What to do in Morris State Park

**Note: This information was provided by www.mostateparks.com.

A very distinctive phenomenon in southeast Missouri known as Crowley's Ridge is the predominant feature of Morris State Park. The ridge, which extends well beyond the park boundaries, stands on average about 200 feet above the Mississippi River delta floodplain and consists of a strip of low hills from about one-half to five or more miles wide. Crowley's Ridge consists of unusual soil types and rare plant species. Morris State Park was donated to the state by Jim D. Morris to assist in the preservation of this unique natural and geologic feature.

The 161-acre park is a feature along Crowley's Ridge Parkway, a scenic byway consisting of a 42-mile route that starts at the Dunklin-Stoddard County line on Highway 25 and runs south to Malden. Morris State Park is one of many sites that can be visited along the parkway that portrays the natural, cultural or historical significance of the area.

The park offers a two-mile loop trail that extends through a large portion of Crowley's Ridge, taking visitors to the lowest point of the park. The trail also passes near the park's predominant geologic feature, a very large soil exposure, which depicts the natural erosion of the alluvial soil. A restroom, parking area and interpretive kiosks are available at the park.

The Beech Tree Trail allows visitors to experience a unique part of Missouri known as Crowley's Ridge. The uniqueness of the region and the unusual soil types provide a home for more than 300 different types of plants, a few of which are native in Missouri only to Crowley's Ridge. The trailhead features an accessible walkway that leads to an overlook, which provides views of the surrounding forest.

c/o Hunter-Dawson State Historic Site

P.O. Box 308, New Madrid, MO 63869-0308

Missouri experiences four distinct seasons with an average yearly temperature of 54 degrees F. Summer temperatures reach 90 degrees F often and are plagued with high humidity levels. Nighttime lows during the summer dip slightly near 70 degrees. September brings cooler fall weather with less humidity. By October nights begin to cool significantly and the fall foliage changes to brilliant hues of orange, red and yellow. Winter months bring an average of 24 inches of snow and normal temperatures average between 20 and 45 degrees F. Spring is characterized by wet weather with temperatures reaching between 32 and 60 degrees F.

c/o Hunter-Dawson State Historic Site P.O. Box 308
New Madrid, MO 63869-0308

Phone: 573-748-5340

Email: moparks@dnr.mo.gov
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