Spring Creek Gap Conservation Area is in Maries County, approximately 10 miles southeast of Vienna and 14 miles north of Rolla on old Highway 63. This 1,816-acre area was acquired in three parts, starting with the 1948 purchase of a 280-acre parcel known as the Vichy Towersite. The Conservation Department purchased an additional 1,495 acres in 1978 from Dr. A.W. Strickle and added a 40-acre tract in 1980.
Spring Creek Gap, with its combination of forests, woodlands, steep topography, dolomite glades and old fields, is an extremely scenic area, especially during the fall color change. The forest has a nice display of spring wildflowers in the ravines. Cedar Creek, an intermittent stream, bisects the area.
In 1982, 40 acres on Spring Creek Gap Conservation Area was designated Natural Area and in 2007 the Natural Area was expanded to 692 acres and named Spring Creek Gap Glades Natural Area. Yellow coneflowers, silky asters and blazing stars are some of the colorful plants growing on the natural area. The majority of the forest is made up of oak and hickory in dry dolomite woodlands. White and black oak predominate on rich north and east slopes of the area, and post oak, chinquapin oak, blackjack oak, and eastern red cedar mark woodlands and glades. A planting of shortleaf pine may be seen along old Highway 63.
The area features numerous glades, ranging in size from less than one acre to over 10 acres. The natural openings, which occur on low quality soil, harbor remnant prairie plants and provide forage for wildlife.
Long term management efforts include opening up overgrown glades and woodlands which will increase the acreage of and diversity of prairie plants. During your visit to the area, you may view various natural resource management practices designed to improve wildlife habitat, maintain watershed quality, restore natural communities, and enhance tree growth and species composition. Watch the areas that have been disturbed as they revegetate through the years. You will find some sites becoming more open with greater ground flora and some better timber quality developing.
Wildlife habitat management practices include the creation of watering ponds; shallow water developments which will provide habitat for reptiles and amphibians and woodland thinning followed by prescribed burning to open up the woodland canopy.
- Sunday, 04:00 AM - 10:00 PM
- Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, 04:00 AM - 10:00 PM
From Vienna, take Highway 63 south approximately 10 miles, or north of Rolla on Highway 63 approximately 14 miles, take Old 63 north about 0.25 mile to the area.
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 105 Title; Authority
Chapter 11 of the Wildlife Code applies to this area. The information provided reflects regulations for most activities on this conservation area but does not contain regulations for all possible uses. For more information on area regulations consult the Wildlife Code or call the phone number listed for the area in the area details section.
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 110 General Provisions
Unless specifically authorized, the following activities are prohibited: swimming, sailboarding, skateboarding, entry on areas closed to the public, removal of water, rock collecting, planting, ranging of horses and other livestock, caving, rock climbing, rappelling, paint-balling, scuba diving, water skiing, and fires outside of designated camping areas.
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 115 Closings
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 135 Wild Plants, Plant Products, and Mushrooms
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 130 Vehicles, Bicycles, Horses, and Horseback Riding
Unless otherwise posted, bicycles are allowed on roads open to vehicular traffic. Bicycles must stay on roads open to vehicular traffic or on multi-use trails posted as open to bicycles. Groups of 10 or more people using bicycles on a department area must obtain a special use permit from the area manager. The area manager can be contacted at the phone number listed in the area details section for this department area.
Equestrian use is allowed on roads open to vehicular traffic. Horses must stay on roads open to vehicular traffic or on multi-use trails posted as open to horses. Groups of 10 or more people using horses on a department area must obtain a special use permit from the area manager. The area manager can be contacted at the phone number listed in the area details section for this department area.
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 140 Camping
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 150 Target Shooting and Shooting Ranges
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 120 Pets and Hunting Dogs
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 180 Hunting, General Provisions and Seasons
Hunting is prohibited on some conservation areas, but allowed on others. Special regulations may apply to hunting. To determine the hunting regulations for this conservation area, consult the Missouri Code of State Regulations in Chapter 11 of the Wildlife Code at https://www.sos.mo.gov/cmsimages/adrules/csr/current/3csr/3c10-11.pdf.
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 145 Tree Stands
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 155 Decoys and Blinds
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 125 Field Trials
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 200 Fishing, General Provisions and Seasons
Fishing is prohibited on some conservation areas, but allowed on others. Special regulations may apply to fishing. To determine the fishing regulations for this conservation area, consult the Missouri Code of State Regulations in Chapter 11 of the Wildlife Code.
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 160 Use of Boats and Motors
4644 - 3CSR 10-11 - 187 Trapping
Things to Do When You Visit
Designated Camping Sites
Open Camping - Walk-in/Float-in/Backpack
Special Use Permit