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Springfield Conservation Nature Center Loop



2.1 mile 3.4 kilometer loop
97% Runnable


Ascent: 166' 51 m
Descent: -165' -50 m
High: 1,250' 381 m
Low: 1,143' 348 m


Avg Grade: 3% (2°)
Max Grade: 8% (5°)


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A beautiful loop teeming with flora, fauna, and water features. A great place to escape the city and get into nature.

Missouri Hiker

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Spring · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife


Otherwise known as the MDC Nature Center Trails. This is a beautiful, well-marked trail system teeming with flora and fauna. A number of very nice bridges take you across the James River, and numerous creeks and streams.

Runner Notes

Great for trail runs.


We began at the Savanah Ridge Trail entrance and followed the Long Trail directions. The trail winds down and around, through canopies of trees, next to streams, and across boardwalks through water features. Keep an eye out for wildlife as you'll most certainly see a number of deer and squirrels, and possibly other small woodland creatures. As mentioned earlier, you'll take bridges across the James River and various creeks and streams. As you begin to head back up toward the nature center, you'll occasionally use some small steps created out of the natural rock in the area.

This area is excellent for running, backpack conditioning, getting the kids out of the house, or just to get yourself away for nature walks/hikes/runs. It's listed in some places as 'moderate' but, this rating would be directed more for the beginner or toward those who rarely get outdoors and 'suddenly decide' they want to take a walk in the woods. I would lean toward an 'easy' rating for those who regularly engage in running, or those who regularly participate in other outdoor activities requiring any amount of physical exertion.

Flora & Fauna

Mainly deer, squirrel, and birds. There is a possibility for other woodland wildlife. Lots of trees and seasonal wildflowers.

History & Background

Check out the MDC Nature Center for educational offerings and conferences at the trailhead.

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Jun 30, 2018
Sylvia Derks
Nov 10, 2017
Chandler Lee
Went a bit off and got onto the James river trail but most of it was on the long trail. 6.3mi — 1h 13m

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 10 votes


  4.0 from 10 votes
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in Missouri


44 Views Last Month
1,700 Since Apr 23, 2015



A sunset offers a beautiful backdrop to the meandering waters of the James River.
Jan 9, 2017 near Battlef…, MO
There are plenty of paved sections along this trail.
Dec 10, 2019 near Battlef…, MO
This is one of many bridges you'll cross. This one takes you over Galloway Creek.
Jan 9, 2017 near Battlef…, MO
Deer can be seen regularly throughout the Springfield Conservation Nature Center.
Jan 9, 2017 near Battlef…, MO
A sturdy bridge aids your travel over the James River.
Jan 9, 2017 near Battlef…, MO
A stone-step path heads to higher ground on the Nature Center Trail.
Jan 9, 2017 near Battlef…, MO


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