Going camping this summer? Here’s a few campgrounds to try out

April is finally here. With that comes the opening of many seasonal campgrounds in Missouri.

The memories I have made with my daughter on camping trips are priceless, yet I have had so many people inquire about this pastime with great confusion.

I’ve heard it all. People have complained to me that it sounds like a lot of work, while others ask me how I can manage to do this as a single mom without a man to pitch the tent and build the fire.

However, my favorite line is this: “I camp in hotels.”

Ultimately, I believe that not taking the time and effort to expose children to the great outdoors is detrimental to their development.

Camping teaches children many great lessons ranging from patience to an appreciation of the world around them. It’s an experience that excites the senses in ways that no hotel room could ever achieve.

Maybe you’re not sure where to start. If you are like me and use Google religiously, it can be overwhelming.

When searching “Missouri Campgrounds” Google came up with 603,000 results in .74 seconds.

For now, let’s narrow it down to four that we have had success with!

I am going to start with two that will require you to “rough it” a bit. In other words, there are no showers or flush toilets, but the proximity to beautiful, crystal-clear creeks will totally make up for the lack of modern conveniences.

First is Marble Creek Campground in the Mark Twain National Forest. It’s off Highway E, located south of Arcadia. The creek is simply stunning.

Michelle Turner

Karlene and I have camped right by the creek with easy access from our site. The Taum Sauk Marble found throughout this area is beautiful, too.

But, the thing that captivated us the most was the amazing view of the stars. The light pollution where we live does not allow us such a grand night view.

Paddy Creek Recreation Area is also located in the Mark Twain National Forest. I know this place well, because I also have wonderful childhood memories of Paddy Creek.

It’s a place that my grandmother has mentioned from her youth as well. I knew as soon as my own child could walk, it was important that she had similar experiences.

Taking her camping at Paddy Creek remains a highlight for both of us. This area is located between Licking and Roby. Take Slabtown Road to Paddy Creek Road. Be prepared for a pretty steep hill, but at the bottom you’ll find this little oasis! 

While both Paddy Creek and Marble Creek are amazing finds, I do know some of you will not be comfortable unless you have more amenities, in other words: plumbing.

A lot of pain, limited mobility; even viagra prices in usa breathing makes it hurt more. Living with order generic levitra why not try here Erectile Dysfunction Impotence condition causes strain on a couple. The advantage of enjoying the product is one can indulge in ecstasy and lust for a good period of 4 to 5 hours with assurance of no issues unless there is overdose of buy viagra tablets the component more than once in a single day. One of the biggest hurdles that teenage drivers must 100mg viagra online overcome is developing a serious attitude toward driving, which will be reflected in their driving skills. Never fear, here are two other kid-friendly places to consider.

Onondaga State Park has all the comforts of home for campers, even Wi-Fi. It’s located on the Meramec River. It is also just a hop, skip, and a jump away from the Huzzah Conservation Area.

I prefer to wade there with my daughter because it’s a lot more shallow and predictable than the Meramec.

Onondaga also is well known for their cave. I have toured this cave more times than I can count and it’s never gotten old.

Here’s a tip: weekends in the summer get a bit loud, especially with several large private campgrounds within yelling distance.

During peak season, you may want to consider camping on a weekday. I have learned this the hard way.

Onondaga is located near Leasburg. Take the Highway H exit from I-44 and it’ll take you through Leasburg to the park. 

Last but not least, I highly recommend Crystal Creek Ranch located near Alley Spring in Eminence. This privately-owned ranch is one of the most unique experiences we have had.

We had originally planned to camp in our tent, but since the rains kept coming and going, we opted for one of their “unique lodging experiences” listed on their website.

The 12×12 Russ Noah log cabin was our home for three nights on the grounds. We walked to the shower house and bathrooms.

Our “site” had a fire ring with a picnic table. It was almost just like we were in a tent, but the cabin kept us dry when the rains came nearly every night we were there.

Being able to help feed the rabbits, collect eggs, and make S’mores at our campfire were highlights for my daughter. For more information, visit their website at https://www.crystalcreekranch.com.

These are just four suggestions. I am sure if you ask around you’ll discover even more. Yet, there comes a time to just pick one and go for it. 

Even if you just stay two days and one night, you will be creating a lifetime of memories for a child. Camping with kids is messy, it is work, but it is also priceless.

Parents and grandparents out there, remember childhood is a time you can never get back so spend it well.

I wish you the best in your camping endeavors.

Now go make some memories!


(Michelle Turner lives in Union, Mo.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *