Meramec State Park & Meramec Caverns – April 19-21, 2019

Easter weekend – the kids have spring break, and the husband and I are celebrating our 17th wedding anniversary by going camping!

Meramec State Park

Main Park Road

The park is very pretty, and the road leading to the campground is beautiful.  There were lots of dogwood and redbud trees along the road, but very few pines.  This photo was taken through my windshield, but the real colors are much, much nicer!

Campground Map (from Mo State Parks Website)

I suspect that in later months the campsites are more wooded, but at this time, it was slightly shady but not as much as it will be later in the season.  This image includes our site, #111:

Campground Aerial view (from Bing Maps)

The check-in area is to the top left, the shower house and playground are visible to the left near the river, and our site is the largest pad site to the left of the leg of the triangle.  It was a nice site – but the paths are all one-way, so we had to drive around the entire western loop to get into the spot.

Our tent

It was very wide open during our visit – the RV (electric) area was pretty full, but the tent (non-electric) area was pretty empty.  It was cold – according to our phones, the overnight low was 41 on Friday night and 46 Saturday night, so we were cold, but we have nice warm sleeping bags and decent blankets, so we were comfortable.

Emptyish Basic Camping Area

There’s a very nice playground near the shower house, and the 12-year-old enjoyed that – he’s a little big for it, but there were lots of children there so he found people to play with.

Meramec State Park Campground Playground

Meramec Caverns

Near (in a roundabout way) the campground, Meramec Caverns is a tourist destination.  This commercial cave is actually located very close to the campground, but to access it, it’s about a 1/2 hour drive.

The roof of the cave, just outside the entrance

I didn’t go into the cave, although I was told later that I would’ve been fine in there with my walker.  They don’t allow strollers, so I’m not sure if I really could’ve used it or not. However, I enjoyed sitting outside the cave, along the edge of the river.  The Meramec Caverns area also has a zipline available, and there’s a pavilion for a steamboat, though I never saw one.  These activities all have separate costs.  There is a restaurant and gift shop in there, too.

The Meramec River

Courtesy of my daughter, this photo is the light show during the cave tour.

Meramec Caverns Light Show

The Area

If, like us, you have trouble making meals over a campfire, the town of Sullivan is very, very close by and has most chain restaurants available, and a few local ones, too.  If you’ve forgotten camping necessities, there are several shops including Dollar Tree, Walmart, Orscheln, and a few other outdoorsy stores.  There’s also a Lowe’s.

Links

Meramec Caverns

Meramec State Park or Meramec State Park

Fisher Cave (not open during our visit)