Marble Creek | Crane Lake | Mark Twain National Forest

posted Jul 23, 2017, 11:14 AM by ORCC Off Road Camping Club   [ updated Jul 25, 2017, 10:23 AM ]

Marble Creek Recreational Area 

Mark Twain National Forest Camp 

Great Places to Go Camping!

This area with its beautiful creek, camp and picnic grounds is located between Fredericktown and Arcadia, MO. Marble Creek, rushing 20 miles through the rugged St. Francis Mountains, is named for deposits of attractively colored dolomites which were mined and used in the building trade as “Taum Sauk Marble”. Within the recreation area, you can see the concrete remains of a grist mill dam and building foundation. This dam was the third to be built here and was operated until 1935. This quiet campground and recreation area is the main trailhead for the Marble Creek Section of the Ozark Trail. This 8-mile segment goes to Crane Lake and is open for hiking, equestrian and mountain bike use. Horses are allowed at trailhead, but not within campground or picnic area. 

Directions:  From St. Louis, take Hwy. 21 south to Hwy. E just south of Arcadia, Missouri, then, east to Marble Creek Campground.   Latitude : 37.4511628   Longitude: -90.5428632

Campground Camping:

Campground facilities include 24 single sites and 2 double sites, each with table, fire ring and lantern post.  Two centrally located vault toilet buildings serve campers and trail users.  There is no drinking water, but  the campground is adjacent a year-round stream.  Trash service available April - October. Sites are first come-first served. Horses are allowed in the trailhead parking area, but not in the campground and picnic areas.

Number of Sites:  24 Singles | 2 Double Sites

Fires:  Fires must be contained within Fire Ring, Grill, Stove or Other Device.

Reservations:  None

The campground and picnic area is open from April thru October and the trailhead parking for the Ozark Trail is open year-round. Area Closed from 10:00PM to 6:00AM (Except for Campers)

Crane Lake Recreational Area

Mark Twain National Forest

Great Place to Go Fishing and Hiking! 

Crane Lake was originally created many years ago by impounding Crane Pond Creek with an earth fill dam at the upstream end of a “shut-ins” or narrow gorge cut in the granite bedrock.  The lake is about 100 acres in size and approximately 40 feet deep at the dam.

Crane Lake is undergoing a partial (12 foot) drawdown that will result in a lake that is approximately 40-50 acres in size. This is being done to complete maintenance and engineering studies. Once the water level begins to drop, boat launching will not be feasible.  However, shoreline fishing, hunting and hiking at Crane Lake will continue to be permitted except immediately near the dam where the maintenance work will be occurring.

Hours of Operation:  Open Year Round

Usage:  Light Hours

Restrictions:  Electric Motors Only

Closest Town:  Ironton, MO.

Operated By:  US Forest Service

Trail:  Ozark Trail

Directions:  From Ironton, MO, take Hwy E south for 9 miles; right on Iron county road 124 for 2.5 miles; left on Iron County Road 131 for 2 miles.

Latitude:  37.4240348  Longitude:  -90.6286448

Backpacking | Hiking:  Crane Lake National Recreation Trail.  Five mile double loop trail, the south loop of which connects to the Marble Creek Section of the Ozark Trail.

Day Hiking:  Crane Lake National Recreation Trail.  Five mile double loop trail, the south loop of which connects to the Marble Creek Section of the Ozark Trail.

ORCC Off Road Camping Club


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