Johnson's Shut-Ins, Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park, Missouri
A two-hour drive south of St. Louis, the East Fork of the Black River swirls around giant volcanic chunks at Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park, Missouri's favorite natural water park. You can scramble over the rocks, slip and slide through the chutes, and relax in your own private pool (or "shut-in"). Finding your footing can be tricky, so water shoes are a must. The hike to the shut-ins is only a quarter-mile, and non-swimmers in your group can watch from the observation deck.
What's Nearby: The popular Taum Sauk section of the 360-mile Ozark Trail runs through Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park. In Lesterville you can take a Black River float trip in a canoe, raft, kayak, or inner tube. Elephant Rocks State Park is only 15 miles from the shut-ins.