Elephant Rocks is one of Missouri’s most unique state parks. You and your family can climb on and touch ancient history.
You might be wondering how all of these giant boulders got here in the first place. The folks over at Missouri State Parks have put together a fascinating history of the gigantic rock formations and the science behind how they were formed. It’s estimated the process all began nearly 1.5 billion years ago!
Elephant Rocks is a perfect place for a fun family outing. The adults can get in some cardio while climbing to the highest points of the park while the kids can burn off some energy doing the same. It’s a cool setting for some memorable photographs as well. One of the most instagrammed views of the park features “Dumbo” – a nickname (though not all that original) for the largest boulder of the bunch. It’s 27 feet tall, 34 feet long, 17 feet wide and is said to weigh at least 680 tons!
Exploring and navigating the rocks is not as daunting as you might think. While you may be inclined to bolt right up the hill, you can also make your way to the top via trail. The park has a completely accessible, one-mile trail for all sorts of visitors. If you’re wanting to climb the rocks, be sure to wear comfortable shoes with good tread as they can be slick and you’ll most likely find yourself having to hop from one rock to another on occasion. Don’t forget to bring some sunscreen, too!
There is no fee to enter the park. You’ll find picnic tables along with some open spaces if you’re planning to bring along your lunch. When I was there over the summer, there was a food truck in the parking lot. Though I wouldn’t count on it being there every day. Dogs are allowed in the park. (However they are not allowed at nearby Johnson Shut Ins, just FYI.)
Elephant Rocks State Park is located about 70 miles south of the St. Louis region. While you’re in the area you might want to check out a couple other Missouri State Park sites. Johnson’s Shut Ins is down the road as well as St. Joe State Park and Missouri Mines State Historic Park.