TRI-CITY COMMUNITY LAKE
Edge Wade, 2018
101.7 acres (lake is 27-30 acres) Boone Co. DeLorme 31, G-6
Owned by MDC; call 573-815-7900 for information
Directions: From US 63 north of Columbia go east on Rt. CC to Sturgeon. At the junction of Rt. CC and Rt. V in south Sturgeon, go right for .9 miles and turn left to stay on Rt. CC. In approximately 5 miles turn right turn onto Tri-City Rd. and follow it about one mile into the area (after a sharp turn to the right).
From Centralia, go west on Rt. CC 3 miles, then south on Tri-City Rd.
This is a relatively small site with greater potential for good birding than the number of eBird reports suggests. Its “off the beaten path” location and proximity to better known sites contribute to its lack of regular birding activity.
ADA Information: Much of this area can be enjoyed from or beside a vehicle. The lake, the central and campground areas can be birded for a good variety of species (but weekends may have a lot of human activity).
When to Visit/Species to Expect: As with many central Missouri sites, the best birding is often in spring and autumn. There are a lot of ways a birder can contribute to the information for Tri-City Lake. The winter potential has been under reported. The 27-acre lake surely supports more waterfowl than represented in eBird reports. The two reports for May include 17 warbler and 4 vireo species. Summer visits have been few (none in June) so many nesting species are without records.
Some exploration of the 60 acres of forest/woodland, and nearly 15 acres of grassland are likely to be rewarded with a good variety of birds.
Features of interest to birders: The road loops through the area, forming circles along the lakeside and in the savannah-like camping area.
Most of the lake is visible from the shore along the road and from the dam, which can be walked.
Two unmarked paths lead into the woods from the north end of the camping area. One begins at the campsite closest to the lake. It runs about a tenth of a mile, just within the tree line along the lakeshore until petering out near the end of the northeast cove. The second path (unmarked) begins at the campsite just to the east of the lakeside site. This path meanders through the woods, over a few fallen trees that have been there for several years, diminishing until it forks and becomes nothing more than a deer path in two directions.
These trails provide close looks at lake and lakeside birds and access to woodland nesters.
Toilets: 1 privy (the map shows the old location; it is now where the map indicates a parking lot at the southwest point of the small loop).
Camping: Primitive, 6 sites.
Hazards/Limitations: None noted other than the usual Missouri ticks, chiggers and mosquitos in warm weather, and popularity for local recreation. Weekends may be very busy.
Nearby Birding Sites: Lick Creek CA*, Northcutt (C.L.) Mem. CA, Finger Lakes SP*, Rocky Fork Lakes CA*, Rudolf Bennitt CA*.
*Birders’ Guides available, http://www.mobirds.org/Locations/SiteGuides.aspx for these and additional guides.