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Davisdale Conservation Area


Davisdale Conservation Area is located approximately 1.3 miles from the Katy Trail, in New Franklin MO

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Forum Discussions about Davisdale Conservation Area

Davisdale Conservation Area in New Franklin
cycling pete from overland park on 03/10/2024 03:17 PM:
Just an update, people seem to be missing the easy, open, and free camp area in davidsdale. There is the parking lot 1/4 mile west of the overpass, dont camp here. Turn and go away from the parking lot down the clear cut road, you will cross over a pedestrian bridge and go another 100 yards to a big open flat area that looks to have the grass cut. This shows on the map as a primitive camping area in the davidsdale brochure. On the Katy trail map here you are going to take road 457 north from the katy trail over salt creek and about 100 yards up. It's an easy quarter mile from the trail, halfway between rochefort and new Franklin. There is a creek here if you have a filter. No bathroom's, no power.

Davisdale Conservation Area in Rocheport
Anonymous on 04/02/2021 01:34 PM:
Are reservations required for the campsite? Thanks.

steve from saint louis on 04/09/2021 02:40 PM:
No reservations required there. In general, conservation areas in MO may have primitive camping. If they do, plan for a flat spot to put a tent and maybe a fire ring. Davisdale is no different. You should call them if you have any questions.


Davisdale Conservation Area in Rocheport
Jared from Kansas City on 03/24/2021 12:25 PM:
There are no designated campsites or facilities. Cars pulled in all hours of the night.

Davisdale Conservation Area in Rocheport
Geo from Madison WI on 01/06/2021 01:06 AM:
We camped at the parking lot 1/2 mile west of where the trail crosses Hwy 40. There was very little flat space for tents here and no shade from the hot sun. Cars came and went during the night. Engine braking noise from trucks on Hwy 40 was frequent. Because there are no facilities, be sure to load up on water at your prior trailhead (New Franklin, in our case). We camped here on 10/06/20.

Bill in Houston from Houston on 01/06/2021 02:37 PM:
Thank you for circling back with information. So many people ask a million questions, ride the trail, and don't give anything back.

Davisdale Conservation Area in Rocheport
K on 05/30/2015 05:40 PM:
I camped here in 5/2015. It was just a field with knee high grass and doesn't look like anyone had been there in a long time. I enjoyed it, it's just good to know what your getting into! It is easy to miss, it's down a path on the right.

Allen from Shawnee on 02/17/2016 09:11 AM:
I too have camped here although many years ago. Primative camping only, as in no water, toilets ,or tables. I believe both of the conservation areas around Rocheport are the same. I camped at Diana bend once it also was prmative.

Camping near the Rocheport Trailhead
Karen from Kansas City, MO on 10/14/2005 10:15 AM:
I'm going to be visiting the Katy trail for the first time this weekend and was wanting to camp near Rocheport. I have been able to find very limited information regarding camping. Does anyone have any input regarding camping at Davisdate Conservation Area? Or other camping suggestions? Preferable a bit secluded. I'm not really looking to be near a bunch or RVs.

j.smith from Jefferson City on 10/14/2005 12:55 PM:
Primitive camping only is allowed anywhere in the Davisdale conservation area. You might also consider New Franklin.

Larry on 10/14/2005 02:40 PM:

Campsites are available at New Franklin (9.6 miles from Rocheport) for a fee. They aren't bad...they have a showerhouse.

Ray (webmaster) on 10/14/2005 03:03 PM:
The place in New Franklin is The Katy Roundhouse, which is right on the trail. If you plan to stay there, you might want to call ahead to make sure they have room.

Karen from Kansas City, MO on 10/14/2005 03:12 PM:
Thanks for suggestions. I'm currently trying to contact someone at The Katy Roundhouse for a possible reservation. What about camping at Diana Bend? Is the "primitive" camping too bad at Davisdale? I'm use to backbacking and not having facilities. Has anyone camped there? Is there limited camping? Is it crowded? What exactly is primitive camping? I can't seam to reach anyone at Davisdale.

brad stanley from kansas city on 10/23/2005 04:05 PM:
I have the same question as Karen. I have a group of 4 dads and 10 boys. I was hoping to get some info about the campsite at Diana Bend or Davisdale.

. on 01/15/2006 11:54 PM:
I hiked the trail with one of my friends 2 weeks before I left for boot camp, we did primitive camping all along the trail at just random spots never having any trouble or issues. Just go off the trail a little ways *mark your direction so you dont get lost* and pitch tent......just avoid an open fire.

Anonymous on 01/31/2006 01:33 AM:
Ok, At the time I had no idea it was illegal, I assumed that the rule I saw posted at one of the conservation areas about primitive camping applied the whole way....Ignore the post about camping anywhere.

mike on 01/31/2006 09:08 AM:
Its too bad that "guerilla" type camping is illegal. I understand the problems that could arrise but having to pay to camp or stay in a B&B just sucks.

Trek Biker from St. Joseph, MO on 01/31/2006 02:30 PM:
I don't really think having to pay to camp is that big a deal is it?

Heck....I had to pay for my bike! And I have to pay for gas to drive several hours to ride it on the Katy. Even had to pay for the car darn it! If I'm gone all day, I even have to pay to eat!

Ahhhh....to be 12 again! Livin off Dad and Mom...stealin apples.....ridin the bike that Santa gave me.

The Dalton Boys from Austin, TX/Columbia, MO. on 02/01/2006 09:31 AM:
Trek Biker....totally agree. Mike, if you ask first I can say from experience that there are small communities that allow FREE camping in their parks, you just have to be considerate and inquire first before "diving in". Regards.....Mark of the Dalton Boys

Mike on 02/01/2006 10:33 AM:
And I agree with you. I never said I was inconciderate. I believe that permission should be given before "diving in". My point is, they tap you for every nickle and it would be nice if there were some more free camping areas for people who would like to rough it a little more. Having just done a good portion of the AT where there are shelters for campers, it would be neat to see something like that on the Katy.

My intention was not to start any problems.

Happy trails to all.

Marilyn from St. Louis on 03/10/2006 05:22 PM:
I'm just a beginner, and may be trying this on my own for now. I see a lot about biking, but can I just hike this trail and camp out in the Davis Conservation area anywhere? Are there signs that tell you where camping is okay?

Gregoreo from Columbia on 05/20/2006 05:31 PM:
Davisdale Conservation Area has two campsites each 3-6 bike minutes north of the trail. 3 miles west of Rocheport, west of the HW 40 overpass is a parking lot south of the Katy trail. Take the field access road over the levee to the north. 1/2 mile west from there is another parking lot to the south. Take the road over the levee to the north, then up a hill to the campsite. A little hike west on that ridge yields a nice bluff view of the river bottom. No toilets or water. Brochure says: "Primitive camping on a walk-in basis is allowed but only in designated areas." "No open fires except by special use permit or in fire rings provided." "Bicycles are allowed only on roads open to vehicles and service roads." No problem biking to campsites. The area can be thick with hunters from Sep 1 to Jan 31. Except then and with occasional scout groups, it is quiet. The hilly conservation area extends 2 miles further north with additional primitive camp sites.

Gregoreo from Columbia on 05/20/2006 05:38 PM:
A map: http://mdc.mo.gov/cgi-bin/atlas/gis4media.cgi?area=8229map

Lee from Lee's Summit, MO on 05/21/2006 10:38 PM:
Is calling ahead to make camping site reservations a good idea if cycling the Katy over Memorial Weekend?

ET from Columbia on 05/22/2006 12:20 PM:
I would say almost certainly not necessary--B & Bs would be a different story. The main reason to call ahead would be to make sure the places you want to stop are actually open! Also, if you're planning to camp in the city parks, I think you do need to call ahead to arrange that.

Iowa hiker on 03/29/2007 02:12 PM:
For those wondering what "primitive" camping means at the Davisdale conservation area: No water, no firepit, no outhouse, nothing except a sign giving permission to camp. Not even a scenic view. Nothing except a parking lot. For anyone looking for a bit more, go east to Katy's Katfish.

DougK from Troy on 03/29/2007 05:17 PM:

Davisdale has a campsite right next to the parking lot. Too open for my tastes. Go over the creek and follow the path (mowed lane)north for about 1/4 of a mile. The second campsite will be on the right about halfway up the hill. Nice spot, you'll see lots of deer in the morning. You have a few choices for water.

1. Pack your own in with you. Remember that water is 8lbs per gallon, gets heavy.

2. Buy a $30 pump water filter from REI, Bass Pro, Campmor, or some other outdoor dsports store. Katydyn makes a good one for under $30. This way you can safetly draw water from the creek.

3. Buy iodine or micropur pills at the same places, usually right next to the pumps. Tastes like crap but it's safe and beats the heck out of dehydration. Hint when using iodine or micropur: Sprinkl about a half teaspoon of kool-aid or other drink mix to mask the taste.

Jason from Huntsville, AL on 03/30/2007 09:31 AM:
We had planned to camp at Dianes Bend but when we got there, it looked like the only camping area was off the trail and was almost like a parking lot. No trees, no tables, no firepit, no tables...nothing. We treked on up to Katfish Katys and camped there...it was nice.

showmebikes on 04/03/2007 10:04 AM:
In nearly every thread about services provided on the Katy Trail, comments are made about the deplorable lack of services for riders and hikers. These comments are usually followed by negative comments about prices of services that are available. My extensive experience on the Katy Trail is that I've never seen anybody getting rich serving hikers/bikers. Most service providers seem to be barely making it and then only by providing service to customers who aren't using the Katy Trail. I realize that the Katy Trail provides a low cost recreation option. If you're on a tight budget, please know that no business can survive unless it makes a profit. If most of that profit comes from non-trail users then you won't be the highest priority. If you want more trail services, patronize the businesses already in place and quit griping about the prices. If you think you can provide more services at cheaper prices then there is a great business opportunity along the trail for you. Don't forget--you expect these trail businesses to be open daily and for long hours most of the year.

ss from saint louis on 03/18/2008 07:51 AM:
So, do the Davisdale campsites north of the trail allow a fire? My understanding is that some of the Conservation Campgrounds do, some don’t.

Also, anyone ever try to camp at the Hart Conservation Campsite in Hartsburg? Do they allow a fire there? I have been by where I think it is a few times, and don’t recall if it even had a sign.

Davisdale conservation area
Karl from Kansas City on 04/13/2007 12:10 PM:
I have a scout troop that is planning on using the Davisdale conservation area as an overnight location. Mile 182.1 is location from the guidebook. Can anybody give me more information on this area? Is it accessible from any roads? Is it marked clearly on the trail?

Karl from Kansas City on 04/23/2007 12:28 PM:
I had a trip to Columbia so I checked out the area first hand. Looks quite easy to find and the area is beautiful. If anyone is riding this weekend and sees a boy scout troop tromping around stop and tell them how much fun riding the trail is. I would love to get them to do a big bike trip someday.

Davisdale Conservation Area (Rocheport)
Alex from Kansas City on 06/16/2006 03:49 PM:
Check out http://www.mdc.mo.gov/ Pick the ATLAS hyperlink and it will take you to the Missouri Department of Conservation's online Atlas. If you type in the name of a conservation area (CA) in the search section it will give you details of that area, including a map in .pdf format. The maps usually show where campsites are located.