it will force me to go out and get some exercise. So it’s a win/win. This week is a hiking trail that is just outside of my former workplace at Unity Village, Missouri.
The trail is a two-mile circle, with about a half mile lead up trail. The trail goes through a mostly wooded area so seeing rabbitts, deer, skunks and brown hawks is almost a certainty.
One thing that makes the trail unique is a natural bridge that is located on a short side trail. The natural bridge is the only one of its kind and was reportedly a hideout for Jesse James whose family had a farm near here.
The Railroad runs near the trail and the area was a “hobo hangout” in the 1930’s and 40’s while the railroad was being built and many of the rocks have carvings and use symbols that only other hobos knew. There is an area called Hobo Rock’s where these carvings could be seen.
The trail also features access to one of the two lakes on the property. The lake is open for fishing and is stocked each season.
The only drawback is leading up to the lake is a very steep hill. I walked this trail a lot this last summer and eventually by September I could make it to the top without taking a break to catch my breath. I felt like that was a real accomplishment. Since it is a circular trail if you go to your right when you come upon the circle, you can avoid going up the hill.
These are two shots of the first and second part of the hill. The grade is particularly steep on the last several hundred feet before the top.
There are some Pros and Cons to this trail.
The Pros are it is a fairly short trail roughly 2.5 miles in total. It is a circle so you don’t have to double back. The countryside is very nice and it is so near town that you don’t have to drive far to get to it.
The Cons are THE HILL! and also it isn’t paved but a gravel trail so biking would be difficult without a mountain bike. No wifi access.
Overall, it’s a nice trail for beginners or casual walking/hiking.