These Old Hills & Hollers

“The Ozark terrain contains unique land forms, shaped during the land’s distant past. The Ozarks, which contain some of the oldest exposed rock in North America, have undergone a series of uplifts, erosional cycles, climatic changes, and geologic events such as volcanoes and earthquakes.

Sinewy hickory trunks snake black against brilliant late-fall color. Drury-Mincy Conservation Area, Taney County, Missouri. October 28, 2011.

The land also contains a variety of different rocks from hard, weather-resistant granite to limestone and dolomite that can be dissolved by water.

Because of this geologic variety, the Ozarks have special landscape features such as sinkholes, shut-ins, weather-shaped large rocks and entrenched meandering steams.”

— excerpted from the Missouri State Museum, Jefferson City, Missouri.

A sassafras seedling reaches for the sun. Drury-Mincy Conservation Area, Taney County, Missouri. October 28, 2011.

bald knob:

a treeless, but usually grass-covered knob. See knob. Glossary, page 169


in Ozark parlance, a narrow, steep-walled valley with a spring or waterfall at the head, which usually falls swiftly to a larger valley at the cove mouth. On Ozark lakes, locals also use the word “cove” as it is widely known, to mean a small, enclosed arm of the lake. Glossary, page 169


Ozark spelling /pronounciation of “hollow.” The word holler, of course, means “to yell”; the two meanings can be distinguished by context. See hollow. Glossary, page 171.


a narrow valley or deep depression in the terrain. There are thousands of hollows in the Ozarks, among the hills and knobs. See knob. Glossary, page 171


(sometimes spelled nob) a narrow, high hill with a capstone top, surmounted by a dirt dome. Knobs may be tree-covered or bald (without trees but grass-covered. Glossary, page 171

Excerpts — Young, Richard & Judy Dockrey, Ozark Ghost Stories, August House Publishers Inc., 1995.

Bear Mountain is intriguing as the sun sets. Blue hills beyond beckon and autumn colors shine through dark silhouettes. Drury-Mincy Conservation Area, Taney County, Missouri. October 28, 2011.