Mark Twain National Forest
401 Fairgrounds Road
Rolla, MO 65401
Council Bluff Recreation Area
Area Status: Open
This lake is the largest of the lakes on the Mark Twain National Forest and is managed under a special use permit from the USDA-FS. Offers camping, picnicking, hiking, fishing, and swimming. The lake was created by a dam across Big River; the lake is 87 feet deep at its deepest point with an area of 440 acres. Boat motors are limited to 10 horsepower or must be operated at a no wake speed if larger than 10 horsepower. A Printable Brochure is available.
At a Glance
Beach: 5/24/13 thru 9/3/13: 10:00AM – 8:00PM
Campground: Open Year-Round 6:00AM – 10:00PM (except for campers)
Boat Ramp: Open Year-Round
Lake Shore Trail: Open Year-Round
Day-Use Fee: $3 per vehicle; $10 per bus; $20 for season pass. Pavilion - may be reserved; additional fee of $25 for the pavilion, plus $10 reservation fee. Camping Fee - $10.00 single and $20 double sites. Chapel Hill Beach - 54,000 sq.ft. sand beach; concession stand; coin-operated hot showers; changing rooms; flush toilets; body showers.
Individual concessionaire may have certain restrictions in place; no food, glass containers or pets on beach.
From St. Louis, take Hwy. 21 south to Potosi (60 miles); turn west on Hwy 8, then south on Hwy P at the first stoplight; continue south on Hwy P (12 miles) to Hwy C, then turn west for .1 miles to Hwy DD; turn south and continue to entrance (7 miles).
Beaches & Dunes
Chapel Hill – Open 5/24/13 thru 9/3/13.
Concession stand, coin-operated hot showers, flush toilets, water fountains, body showers, and a 54,000 sq. ft. sand beach is provided. A small play area with slide and climbing structure is adjacent to the beach. No lifeguard on duty.
Hours of Operation:
10:00AM to 8:00 PM 7 days a week.
Lakeshore trail - This 12-mile loop trail is managed for mountain biking and hiking. Horses are prohibited from this section of the trail. A spur trail links to the Trace Creek Section of the Ozark Trail.
The trail can be accessed from the Wild Boar Hollow Boat Ramp Parking Lot. A $3 day use fee applies for those using this facility.
Wild Boar Campground, open year-round, has 39 single sites, 7 double sites, 9 walk-in sites, and 4 group sites, each with table, fire ring, lantern post and (except for walk-in sites) a parking spur. Drinking water and vault toilets are conveniently located. Coin-operated hot showers available at Chapel Hill from 5/24/13 thru 9/3/13. Pressurized water hydrants available in central locations.
Single Sites - $10; Double Sites - $20; Group Sites - $25
Can accommodated up to 40' RVs. No electric or water hookup, showers or dump station facilities. Sites are available for reservations through www.recreation.gov, or by calling 877-444-6777.
4 group camp sites which can accommodate up to 50 people each and is available for reservations at www.recreation.gov.
Lake and Pond Fishing
Red-ears, bass, sunfish, and catfish may be caught from shore, fishing pier, or boats. Council Bluff Lake is stocked with largemouth bass, red-ear, sunfish, bluegill, crappie and catfish. Fishing is permitted year round. There are 2 boat launches on Council Bluff Lake: Wild Boar Hollow and Enough. Fishing regulations are established by Missouri Department of Conservation.
12 mile long Council Bluff Trail encircles the lake, with spurs to the campground. Trace Creek Section of the Ozark Trail is located just west of the recreation area. A printable brochure is available.
Waterfowl hunting is permitted on Council Bluff Lake and the Enough Fields provide upland game opportunities. Hunting regulations are established by Missouri Department of Conservation.
17 single-family picnic sites, including a minimum 8-foot table and pedestal fire grill. Several of these sites have accessible surfaces or deck. One site has a small shelter. A pavilion with 8 tables and a group grill is available for available for reservations through www.recreation.gov, or by calling 877-444-6777.
A pavilion with 8 tables and a group grill can accommodate group of up to 75 adjacent to the Chapel Hill Beach. This can be reserved through www.recreation.gov or by calling 877-444-6777.
Boating - Motorized
Boat Motors limited to 10 horsepower, or no wake.
Boating - Non-Motorized
Canoes and paddle boats are available for rent, when Chapel Hill is open 5-24-13 thru 9-3-13.
54,000 sq. ft. sand beach. A small play area is located adjacent to the beach. Swimming area delineated by buoys and floating plastic pipe. No lifeguard available.