If you are looking for a travel destination that combines all of the best opportunities of a recreation area, look no further than Crowder State Park in Trenton, Missouri. Whether your idea of fun is camping, fishing, picnicking, swimming, hiking, equestrian or mountain biking trails, or a combination of all of these adventures and more, you will find that Crowder has everything, and in abundant supply.
Since 1938, when Crowder State Park opened, the public has enjoyed more than 1,912 acres full of recreational opportunities or just plain places to relax and take in the sights and sounds. Even better, unlike a lot of more famous park destinations, Crowder is a place where you won’t have to fight the maddening crowds to enjoy all of the attractions this emerald jewel offers.
Camping: The park campground is open from March through November (On-season is April 15 through October 31). Modern camping facilities are available that are outfitted with such conveniences as restrooms with showers, a laundromat and dumping station. Campsites are basic or electrical. Campfires are permitted, but due to an advisory in the outbreak of the Ash Borer Beetle, ash wood is not permitted. Wood for campfires can be purchased at the park. Group camping and special use camping areas are available. The use of generators is prohibited in the campground, unless approved by the park manager. Special consideration will be given for use of generators relating to customer health and safety.
Fishing, Boating & Swimming: At the center of the park is 18-acre Crowder Lake, the focus of numerous aquatic activities. You can fish for channel catfish, largemouth bass, crappie and blue gill, and is available to the public during park hours. Boats are permitted, but gas-powered motors are prohibitted. Boating with electric trolling motors is allowed, however no boat rentals or other marina activities are offered. Need a break from the summer heat? Take a refreshing dip in Crowder Lake. A sand beach and bathhouse are available. All the attractions of the coast, but without the sharks!
Picnicking: There are a total of 25 picnic areas available to the public. If you are planning a large gathering of friends or family, rent one of the two open picnic shelters at a rate of $35 per day. If not reserved, the shelters are available daily on a first-come, first-served basis at no charge. One enclosed shelter is available by reservation only at a rate of $50 per day. The enclosed shelter is fully furnished for events such as receptions and reunions, and is equipped with a restroom, sink, stove, refrigerator, heater and fireplace. Reservations can be made up to nine months in advance. All three shelters are equipped with outdoor grills. The park also has 25 picnic areas throughout the park.
Hiking: Crowder State Park has five trails totaling more than 15 1/2 miles available for a variety of purposes, from hiking and bicycling to equestrian.
Equestrian: One trail, the Thompson River Trail, permits equestrian use.
Mountain Biking Trails: Three of the four available trails are appropriate for mountain biking. These are River Forks Trail, Thompson River Trail, and Tall Oaks Trail.
Playgrounds: There are two playgrounds available for the kids (or kids at heart). One is available at the picnic area, and the other is located next to Shelter House # 1.
Meeting Areas: For large family or other large gatherings such as reunions or receptions, there is an enclosed shelter overlooking Crowder Lake that is available for rental. The shelter can occupy approximately 60 guests. The shelter is furnished and equipped with a restroom, sink, stove, refrigerator, heater, fireplace, and other amenities that make it the perfect site for your party. The shelter is available April through October. Reservations for use can be made up to nine months in advance. There’s even a paved tennis court available for use.
Crowder State Park is the ideal park for visitors who want to escape the hectic pace of city life and enjoy the outdoors in a tranquil and relaxing setting. Much of the park is shaded with thick forest growth with a wide variety of trees, plants and flowers. Wildlife, including deer, raccoons, wild turkeys and others also make their homes at this park.