Looking to relax on a lake with pure, cool water but don't want to have to drive too far from St. Louis. Lake Lincoln in Cuivre River may be just the thing you are looking for. There's a sandy public beach that generally draws a good crowd on weekends, a crystal clear creak, a beautiful lake, great hiking, and scenic picniking spots.


  • A beautiful, fairly large, clean lake only an hour from St. Louis
  • Large Sandy Beach. The beach, which is open seasonally from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., also has a place for visitors to change.
  • A boat ramp where you can put in kayaks, canoes, tubes, and larger boats
  • There’s also a crystal clear creek in the park, perfect for little kids to wade and play in.
  • Several really scenic Picnic/BBQ spots overlooking the lake through a lovely forest.
  • Nice windy drive through the forested hills of the park.
  • Kayak and Canoes can be rented from a spot near the beach at a very affordable price (see link below) but reservations are required in advance.
  • Beyond the wonderful water amenities, the rest of the park is quite large and includes trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding.
  • After a nice day of relaxing on the water, catch the sunset from Frenchman’s Bluff overlook to finish off a wonderful day in nature.


  • Goose poop – the public beach had a lot of goose poop all over. Could be easily avoided but still, just not what you picture in paradise.
  • I saw mentions of , “no swimming” in the main part of the lake but I don’t think it is enforced in any way. I’m sure they don’t want you swimming at the boat launch due to the congestion that would cause but I saw quite a few groups swimming with their own floatables in several different sections of the lake.

Getting There

Take highway 40/64 or highway 70 West about an hour. Google provides accurate directions.



A fun, relaxing adventure with Friends

Friends invited us to join them at Cuivre River. Between our two families, we have lots of assorted floatables (kayaks, paddle boards, inner tubes, canoe, rafts, …) so we decided to meet up at the boat ramp, hop on the inflatables, and paddle our mixed flotilla over to an alcove where the adults could relax while the kids played. It was a spectacular way to spend the afternoon on a hot summer day.


We saw quite a few folks fishing both times we were there though we didn’t ask them how the fishing was. The lake is generally stocked with a variety of fish, including channel catfish, large mouth bass, and blue gill.