This immense natural playground is the primary feature of the 180-acre Johnson’s Shut-Ins Natural Area, only a portion of the 8,549-acre Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park. Most of the park, including the shut-ins and two miles of river frontage, was donated in 1955 by Joseph Desloge, a St. Louis civic leader and conservationist from a prominent lead-mining family.
Play in the shallows of the East Fork of the Black River. Shoot through Mother Nature’s hydraulics in the shut-ins. Hike a trail that will show you 1.4 billion years of geologic history. Take your horse on a pretty mountain trail. Johnson’s Shut-Ins State Park is a jewel of the system, a place with something for everyone: pretty picnic areas, Ozark landscapes, natural places to swim, and great campsites.