• Hikes,  Hiking,  Illinois,  Kids,  St. Louis

    Explore an Ancient Civilization at Illinois’s Cahokia Mounds

    Long before Europeans arrived to America, the area just east St. Louis was home to an ancient culture. Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site in southern Illinois preserves the central section of the largest prehistoric Native American city north of Mexico. The city grew to cover 4,000 acres with a population of between ten and twenty thousand at its peak around 1100.  Today the site preservesย 70 of the original 120 earthen mounds built by pre-historic Native Americans. Dominating the site is Monks…

  • Hikes,  Hiking,  Kids,  Missouri,  St. Louis

    Discover a Hidden Treasure at Silver Mines Recreation Area

    Back in the 1800s the rush was on to discover precious metals. While most people think of Colorado or California as the place to hunt for gold or silver, silver ore could be found even in Missouri. In 1877, the Einstein Mining Company began operations along the scenic St. Francis River. Silver, Tungsten, and Lead were mined here until operations ceased in 1946. The mining operation was not widely successful, but a small company town sprung up for the miners.…

  • Hikes,  Hiking,  Kids,  Missouri,  St. Louis

    Marvel at the Wonder of Whitewater Rapids at Millstream Gardens

    You might not expect to find rapids and whitewater conditions in Missouri, but the stretch of St. Francis River through Millstream Gardens Conservation Area features just that. In fact, this section of the river is the home to the Missouri Whitewater Championship each spring. During the third weekend in March, racers and fans alike line the shut-insโ€™ rocky outcroppings to watch kayakers compete in a number of races. This rugged area gives visitors a feel of Colorado and rugged parks…

  • Hikes,  Hiking,  Illinois,  Kids,  St. Louis

    Fults Hill Prairie Preserve – Steep Hiking with Panoramic Views

    Bluff Road in southwestern Illinois is one of the most scenic drives in the area. Rugged bluffs rise high above the road on one side with farmland stretching toward the Mississippi River on the other. If you have ever wondered what the view is like from atop those rocky bluffs, check out the Fults Hill Prairie Nature Preserve. Located off Bluff Road near the tiny town of Fults, the hiking trail at this preserve will get your heart pumping. The…

  • Hikes,  Hiking,  Kids,  Missouri,  St. Louis

    View Historic Ruins at Fort Belle Fontaine Park

    Fort Belle Fontaine is a St. Louis County Park steeped in history. This site was established in 1805 as the United State’s first militaryย installation west of the Mississippi River. The fort took its name from a nearby spring named โ€œBelle Fontaineโ€ which means โ€œbeautiful fountainโ€ in French. Lewis and Clark camped near this site at the start of their famous expedition and also stayed at the newly established fort and trading post on their return in 1806. The fort served…