MDC closes Henges Shooting Range, Columbia Bottom due to flooding and urges caution near rivers and streams

News from the region
Saint Louis
Published Date

ST. LOUIS, Mo.—The Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) Jay Henges Shooting Range and Outdoor Education Center in High Ridge is now closed due to the flood-related shutdown of I-44.  MDC also closed its Columbia Bottom Conservation Area in Spanish Lake earlier this week because of flooding conditions.  The visitor center at Columbia Bottom currently remains open during normal operating hours.

A number of other MDC river accesses and conservation areas in the region may also close or have restricted access due to high water or flooding conditions.  For current information regarding closures on MDC areas, consult the “Check for Closings” link at before setting out.  Area re-openings will also be posted there.

MDC urges caution near any rivers and large creeks during flood conditions.  Anglers, boaters, and floaters should re-evaluate any plans they may have for activities on the water in the near future.  High water levels, swift currents, and floating debris can be especially hazardous.  Hikers and campers should be aware that sudden rises in creeks and streams could leave them stranded with no way to cross, or flash-flood low-lying campsites. 

Low-water stream crossings are particularly dangerous for motorists. The National Weather Service says almost half of flash flood fatalities are vehicle-related.  Drivers can lose control of their vehicles in as little as six inches of water, and the current in two feet of water is enough carry most vehicles away.