You have to make this trip! Immerse yourself in native woodlands and forest, streams and springs, and uplands and pastures. Cool off in a crystal clear river. And how can you miss the house that the Beatles visited while in Missouri.

THE NATIONAL WILD AND SCENIC River System was created by Congress in 1968 to preserve rivers with outstanding natural, cultural, and recreational values. The Eleven Point River in southeast Missouri was among the first on the list.

The new Eleven Point State Park includes six miles of frontage on the river, where the US Forest Service maintains the wild and scenic character that earned it national recognition. Because it is spring fed, the river features the clear, cold water that characterizes the best of the famed Ozarks’ floating streams.

The state park includes more than 3,000 acres of native woodlands and forest, 14 tributary streams and several springs, and nearly 1,000 acres of open uplands or pasture. The fields have been heavily grazed, and prescribed burns may be used to bring back the natural landscape of grasses and wildflowers beneath open woodlands of scattered post oaks.

Visitors could put in canoes or kayaks at the access at Riverton and float alongside the park nine miles to the Highway 142 access, which is known as The Narrows. It’s a quiet stretch with solitude. That’s saying something on our Ozark rivers.

Photo by Tom Uhlenbrock

The large house on what was known as the Pigman Ranch hosted the Beatles during a break from their 1964 tour of America. The house’s exterior displays the Ozark style called “giraffe” because the irregular sandstone resembles that animal’s hide.

4,167 acres in Oregon County

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