Chinkapin Bluffs Recreation Area

Chinkapin Bluffs Shelter
Chinkapin Bluffs Shelter

This 498 acre park is the perfect place for a picnic or party.  Rent the shelter, play on the playground, hike the trail and take the time to sneak a peak of the Iowa River valley from the overlook deck. Chinkapin Bluffs contains a 2-mile (one-way) segment of the Hoover Nature Trail.

View a video created by KCII news about the Hoover Nature Trail at Chinkapin Bluffs.

Chinkapin is a great place to view woodland wildflowers or hunt the morel mushroom.  Hunting is allowed.  Species of interest include: deer, turkey, squirrel, rabbit and pheasant.


Chinkapin is located just a few miles Southeast of Columbus Junction, IA.  The area is relatively flat on top with a steep bluff stretching down to the river valley below.  There is a 2-mile segment of the Hoover Nature Trail at the base of the bluff for walking or biking and a nice wetland area for hunting or nature appreciation. 


  • Shelter (available to rent)
  • Restrooms
  • Playground
  • Scenic overlook
  • Picnic tables & grills
  • Electricity and water

Operating Hours & Seasons

Park is open all year, including holidays from 6:30 am - 10:30 pm