Hike the Yellow Trail at Busiek State Park for Beautiful Ozarks Scenery

Busiek State Park offers tons of quality hiking close to home. Hop on the Yellow Trail for gorgeous fall foliage.

By Vivian Wheeler

Oct 2019

Fall foliage along the Yellow Trail in Busiek State Park in Missouri
Photo courtesy Missouri Department of ConservationIn only 35 minutes, you can be out of the city and onto the Yellow trail at Busiek State Park.

Almost everyone we know who has hiked at Busiek, has gotten lost at Busiek. There are 18  miles of trails, so bring a map. All of the trails are worth a visit, but we like the Yellow Trail for its sweeping views of the valley below. But prepare yourself for a couple of potentially deep water crossings.

From the parking lot, cross the bridge to the trailhead. At the fork, go right and continue until you reach a creek. Cross the creek and pick up the trail downstream. Follow the trail until you reach a fork with a sign post. Go right to stay on the Yellow Trail. Keep going until you reach another fork. This is where the Yellow Trail joins the Silver Trail, and this is where people get lost. When in doubt, go right.

The trail starts to head down, which means you’re getting closer to the second water crossing. After you cross the creek, the trail heads back up. You’ll make your way to the top of a ridgeline where you’ll find panoramic views of the valley you just climbed out of. The trail ends near a historic graveyard, which is a great place to stop and explore.

Yellow Trail at Busiek State Park Information

35 minutes south from Springfield, MO
Difficulty: Moderate | Length: 4.3 miles | Kid- and Dog-Friendly: Older kids
The Big Payoff: Ridgeline views over the valley | Photo-Op: Nothing is spookier in October than a leaf-strewn graveyard shot.

More Hiking Adventures


Whether you're an avid hiker always or more of a neighborhood stroller, the Ozarks has a trail for you, no matter your skill level. Check out the best scenic trails in southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas