Rudolf Bennitt Conservation Area

Bicycling and horseback riding are not allowed on area trails before 1 pm during Spring Turkey Season - April 19 through May 12, 2021.

Trail work is ongoing on the west side of the area during this time.

About this Area

For more information call
(573) 815-7900
Total Acres

Rudolf Bennitt Conservation Area contains 3,575 acres at the junction of Boone, Howard, and Randolph counties. It is named for Dr. Rudolf Bennitt, a zoology professor who was instrumental in getting the Conservation Department formed in the 1930's. Bennitt also served as technical advisor to the first Commission. The original tract was purchased from 10 sellers in the mid-1960's, the largest former landowner being the Catholic Church of Moberly. The mostly gentle, rolling terrain is 75 percent forested. Fields of native warm-season grasses andbottomland fieldsare scattered among the forests. This area was treated like most of Missouri's land before it was bought by the Department. The timber was grazed, logged, and burnt by occasional fires sweeping through the area. Through forest management, the Department is trying to improve tree growth, quality, and diversity. Better forests provide wildlife habitat for animals such as deer, turkey, dove, and quail, and help maintain watershed quality. Rudolf Bennitt Lake (48 acres) was built in 1999 by the Department of Conservation in cooperation with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA) as part of the Moniteau Creek Watershed Conservation Plan. The lake provides a good fishery for bass, catfish, bluegill, crappie, and redear sunfish. Lake facilities include a disabled-accessible boat ramp, a fishing dock, and restroom. Watering ponds have been built to provide habitat and water for the area's wildlife species. Occasional tree harvests encourage shrub growth for animal forage and cover. Hikers, bikers, and equestrians may enjoy the Moniteau Trail. During ALL portions of firearms deer season and spring turkey season, the trails are closed to ALL other uses except hunting.

Things to do when you visit: 
  • Hunting
    • Deer,
    • Turkey,
    • Squirrel,
    • Dove
  • Bird Watching
  • Camping
    • Individual Campsites,
    • Open Camping - Walk-in/Float-in/Backpack,
    • Designated Camping Sites
  • Fishing
    • Black Bass,
    • Catfish,
    • Crappie,
    • Sunfish
  • Shooting Range
    • Rifle or Pistol
  • Trails
    • Biking,
    • Horseback,
    • Hiking
  • Boat Landing (Disabled Accessible)Boat Landing (Disabled Accessible)
  • Camping SiteCamping Site
  • Entry PointEntry Point
  • Fishing Dock (Disabled Accessible)Fishing Dock (Disabled Accessible)
  • Managed Public WaterbodyManaged Public Waterbody
  • Parking LotParking Lot
  • Privy (Disabled Accessible)Privy (Disabled Accessible)
  • Rifle / Pistol RangeRifle / Pistol Range
  • Hike / Bike / Equestrian TrailHike / Bike / Equestrian Trail
  • BoundaryBoundary
  • MDC Road - ImprovedMDC Road - Improved
  • MDC Road - ServiceMDC Road - Service

Hours of Operation

Area Hours
Sunday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Monday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Tuesday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Wednesday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Thursday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Friday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
Saturday 4:00 AM - 10:00 PM
From Columbia, take Highway 63 north 19 miles, then Route F west 5 miles, then Route T north 2.75 miles, then County Road 2930 west 0.50 mile to the area.
Shooting Range Info
Range Name
Bennitt (Rudolf) CA
Range Id
Maintenance Days
Business Hours
1/2 hour before sunrise to 1/2 hour after sunset, unless otherwise posted
Type of Complex
Range Type
Target Distance
Disabled Access
Area Regulations
Seasonal Hunting and Fishing Information