Columbia Bottom CA

Portions of Columbia Bottom Conservation Area has been re-opened to public access.
? Due to existing flood damage, public vehicle access and parking on the area will be limited and public access to the area will mainly be walk-in only. The public will be able to access the area in the following locations:
o Park in the Visitor?s Center parking lot and walk into the area.
o Drive on the main area road up to Parking Lot C and follow the gravel road through the south end of the area and reach the blacktop road. You can then access the boat ramp area from the blacktop road.
o Park in Parking Lot V (located near the area maintenance shop) and walk into the area.
? The Missouri River boat access is now accessible by driving the road all of the way through the area and returning to the boat ramp via the blacktop road.
? All the area trails are closed to public access until further notice due to flood damage.
? As the Department makes repairs to portions of the road damaged by spring flooding, we plan to provide more vehicle access to the area.

About this Area

For more information call
(314) 877-6014
Total Acres

Columbia Bottom Conservation Area is in north St. Louis County at the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers.

The Conservation Department purchased this 4,318-acre area in 1997 to create an urban conservation area. The area includes a view of the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers, more than 6.5 miles of river frontage, about 800 acres of bottomland forest and a 110-acre island.

A small town once known as Columbia and later St. Vrain, was located in this river bottom. It was shown on plat maps from the mid 1800s, but was gone by 1870.

A flood protection levee protects most of this bottom from minor floods. The great flood of 1993 overtopped this levee and flooded most of the area, depositing sand, and debris. The area will continue to be prone to occasional flooding.

The Conservation Department is managing Columbia Bottom to create a mosaic of bottomland habitats that includes shallow wetlands, bottomland hardwoods, prairie, and cropland. These habitats attract a wide variety of resident and migratory wildlife for the enjoyment of all of our state's residents and visitors.

There are public access facilities, including a Visitor Center, a series of educational Exploration Stations, roads, trails, a river access and a viewing area at the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers.

Things to do when you visit: 
  • Hunting
    • Dove,
    • Squirrel,
    • Deer
  • Bird Watching
  • Waterfowl Hunting
    • Morning Draw
  • Fishing
    • Catfish
  • Dog Training
  • Trails
    • Biking,
    • Hiking
  • Boat Landing (Disabled Accessible)Boat Landing (Disabled Accessible)
  • Boat LandingBoat Landing
  • Entry PointEntry Point
  • MDC OfficeMDC Office
  • Parking LotParking Lot
  • Picnic Area (Disabled Accessible)Picnic Area (Disabled Accessible)
  • Privy (Disabled Accessible)Privy (Disabled Accessible)
  • Hike / Bike TrailHike / Bike Trail
  • Hiking TrailHiking Trail
  • Viewing Platform (Disabled Accessible)Viewing Platform (Disabled Accessible)
  • BoundaryBoundary
  • MDC Road - ImprovedMDC Road - Improved

Hours of Operation

Area Hours
Area is closed from 1/2 hour after sunset until 1/2 hour before sunrise.
Building Hours
Sunday Closed
Monday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday Closed
In North St. Louis County, take the Riverview Drive exit from I-270, then Riverview north about 2.50 miles to the area.
Area Regulations
Seasonal Hunting and Fishing Information

Columbia Bottom CA-20180705-1111.jpeg

A large yellow sunflower with dark center stands in a field of more sunflowers
A large sunflower in a field of sunflowers at Columbia Bottom CA in St. Louis


A sea of yellow flowers spreads out across a field.
Field of Sunflowers at the Columbia Bottoms Conservation Area.
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