The nicest park in the state, bar none. I've been visiting the park since I was a child. My grandfather took me by there, a side-trip from day-long drive we took in search of sawmill scraps for the fireplace. Since then, I've camped there, backpacked there, day hiked there. I know the main trail, the Whispering Pines Trail, as well as I know any place. And yet Hawn is the only place where I've ever been truly lost. Twice.

The park's web site has all the usual information.

One big advantage is that it's only an hour from South St. Louis County, down I-55, then west on MO 32:

And it's very close to Hickory Canyons and Pickle Springs, so if you run out of things to do at Hawn, you can always explore the area.

Mature stands of native shortleaf pine are the park's distinctive feature. The picnic area is set in one:

I usually try to spend a little time in the picnic area whenever I'm at Hawn. It's such a clean, peaceful, thoroughly civilized place that I'm surprised that I don't go down there more often, even just to read for a couple of hours and have a picnic lunch . . .