Support Current Projects

These current projects need financial support now. Each of them will become public lands with wildlife benefits.

  • Central Iowa 4-H Camp

    Stretching 1,011 acres along the Des Moines River Valley, the former central Iowa 4-H Camp offers a sense of wildness in the heart of central Iowa unlike any other.

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  • Green Hill Ranch

    Spanning nearly two miles of the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway, Green Hill Ranch is a classic example of Loess Hills topography—rolling hills of oak savanna, remnant prairie and grassland.  Once fundraising is complete, this 506-acre property will become public natural land—an escape from the city and a haven for birdwatchers, hunters and hikers.

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  • Southern Wildlands

    The Southern Wildlands are made up of four properties in Clarke, Madison and Warren counties that offer water quality improvements and a diversity of habitats including wetlands, riverbanks, tallgrass hilltops and native forests. Once funded, the Southern Wildlands will provide more than 2,600 acres of quality wildlife habitat and an escape from the city. 

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  • Wallace & Bowers Nature Area

    Water that flows into Big Spirit Lake is just beginning a long journey through the Iowa Great Lakes system. What happens here affects many waters that Iowans love. This project will improve water quality in the region, increase wildlife habitat and has the potential to expand recreation opportunities in the area.

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  • Bartels

    North Shore Project

    More conservation is coming to three parcels of land within a quarter-mile of Big Spirit Lake in Dickinson County.
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  • Current Trail Projects
    • Laurens Trail Connection

      Laurens Trail Connection

      This 2.2-mile former railroad corridor will extend the existing 1.9-mile Laurens Trail southeast of the City of Laurens. Both the planned and existing trail are part of the Pocahontas County Trails Plan, which seeks to connect the existing 40-mile Three Rivers Trail in Pocahontas, Humboldt and Wright counties. Once completed, the planned corridors will nearly double the trail’s length. 

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      Dry Run Trail 

      A mile of former rail corridor runs through 170 acres of woodlands and open space on Dry Run Creek. Besides being an attractive county park, Neste Valley will be a trailhead and a very scenic midway stretch for the envisioned 8-mile connection of Trout Run Trail in Decorah to the Prairie Farmer Recreational Trail (Calmar to Cresco). This would connect a 43-mile trail system in Northeast Iowa. 

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    • Connector to link High Trestle Trail with Raccoon River Valley Trail

      This 9-mile future trail between Perry and Woodward will connect two of Iowa's biggest and best trail systems! This is the connection that everyone is waiting for. While this project is in its early stages, contributions now will help Dallas County Conservation match and secure public grants to kick off the trail.

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    • Iowa River Trail

      This 34-mile former rail corridor between Marshalltown and Steamboat Rock follows the beautiful Iowa River Greenbelt and connects with Pine Lake State Park. Through Marshalltown, this new trail will connect with the Highway 330 Trail and Heart of Iowa Trail. (Central Iowa through Hardin and Marshall counties.)

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    • Coon Rapids to Herndon Trail

      This 17-mile connection is the last link to connect the Raccoon River Trail to Whiterock Conservancy, a 5,500-acre outdoor recreation area! The Raccoon River trail is part of the Central Iowa Trail System, a 700 mile network of continuous trail in and around Des Moines that includes the High Trestle Trail.

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    • Farragut connection to Wabash Trace Nature Trail

      Admiral Trail

      This 4-mile trail will give you another way to enjoy the Wabash Trace. The go-getter people of Farragut (pop. 485) are working hard to connect trail users with their community, and the Admiral Inn Café is eager to host events for trail enthusiasts. (Southwest Iowa in Fremont and Page counties.)

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    • Prairie City Trail

      Prairie City Trail

      The development of this trail extension, connecting Monroe, Prairie City and Mitchellville, is part of the long range goal of linking the Des Moines metro with Lake Red Rock and Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge.

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