POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) -
Mark Twain National Forest has closed the Wolf Creek Bicycle Trail area north of Poplar Bluff, Missouri to all recreational shooting and target practice.
There are concerns about the safety of the bike trail with shooting an target practice nearby.
More than 1.5 million acres elsewhere on Mark Twain National Forest remain open to these activities, including more than 150,000 acres on Poplar Bluff Ranger District.
There are several nearby shooting ranges available managed by Missouri Department of Conservation, as well as the Poplar Bluff Gun Club the public can use for these activities.
A map of the closed area is available at the Poplar Bluff Ranger District Office at 1420 Maud Street, Poplar Bluff, Missouri, online at http://www.fs.usda.gov/mtnf, and in the affected area.
Shooting ranges managed by Missouri Department of Conservation can be found at here.
The 21-mile trail system, currently under development, is generally west of Highway 67, about two miles northwest of Poplar Bluff between Highway PP and Highway 67 North on both sides of Forest System Road (FSR) 3107 (Wolf Creek Road).
“The trail is a partnership with Poplar Bluff Parks and Recreation Department, Butler County, Friends of Wolf Creek and other partners. Poplar Bluff Parks and Recreation hopes to link this trail to trails in the City Parks System. Missouri Department of Transportation may add bike lanes on Highway PP as part of planned road improvements in the general area,” said Mark Twain National Forest Poplar Bluff District Ranger Doug Oliver.
More than 12 miles of the trail are currently available for use by bicyclists, walkers and runners; horses are not allowed.
In 2011, the partners received a $6,000 grant from Bikes Belong, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to establishing and upgrading bicycle trails, for initial trail work. Most recently, the Forest Service received a $93,000 Federal Highway Administration grant through the State of Missouri Department of Natural Resources to complete the trail.
Organizers hope the entire trail will be completed and open to public use by December 2015.
Contact the Poplar Bluff Ranger District office at 1420 Maud Street, Poplar Bluff, Missouri, (573) 785-1475 for more information.