Places to Go: Big Creek Conservation Area

By Larry Archer | July 1, 2021
From Missouri Conservationist: July 2021

Good trails make good neighbors

As the old saying goes, good fences make good neighbors. But in the case of Big Creek Conservation Area (CA) in Adair County, it’s good trails that make the connection between it and its neighbors.

Located on 1,064 acres southwest of Kirksville, Big Creek CA sits between the city to the east and Thousand Hills State Park to the west, connecting the two with a multiuse (hiking and biking) trail that traverses the area, said Big Creek CA Manager Ryan Jones.

"Being that it’s right next to Kirksville, there’s a trailhead for Thousand Hills multiuse trail on Big Creek, so there’s a lot of people from the public that either start or end their hike on Big Creek," Jones said.

The uses of the multiuse trail, which passes through savannah and woodland habitats, go beyond hiking and biking to include birding and running, he said.

"A lot of people go out there to bird because it’s a mixture of grassland and forest, so there’s the whole suite of different habitats and species," he said.

The area — in cooperation with the park and a local running group — also hosts an annual 10K race in August and half marathon in October.

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This Issue's Staff

Magazine Manager - Stephanie Thurber

Editor - Angie Daly Morfeld

Associate Editor - Larry Archer

Photography Editor - Cliff White

Staff Writer - Bonnie Chasteen
Staff Writer - Kristie Hilgedick
Staff Writer - Joe Jerek

Designer - Shawn Carey
Designer - Marci Porter

Photographer - Noppadol Paothong
Photographer - David Stonner

Circulation - Laura Scheuler