Van East Mountain
Centered on two-knobbed Brown Mountain to the west and three-knobbed Van East Mountain to the east, this Wilderness includes a little over 2000 acres and reaches 1130 feet in elevation. An area known as “Weiss Shutins” occurs at the south end of the mountain along Rock Creek. Other small grottoes occur throughout the area. Long Gravel Branch flows through the area, with small springs adding a steady flow of water to the creek.
Barren outcrops high on the south flank of the mountain provide superb vistas into the Lower Rock Creek Wilderness to the south. Other outcroppings occur throughout the area, offering soul-filling vistas of surrounding valleys and ancient hills.
Portions of the two mountains are known for excellent displays of the fragrant and beautiful rose azalea. Ozark witch hazel flourishes in the gravelly streambeds.
Four distinct community types are found on the area. These communities are of such high quality that the University of Missouri identified this area in a special study as one of the outstanding natural areas in southeast Missouri.
Van East Mountain Wilderness is located north of Highway D approximately three miles west of Silver Mines Recreational Area, and a portion of the area connects to the proposed Lower Rock Creek Wilderness to the south making for a valuable wilderness corridor. Several primitive hiking trails found in the area, along with old abandoned logging roads, make the area easily accessible for nature study, day hiking, or for overnight backpacking trips.
Map provided for reference information only. MWC is not responsible for it's accuracy.