Visitors Guide to the
Tower Rock Conservation Area County Road 460, off State Road A
Perry County, Missouri
Tower Rock, also known as Grand Tower, is a small landmark limestone
island carved by the Mississippi River. The earliest European mention of
this island is by French explorer Jacques Marquette who passed by the
formation in 1673. Tower Rock Conservation Area comprises about 25 acre
of upland forest with stands of oak-pine and oak-hickory-beech. The
mainland offers picnic facilities and a 1/4 mile hiking trail to a
viewing platform that offers
a scenic view of Tower Rock. The island itself is accessible if the river is particularly low,
otherwise it is only accessible by boat, but this can be dangerous due
to the whirlpools south of the island. Tower Rock is a designated
National Historic Site.
Lewis and Clark Connection On
November 25, 1803 Lewis and Clark “Arrived at the Grand Tower a little
before sunset, passed above it and came too on the Lard. shore for the
night.” The next day Lewis described Tower Rock made of “limestone & the
same quality of the clifts heretofore described” and that there were
“strong courants thus meeting each other form an immence and dangerous
whirlpool which no boat dare approach in that state of the water…”
Visit our special
and Clark Section to learn more about the Corps of Discovery’s
experience during their stay in the Middle Mississippi River Valley. greatriverroad.com’s
special coverage includes information on all of the region’s sites and
events as well as supplemental articles relating to the expedition’s
experience during the winter of 1803-04.
Tower Rock Conservation
Areais listed on the National Audubon Society's
Great River Birding Trail.
This is a good site to observe forest birds and bald eagles in winter. The Missouri Audubon Society
for birds that can be seen in this area.
Visiting the Tower Rock
6 am - 10 pm There is no charge to visit the Tower Rock
Directions: Take State Highway A east from Altenburg to County Road
460 (which is a gravel road). Follow County Road 460 to Tower Rock
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