Iowa Nature September 04, 2016
10 Easy Hikes To Add To Your Outdoor Bucket List In Iowa
Iowa is full of amazing trails, where you can enjoy the woods, wildlife, fields and other sights and sounds of nature in our beautiful state. While summer is coming to an end, there’s still time to get outdoors and enjoy some of the great hiking Iowa has to offer. Here are 10 easy hikes that will get you outdoors and enjoying the scenery.
1. Mines of Spain State Recreation Area, Dubuque
The trails in the beautiful Mines of Spain Recreation Area are varied, both in scenery and difficulty, so make sure to assess the difficulty level before choosing a trail. You’ll see all kinds of sights as you hike, from forests to prairie to limestone bluffs.
2. Stone State Park, Sioux City
Stone State Park is situated next to the Big Sioux River. Overall, there are 8 miles of hiking trails, two of which are around the beautiful Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center.
3. Pine Lake State Park, Eldora
Pine Lake State Park has plenty of trails perfect for hiking, all with gorgeous views. The park is large, with 565 acres and two scenic lakes.
4. Trails around Clear Lake
Clear Lake has trails that travel all around its beautiful lake, so you’ll have a water view along the whole way.
5. Wabash Trace Nature Trail, Western Iowa
The Wabash Trace Nature Trail contains 63 miles of trails running through Council Bluffs, Mineola, Silver City, Malvern, Imogene, Shenandoah, Coin and Blanchard. Part of the trail runs through the unique and beautiful Loess Hills.
6. Wapsipinicon State Park, Anamosa
Wapsipinicon State Park was one of Iowa's first state parks, and provides a variety of lovely scenery, with the river, limestone bluffs, woods and wildlife. There are multi-use trails you can hike that will lead you through all of the scenic beauty.
7. Palisades-Kepler State Park, Mount Vernon
This park is a great place for hiking. There are six miles of trails, with a plethora of wildlife, trees and flowers to admire as you walk.
8. Pony Hollow Trail, Elkader
This 4-mile round trip hike starts at Elkader’s City Park and takes you along the old Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railroad beds. The view is definitely worth the trip.
9. Yellow River State Forest, Allamakee County
Yellow River State Forest provides 45 miles of beautiful, multi-purpose trails ranging from easy to moderate. On the hike, you’ll have access to scenic overlooks, wildlife, streams and gorgeous wooded areas.
10. Gray’s Lake Park, Des Moines
Des Moines has an extensive trail system with a total of 60 miles of trails that are in the city or pass in and out of the city. The Downtown Des Moines Trail Loop has a trail that passes around the beautiful Gray Lake in Gray’s Lake Park.
Have you been on any of these hikes? For more great outdoor activities in Iowa, here is The Ultimate Bucket List For Anyone In Iowa Who Loves The Outdoors.