United States

Branson, MO

A Comprehensive Guide to the Best Places to Run in Branson and Nearby Spots

Located in the Ozarks, Branson is popular visitor destination, owing to its mountain setting and numerous theaters and entertainment options. Most of the development is on the west side of the White River/Lake Taneycomo, which forms a bend on the east and southern side of the city. The options for running in Branson include some trails in the downtown area around Branson Landing, plus some parks and preserves nearby. Those who want some hill running have lots to choose from in this area!

The best place to run in central Branson is along the Branson Landing Boardwalk and the Roark Creek Trail which connects to it. Nearby, Lakeside Forest Wilderness Park offers some pleasant, wooded running. There are also great running trails in Table Rock State Park. Dogwood Canyon Nature Park is a tourist spot with some good trails for running. The Ozark Mountain Highroad is a good option for a longer road run with great mountain views.

Those running in Branson should note weather can be very hot and humid in summer. Seek out some of the more wooded routes. It’s a great place for running in fall — add these routes to your foliage list!

Editor's Picks

Some of our favorite runs in Branson, MO

See All Routes
  • All Routes
  • Iconic Routes
  • Weather & Climate
  • Where To Stay
  • Stores & Group Runs
  • Events

Branson Landing Boardwalk

Branson, MO

The signature running path in Branson runs for just over 1 mile from Branson Landing to North Beach Park. Nice lake views and interesting sites. Longer run: connect to the Roark Creek Trail, at either end of the Boardwalk Trail.
Explore

Roark Creek Trail

Branson, MO

A good longer run option in Branson, incorporating several parks, the Branson Landing Boardwalk Trail, and some wooded sections. Total distance is ~3.5 miles one-way.
Explore

Downtown Branson Tour

Branson, MO

Downtown Branson is not going to win any awards for running. But for those wanting to add to other central Branson routes or get in some variety, there are some quieter side streets that are pleasant enough for creating your own route.
Explore

Lakeside Forest Trails

Branson, MO

Terrific, mainly wooded trail running just two miles west of downtown Branson. One can put together a 4-5 mile route in this 200-acre forest. Trails are of varying difficulty. Don't miss the 338 stone steps coming off the Bluff Trail!
Explore

Ozark Mountain High Road

Branson, MO

American Scenic Byway winding its way through the Ozarks for 7 miles. Starts 5 miles north of Branson. A great way to get in a long run with minimal turns and great views. Note the road is hilly and busy with cars, but there's decent shoulder.
Explore

Table Rock State Park Trails

Branson, MO

Good variety of mainly wooded trails located on Table Rock Lake, 9 miles southwest of Branson. Best bets are the 2.2 mile Lakeshore Trail and the 1.5 mile Chinquapin Trail. Additional loop trails offer more rugged trail running options.
Explore

Dogwood Canyon Nature Park

Branson, MO

A nature preserve that's also a bit of a kitschy tourist attraction, requiring paid admission. There are 9 miles of trails, including 6 miles of paved trails, with some nice scenery -- waterfalls, caves, Dogwood Creek.
Explore

Branson Landing Boardwalk

Branson, MO

The signature running path in Branson runs for just over 1 mile from Branson Landing to North Beach Park. Nice lake views and interesting sites. Longer run: connect to the Roark Creek Trail, at either end of the Boardwalk Trail.
Explore

Branson has a humid subtropical climate, consisting of hot, humid summers and cool to cold winters. Runners should be aware of the summer heat, where average high temperatures are near 90F. Nights to cool off, owing to the mountain location. Spring and fall offer great weather for running. Winter high temps are in the mid-40s (6C), though nights dip into the low 20s (-6C) — so there can be snow and ice, more so at elevation. The 44 inches (1,000mm) of rain that falls throughout the year is evenly spread.

Branson is a major tourist destination, so there’s a good selection of hotels in the area. For easy access to a good run without having to get in your car, try to stay within some proximity of the Branson Landing Boardwalk.

RUNNING STORES

There are not any independent running stores in Branson, but there are a lot of shopping options. There’s a Nike Factory Outlet and a Journeys shoe store.

GROUP RUNS

The Ozarks Running Club is a local running group (not sure how active it is).

This calendar shows events in Branson, the Ozarks, and nearby Springfield. Localraces.com is another good resource.