It's a Capital Idea
This trail is the longest of the five and winds past savanna, prairie, marsh and woodland habitats. You can enjoy a grand vista of the entire Runge area atop a fire tower located near the beginning of the trail.
Bluestem Ridge is a trail of intermediate length and difficulty. It winds along the edge of the prairie and then dives into a woodland habitat. In spring, a trip along Bluestem Ridge will likely reward you with the resonant sounds of spring peepers and chorus frogs as they try to attract mates.
Moss Rock Trace will calm your anxieties with its shady feel and the sounds of water trickling through a wet-weather stream. Look for bluebells, spicebush and pawpaw trees as you cross the 180-foot boardwalk. Continue through a small glade, which is home to numerous wildflowers, including Indian paintbrush, coreopsis, coneflowers and blazing stars.
Stepping onto Towering Oak Trail brings a sense of timelessness as you discover 200-year-old white oak trees. On your Towering Oak venture you will cross several wooden bridges and trek under a canopy of oak, hickory, walnut and other spectacular trees of Missouri.
Along the Naturescape Trail you will find several examples of backyard wildlife habitat, such as a decked area with planters, a rock garden, a wildflower meadow and a garden pond. This trail is the shortest and easiest trail and is accessible to people in wheelchairs.
In addition to the building, facilities, exhibits and trails, Runge Nature Center also offers a variety of special events and activities for people of all ages. The staff often travels to community events and sets up activities for children, as well as educational exhibits for all ages. Teachers and civic leaders can contact the nature center to schedule interpretive programs for their groups. During the summer and winter, nature center programs travel to schools or other locations for people who are unable to visit the center. Special general public programs are scheduled continually throughout the year.
Since its grand opening on July 10, 1993, Runge Conservation Nature Center staff have worked hard to find new and innovative ways to connect Missourians with the outdoors.
Interpretive programs such as Frog Frenzy, AcroBats, and Reptile Rap help children have fun as they develop a healthy understanding of Missouri's natural resources. Special events such as Naturescape Symposium, Eagle Days, and Haunted Habitats provide exciting adventures for people of all ages. General public programs focus on everything from otters,