Riverbreaks Conservation Area

Driving Directions

Area consists of two tracts.
To the east tract: from Oregon, take Highway 59 east, then Route O south 3.25 miles to the highway sign.
To reach the west tract: continue south on Route O, then take Route T west 1.50 miles to the area.


This area is more than half forest with grassland, old fields, cropland, and prairie. Facilities/features: primitive camping, three fishing ponds, single projectile firearms range, and three permanent streams (Whales Creek, Schlotz Branch, and Forbes Creek).

About This Area

Riverbreaks Conservation Area is located in southern portion of Holt County. The area is in two adjacent tracts approximalety four miles southeast of the town of Oregon, off of Route O and Route T. This 2,307-acre area is nestled among the loess hill river bluffs overlooking the Missouri River floodplain.

Prior to settlement, Riverbreaks was likely covered by a mix of forest and grasslands. Settlers cleared, cropped or allowed animals to graze portions of the land.

The area is continuing to change and currently is a diverse combination of forest, grasslands (both new and old), and cropfields. Native loess hill prairie remnants still exists in small pockets. The forest consists primarily of upland oak hickory mixed hardwoods with scattered pockets of bottomland hardwoods.

Three permanent named creeks wind through the area. In addition there are three small fishable ponds which have been stocked with bluegill, largemouth bass, and channel catfish. Several other small fishless wildlife water holes are scattered throughout the area.

The soils in the area consists of very deep (in some locations as deep as 280 feet) wind-blown silt, called loess, covering a limestone base.

Several abandoned limestone quarries can be found along the south side of the area.

Riverbreaks Conservation Area is managed for a variety of uses, including outdoor recreation and education, wildlife habitat, productive sustainable forests and soil and water protection. Area management practices include wildlife watering holes, planted wildlife food sources, establishing and managing (often with controlled fire) native warm season grasslands,and harvesting timber for wildlife habitat and sustainable forests.

An unstaffed single projectile target shooting range is located in the center of the west tract off of Quebec Road (gravel).

General Information




Owned by MDC

(Activity Explanations)
(Population Definition)
Bird Watching  Good, area is a 50/50 mix of forest and openlands.  Get the Audubon Society of Missouri Conservation Area Bird List.  
Camping - Individual Campsites  Primitive camping around/adjacent to all area parking lots except the shooting range parking lot. No facilities provided except a single privy at the shooting range. 
Demonstrations  Active forest management including: tree harvest, tree planting, timber stand improvement, best management practices, designated mesic old growth, forest regeneration and wildlife habitat development. 
Fishing - Bass Fair population. In 3 fishable ponds on the area. 
Fishing - Catfish Fair population. In 3 fishable ponds on the area. 
Fishing - Sunfish Fair population. In 3 fishable ponds on the area. 
Hiking  Numerous access trails are available for hiking on both tracts. These trails wind thru both forest and openlands. Steep terrain is common.  Trail closed during firearms deer season and spring turkey season.  
Horseback Riding  Only on designated multiuse trail located on East tract. Steep terrain is common. Large parking lot and hitching rails are provided. No other facilities provided.  Trail is closed during firearms deer season and spring turkey season.  
Hunting-Deer Good population. Area provides good deer habitat, 50/50 forested and openland. Parts of the area have steep terrain and some long distance walks from parking areas. Deer regulations are subject to annual changes. Please refer to the Fall Deer and Turkey Booklet for current regulations.  
Hunting-Quail Fair population. Habitat is improving.  
Hunting-Rabbit Good population. Mixed improving habitat. Area is 50/50 forested and openland. 
Hunting-Squirrel Good population. Area has over 1400 acres of mixed upland oak hickory forest. 
Hunting-Turkey Good population. Area has good turkey habitat. Forest management offers good hunting opportunity along with the adjacent openlands. Turkey regulations are subject to annual changes. Please refer to the Spring Turkey or Fall Deer and Turkey Booklet for current regulations.  
Nature Viewing  Loess hills along Route T provide excellent vistas of the Missouri River flood plain especially from fall to early spring when leaves are off the trees.  
Other  Unstaffed single projectile target shooting range. No shotshells allowed. Bring your own targets. Privy on site. 
Trapping with Special Use Permit  Special use permit only, contact area manager at 816 271-3100. 

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Conservation Department Facilities
Facility Item Name Count Comments
Camping Area - Individual Campsites   Camping is allowed only around/adjacent to all area parking lots, except the shooting range parking lot.  
OtheraccessibleSingle Projectile Target Range  This is an unstaffed, single projectile only target shooting range. Bring your own paper targets. No shotshells are allowed. There are 3 target range distances: 25, 50, and 100 yards. The range is entirely disabled accessible including the privy. No alcholic beverages are allowed on the shooting range or adjacent parking lot. The range is located in the center of the west tract just off of Quebec Road. 
Parking Lotaccessible  All parking lots are graveled surface. The parking lot at the shooting range has a concrete disabled accessible pad and privy. The parking lot at the multi-use trail head, east tract off of Highway O is larger for trailers.  
Privy/Restroomaccessible  This is the only privy available on the area. It is located at the target shooting range on the west tract just off Quebec Road. It is disabled accessible. 

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Feature Item Name Count Size Comments
Fishing Lake or Pond  3.10 acres Three small fishing ponds, stocked with fish periodically. No facitities provided. Some hiking required for access to 2 of the ponds.  
Stream - Permanent Whales Creek 2.00 miles  
Stream - Permanent Forbes Creek 0.75 miles  
Stream - Permanent Schlotz Branch 0.50 miles  
Wildlife Watering Hole  10 0.10 acres These are very small fishless water holes scattered throughout the area  

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Land Cover Types
Land Type Acres Comments
Old Field 100.00 Openland areas of varying stages of early successional wildlife habitat. 
Lakes/Ponds 4.00 3 Fishing Ponds and 10 fishless watering holes. 
Native Prairie 10.00 Small loess hill prairie remnants scattered along the main loess hill ridge along Route T. 
Grassland (non-prairie) 680.00 Large areas of cool season (brome) and warm season (big blue, little bluestem, sideoats, and indian) grasslands.  
Forest and Woodland 1460.00 Extensive forestland includes a 50 acre area designated as a high quality mesic upland old growth forest. 
Other 2.80 Area Parking lots and roads. 
Crop Land 50.00 Annual small grain and biannual(weeds) wildlife foodplots and early successional bird habitat. 
Total Area Acres:2306.80 

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Designated Trails
Trail Name Trail Type Length
Hiking trail (Difficult) Hiking (Non-Interpretive) 4.00 
Multi-use trail (Difficult) Multi-Use (Hike/Horse) 4.00 

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Shooting Range General Information

95 Deg 07.782W

39 Deg 56.284N




1/2 hour before sunset until 1/2 hour after sunset, unless otherwise posted

Click Shooting Ranges for more information.

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