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“A hidden gem of a hiking place”

Pinnacles Youth Park
Ranked #1 of 1 things to do in Sturgeon
Attraction details
Reviewed 5 February 2018

A hidden gem of nature hiking not far from Columbia. Sad that there are no signs on the highway showing this place. The signs at the parking lot indicate it as a private place, but it is open to the public at no cost. That is a little confusing. The scenery is very nice of the cliffs which were clearly visible in February with all the trees still bare with no leaves. It is not a long hike to the pinnacles, but some scrambling is required to get to the top of the rocks. No good signage is available on the trails, but they are short trails anyway. There was a one page guide at the trail head, but that page did not have a map of the trails, instead had descriptions of the trails, which were somewhat helpful. There is a cave and a beach at the end of a small trail which are worth a stop. In summary, this is a nice place for about a half day visit.

Date of experience: February 2018
Thank Previa1994
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"great place to hike"
in 2 reviews
"pavilions"
in 2 reviews
"donation"
in 2 reviews
"rocks"
in 4 reviews
"hiking"
in 4 reviews
"columbus"
in 7 reviews
"nature"
in 4 reviews
"scenery"
in 3 reviews
"mo"
in 2 reviews
"cave"
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3 - 7 of 19 reviews

Reviewed 30 October 2017

This is a simple park with a range of attractions. Check a map or use a GPS to get here because there is a sign off of U.S. 63 north of Columbia, MO but not much after that. Take the indicated turn then turn right again. Follow that road back south 1/8 mile then follow it left and stay on it downhill until the gateway into Pinnacles appears. There is free parking for 10-15 cars and a couple of concrete-floored pavilions with the capacity for big groups. There are bathroom facilities nearby.
Heading east from the parking lot you'll see the information kiosk and donation slot. If there's been enough rain (not lately) there will be a wadeable stream that you can cross to access the base of the Pinnacles formation. The most useful trail heads south then west along the west bank of the Silver Fork Creek. If you follow that trail, forks to the left lead to the creek and you can eventually find a spot to cross and join the that climbs to the top of the karst formations across from the parking lot.. If you stay on the west side of the creek you will come to a small bridge. Straight ahead leads you to a small sandy beach in front of the cave. The stream is deeper and slower here. On the return you will return to the small bridge. Just before it you can go left and climb to the upper side of the rock shelf that made the cave roof.

Date of experience: October 2017
1  Thank grouch0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 September 2017

This Park is a hidden Gem. The trail will take you from a beautiful creek great for skipping rocks and getting your feet wet to up in the top of these unique rock structures. Really great photo opps. and a great place to hike.

Date of experience: September 2017
Thank 548niccim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 June 2017

My husbands kids wanted to take their Dad on a hike for Father's Day so we went to the Pinnacles and we had a great time.
Once you cross the creek you'll be able to climb the rocks and walk on the trails. It's gorgeous this time of year with all of the wild life and nature.
A couple of tips:
Wear old shoes, the rocks in the creek are super slick your better off just walking through it.
I like to bring a walking stick.
If your going to be climbing the rocks you'll need both hands to maneuver so bring a backpack for keys, water & your phone.

Date of experience: June 2017
Thank Stacy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 20 October 2016

I took my kids (ages 10 & 14) here on a Sunday in mid-October after seeing a friend's picture after she had hiked here the week prior; she recommended that we check it out now that the leaves are changing colors. I am so glad we did!!! We first did the short hike down to the Shelving Rock, which was nice and cool in the shaded overhang. There was one other family there when we arrived, and their kids had clearly been playing in the sand of the "beach" there for a while. We returned back to check out The Pinnacles from below before we followed the instructions on the pamphlet to cross the creek and make the hike up. We didn't spend nearly enough time there (~2 hours), nor had we intended to since we didn't know what to expect, but we will definitely go back to do to the full hike, look for fossils, enjoy a picnic, splash in the creek, etc. This was a great place to soak in the sun, but still have plenty of shade, and take some incredible pictures of the landscape that isn't like the rest of Columbia!

Date of experience: October 2016
Thank Cecilia O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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