Rural Missouri Magazine

Heavenly Hawn
Hawn State Park

by Jim McCarty

Hawn State Park offers beautiful scenery for those willing to don hiking boots and explore the trails.

Two completely different kinds of rock make Hawn State Park near Ste. Genevieve one of Missouri's most interesting natural areas.

In places highly erodable sandstone has been carved into fascinating towers like those called the Chimney Rocks. Elsewhere tough granite has stood up to the furious onslaught of Pickle Creek and River aux Vases.

The result is a dramatic series of shut-ins like the one shown at right. These welcome little waterfalls and cool refreshing pools wait to soothe the hiker who comes to pay a visit.

To really appreciate Hawn State Park you must don rugged hiking books and hit the trail beneath the best remaining stands of shortleaf pine, the only pine native to Missouri.

Along the trail you will gasp at the stunning vista presented from the top of steep cliffs, always accompanied by the music of the cascading creek. Even the creek is special — scientists say some 20 species of fish live here and it has been declared an outstanding state water resource.

Rare plants abound here. For the less intrepid the park offers a complete picnicking or camping experience that includes showers and electric sites.

For more information contact the park office at (573) 883-3603.

Rural Missouri | June 2020 Issue

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