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Backpack the Hercules Glades Wilderness - Taney County, MO

  • Apr 5, 2013 · 9:00 AM

A spring trip to Hercules Glades - there should be lots of wildflowers in bloom  and maybe there will even be significant water at the falls!  Get on the waiting list here (preferably) or by email to [masked].  Once you're approved, I'll move you to the YES list.  Participation will be limited to about 8 people.  Outings like this are one way our local Sierra Club group raises money to fund operations.  A donation of $10 would be gratefully accepted.

We'll meet south of KC Friday AM to form a carpool and head down as a group (though other arrangements are possible) with a lunch stop in Ozark.  The general plan is to start at the east trail head, spend one night on the Pee's Hollow loop, and perhaps one near the falls on Long's Creek.

Trail maps: http://www.ouachitamaps.com/Hercules.html

Detailed plan:
Friday:

  • Arrive at Tower (east) trail head 1:30-2:00 PM
  • I've never been on the Pee's Hollow loop and don't know what we'll find in terms of established camping areas and water so we'll hike in .25 mile or so to cache water for Saturday (2 liters each?) along the Pilot trail, or the west leg of the Pee's Hollow loop.
  • Return to and hike up the east leg of Pee's Hollow loop to the north end (about 3.5 miles).
  • Find a place to camp.

Saturday:

  • Hike down the west side of Pee's Hollow loop. Get cached water. (about 2.5 miles)
  • Hike west on Pilot trail then south on Cedar trail to the falls (4 miles).
  • Camp in the big site near the falls if it's available.  If not, then stock-up on water and go a ways up either Rock Springs, Blair Ridge, or Coy Bald trails until a suitable spot is found.

Sunday

  • Hike out 3-4 miles.
  • Head home with a brief detour to research trail heads at the nearby Swan Creek Recreation Area, and a stop for lunch.
  • Arrive back at rendezvous location in 5-6PM time frame.

There's not a lot of hiking mileage on this trip so we should be able to relax and enjoy the scenery.  Water: you'll need to bring a couple liters to cache for late Saturday morning and carry 2-3 to camp Friday afternoon.

As usual, we'll Leave No Trace (and that means a lot more than just carrying out our trash): http://lnt.org/learn/7-principles

Don't have all the gear for a backpacking trip?  No problem, we have some available for loan to Sierra Club members for use on this outing.

During the sign-in process all participants on Sierra Club outings are required to sign a standard liability waiver. If you would like to read the Liability Waiver before you choose to participate in an outing, please go to: http://www.sierraclub.org/outings/chapter/forms/ .

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  • Julia H.

    This was our 1st backwoods backpacking trip. My son and I loved the challenge! Can't wait to try it again. Muscles I didn't know existed hurt. Mike, you are a great teacher. Thanks for the 101 class and guiding us through this beautiful countryside. Wow..14 miles! Uphill most of time and on very challenging rocky terrain. Oh, and against the wind... But we'll worth it!

    April 9, 2013

  • Michael R

    We hiked about 14 miles. Some did a couple extra.

    April 9, 2013

  • Michael R

    Temps were on the warm side with lots of sun. The wildflowers were just starting to peek out.

    April 8, 2013

  • JAMES K.

    Great time. Michael nice, knows area well, considerate yet desires puncuality the glades area is pretty, specially around the falls.

    April 7, 2013

  • Lori

    Wow so jealous. You guys have a great weekend ahead!

    April 5, 2013

  • Kerrie M.

    Sorry work committment came up.

    April 4, 2013

  • Melissa L

    Hey Mike are we meeting at the commuter lot at 9 a.m. on Friday?

    April 1, 2013

  • Rod C.

    unable to attend due to my work schedule

    March 31, 2013

  • Renee A

    Just learned we have friends coming in from out of town this weekend. Have fun & take lots of pics for me!

    March 15, 2013

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