Mark Twain National Forest
401 Fairgrounds Road
Rolla, MO 65401
Deer Leap Recreation Area
Area Status: Open
The Deer Leap Recreation Area is situated on the east bank of the Current River and provides a boat launch and floater access/tuber launch. The Deer Leap Campground is closed in 2013, but recreationists using the area are served by the nearby Float Camp Campground. Amenities include: water, vault toilets, and launch facilities. The Deer Leap Boat Ramp provides launching capabilities for motorized and non-motorized boats with ample parking. There is a vault toilet located at the boat ramp. The Tuber Launch is temporarily being operated at the end of the campground, and is a popular put-in for floating the Current River for both private floaters and outfitters. Most private floaters take out below the bridge in Doniphan at the public boat launch, and outfitted floaters take out at the outfitter’s private launches in Doniphan. This float takes about 5 hours.
At a Glance
Deer Leap Campground is open only for floating access; the campground remains closed because of the river floating access lost earlier this year due to flooding. Deer Leap Boat Ramp is open for use.
Floater’s access in the campground is open 5/24 to 10/1, with boat ramp open year-round.
Rentals & Guides:
There are rental opportunities for rafts, canoes and tubes available from two outfitters to float the Current River located in Doniphan, MO. KCs on the Current, 206 Jefferson St., Doniphan MO. 63935. Telephone No. 573.996.7961 and Rocky River Resort, 304 W. Jefferson, Doniphan, MO. 63935. Telephone No. 573.996.7171
For the boat ramp there is a daily use fee of $2 per day for vehicles. There is no reservation system for the campground, boat ramp or tuber launch. The tuber launch has no fee. There is a 50% discount for anyone with a Golden Age, Golden Access Passport, Senior Pass or an Access Pass.
Fees will be paid at the fee tube provided. No overnight camping is allowed. Fireworks are prohibited. More specific restrictions are located on the provided recreation bulletin boards.
This recreation area is operated by KCs on the Current under a concessionaire permit.
Located approximately 5 miles north of Doniphan, Mo. From State Highway 160 take County Road Y heading north for approximately 5 miles. Take a left onto Forest Road 4349. Continue down FR 4349, veer to the left to go to boat ramp or veer to the right to go to the Deer Leap Campground and floater access/tuber launch.
Camping & Cabins
The Float Camp Campground, about 1 mile from here, serves recreationists using this area. Amenities include: water, vault toilet, picnic tables, fire rings and lantern posts.
No. of Sites
No. of Accessible sites
Available at Float Camp Campground, about 1 mile from here. Most sites accommodate RVs up to 34’ in length, and some can serve larger units.
River and Stream Fishing
The clear and cool Current River near Doniphan, MO provides both motorized and non-motorized fishing opportunities.
Rod & Reel
Bank, Private Boat
While there are no established hiking trails within the recreation area, some people do hike along the roads or near the river. Woodchuck Trail is a 1/2 mile trail and White Oak Trail is a 1 ½ mile trail, both of which originates at the Float Camp Recreation Area, near here, and are suitable for hiking only. The Current River Section of the Ozark Trail is also located near here, and provides longer hiking opportunities.
Boating - Motorized
Small motorized boats may be launched at the single-lane, concrete Deer Leap Boat Launch, year round.
Boating - Non-Motorized
Canoes, kayaks and other non-motorized boats may be launched at the concrete Deer Leap Boat Launch, or carried down at the floater/tuber access. There are rental opportunities for rafts and canoes available from two outfitters to float the Current River located in Doniphan, MO. KCs on the Current, 206 Jefferson St., Doniphan, MO, 63935. Telephone No. 573.996.7961 and Rocky River Resort, 304 W. Jefferson, Doniphan, MO, 63935. Telephone No. 573.996.7171
The float from the Deer Leap Access to the accesses in Doniphan takes about 5 hours in a float tube, but may bary depending upon water conditions and current. Tubes may be rented or shuttles arranged in Doniphan from KCs on the Current, 206 Jefferson St., Doniphan MO. 63935. Telephone No. 573.996.7961 and Rocky River Resort, 304 W. Jefferson, Doniphan, MO. 63935. Telephone No. 573.996.7171