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Columbia Bottom is a mosaic of natural areas including wetlands, forests, prairies and croplands. The area encompasses the 110-acre Duck Island on the Mississippi River, as well as more than six miles of river frontage.
A road runs through the area, with eight exploration stations along the way, where visitors can view surrounding habitats in a self-guided learning experience. The confluence of Missouri River and Mississippi River – the fourth largest river system in the world – can be observed from the site’s Confluence Viewing Platform, located at the end of the road.
The visitor center has a number of educational displays designed to help guests become acquainted with the site. Naturalist-led educational programs are frequently offered for the general public, plus special programs for school and scout groups. Please call ahead, as most programs require advanced registration. The area offers hiking, biking and river access.
Columbia Bottom Conservation Area is in North St. Louis County: take the Riverview Drive exit from I-270; travel north on Riverview about 2.8 miles and follow the signs.
Columbia Bottom Conservation Area is closed from one-half-hour after sunset until one-half-hour before sunrise, except for authorized hunting, fishing and boat ramp use.
The Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area is located southwest of Columbia. This 4,286-acre area is known for shorebird and migratory game bird viewing. Seasonally flooded wetlands attract numerous species of birds, making this a top site for bird watchers and migratory game bird hunters. The Missouri River flows along the western border of the area and Perche Creek flows along the easter border.
This area provides more than 7,000 acres of natural beauty and outdoor recreation in the heart of scenic Missouri wine county. The rugged Lewis and Clark Trails reward hikers with impressive overlooks to the Missouri River. The 10-mile Lost Valley Trail gives both hikers and cyclists a chance to stretch their legs. The area also offers access to the Katy Trail. All the way, there are plenty of birds and wildlife to see with binoculars and capture with a camera. A boat ramp provides access to the Missouri River and a number of ponds make for other great fishing opportunities. The site is also home to the Weldon Spring Hollow Natural Area. The Natural Area designation identifies a place that exemplifies pristine natural features of Missouri. Weldon Spring Conservation Area is accessible from several parking areas along Route 94, south of Route 40/61.
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