Greer Spring – Woodside, Missouri - Atlas Obscura

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Greer Spring

Woodside, Missouri

An underground river pushes more than 200 million gallons out of this Missouri spring every day. 


The ferocious push of an underground river yields the longest spring branch in Missouri. Located inside the Mark Twain National Forest, Greer Spring is 1.25 miles of water, coming out at an average rate of 344 cubic feet per second, or 222 million gallons a day, all feeding into the Eleven Point River. 

The spring’s recharge area spans over 35 miles, much of which hasn’t been traced. It bubbles to the surface at Greer Spring Cave, where the waters come out with such force they resemble rapids. Not to mention the branch has a steep gradient into the river; it descends over six stories from the spring’s mouth.

No boating, floating, wading, or swimming is allowed in the Greer Spring branch. Greer Spring has taken at least two lives with its powerful flow. In 1884, a man was knocked to his death into the blue waters. In 1932, the flow killed a man trying to canoe across the spring. Many others have come close to drowning.

Know Before You Go

Luckily, Greer Spring is visually accessible. A 1.4-mile round trip hike through the Mark Twain National Forest leads to the bubbling beauty. Viewpoints of the two outlets of which the underground river exits can be viewed up close.

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November 17, 2022

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