North Fork Recreation Area

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Floating the North Fork of the White River

North Fork Recreation Area provides camping, picnicking, boating, canoeing, hiking and fishing access to the beautiful North Fork of the White River, which has a total of nine major springs flowing into it. Two of its largest springs are Big Springs and Blue Spring, which contribute some 18 million gallons of cold, clear water every day. North Fork Recreation Area serves as trailhead for the 35-mile long Ridge Runner National Recreation Trail and the Blue Spring Trail.

Contract has been awarded for North Fork Access project. Work is expected to start October 2016. A new launch will be constructed and the current launch site/water play area will be reconfigured. There could be short-term closures as a result of the renovation. Please check the Mark Twain National Forest website or call the Ava/Cassville/Willow Springs District office for the current information relative to closures of the area. Thank you for your patience while we improve the North Fork Recreation Area. Thank you.

At a Glance

Operational Hours: North Fork Recreational Area is open seasonally 5/15-11/30 (no water after 10/3), including day use area (river access and picnic area). Gate will be closed at CC Highway from 11/30 – 3/1. Walk in traffic welcome at this time for day use only - NO CAMPING ALLOWED during this time. Day Use: 6:00 AM - 10:00 PM. Campground is for Campers only. Quite Hours: 10:00 PM – 6:00 AM; Check out time: 2:00 PM
Rentals & Guides: Dawt's Mill/Ozark Mills Carriage Co.; Petit's Canoe Rental; River of Life; Sunburst Ranch Canoe Rental; Twin Bridges Canoe Rental
Fees Campground nightly fees are $10.00/nonelectric; $15.00/electric; Day Use Area Fees: $2.00 per vehicle; $10.00 per bus.
Permit Info: Annual day use parking permits available for $20.00 at the Ava Ranger District, 417-683-4428 (M-F 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM)
Usage: Medium-Heavy
Restrictions: Drinking water  available May 15 through October 15. During temperate months, be prepared for biting insects, poison ivy and high temperatures. NO Lifeguards on duty.
Closest Towns: West Plains, Dora
Water: Pressurized Drinking Water System
Restroom: Vault
Operated By: USDA Forest Service, Mark Twain National Forest

General Information


From West Plains, MO take State Route CC west 16 miles. From Highway 181 just south of Dora, MO take State Route CC 3 miles east.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


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