Looking Out for Iowa: Explore

Posted on June 9, 2016 in Blog


The warm weather moving in made us want to explore eastern Iowa’s rivers. Find out the places to go and the things to do for a day trip or a weekend away.


Upper Iowa River

Yearly the Upper Iowa River draws visitors to its cliff-lined shores for canoeing trips. Even, if you’re not enthused about canoeing, there are plenty of other attractions that make this well-known, scenic waterway a great part of the state to visit.

Visitors can participate in over 16 outdoor activities, in addition to experiencing several attractions, enjoying unique food and dining opportunities and learning something new at nearby museums. No matter what time of year you visit, there is a memorable experience to be had by all.

INHF has been actively protecting sites along the Upper Iowa since the early 1980s. 

Motor Mill

At the Motor Mill Historic Site and surrounding land, visitors can take in both history and Iowa’s natural beauty. Located alongside the Turkey River, Motor Mill is a great location for picnicking, camping, canoeing, hiking, geo-caching and appreciating land and water conservation.

INHF helped acquire the land Motor Mill is located on in the early 1980s.


Iowa’s waterways offer outdoor enthusiasts a variety of canoeing opportunities.

The Iowa DNR offers great resources and advice for novice and experience canoeists.

  • Be sure to take caution and follow the Iowa DNR advice on the weather and water conditions before shoving off. Flooding may raise river levels, increasing debris in waterways and creating unsafe streamflows.
  • If you are new to canoeing, read up on the basics with the Iowa DNR Introduction to Canoeing/Kayaking Guide
  • Plan trips on Iowa waterways with the Iowa DNR's water trail maps 
  • If you need somewhere to store a canoe in-state, check out the Iowa DNR liveries directory.
  • If you’re interested in canoeing Iowa’s inviting waterways but don’t have a canoe, check with local county conservation boards to learn more about rental opportunities.