Hunter Finds Explosives in Forest in Missouri

By Faye Higbee

A hunter from Fort Lenard Wood, Missouri found a cache of commercial explosives along a Jeep trail in the Mark Twain National Forest. As an Army Combat Engineer, he immediately recognized the items and reported it to the Sheriff’s Office. The items were located near where the hunter camps during the season.

hunter finds explosives

A cache of explosives was found by a hunter just inside the Mark Twain National Forest

A hunter finds explosives

A bomb disposal unit was dispatched from the Fort, along with Pulaski County Sheriff’s deputies and Missouri State Highway Patrol. As the explosives were termed too volatile to move, they were detonated on site after issuing warnings to neighbors.

According to KY3,

On Missouri 17, south of Waynesville just inside the national forest, there’s a little dirt path used by hunters and campers.   In a clearing just a few hundred feet from the highway, a hunter found a box containing a significant amount of explosives.

A bomb squad from Fort Wood used a robot and found commercial explosives and decided it could not be moved and had to be detonated there.  The sheriff’s office warned neighbors in the area and, about 15 minutes later, two large explosions rattled windows in the area and left two craters each about two feet across. Leaves were blown off trees and the explosion set a small brush fire that was quickly put out by firefighters.


The detonation created two craters around 2 feet in depth

The type of explosives was not released, but officials did state that they were commercial grade, and not easily purchased.

Suspicious activity

Recently in Missouri there have been now three suspicious occurrences:

Late November- December: thefts of propane Tanks in Independence and Lee’s Summit. Close to I70. Propane tanks detonated with explosives would create a horrific disaster.

December – over 100 cellphones purchased in several Walmarts in Columbia and Lebanon. Close to I70.

December – explosives found along a hunting path. Closest freeway, I44. Found off Highway 17 just inside the National Forest.

Missouri a target?

Is  Missouri a target now? Or is this something else entirely? Only time will tell. The investigation is continuing.

“Given how volatile it was, I’m glad that he found it.  Kids ride their bicycles down there; other hunters go down that path; and it’s getting on deer season.  It would have been loaded with people down there so we’re pretty grateful.” Pulaski County Sheriff’s Sgt. Eric Dean.