Warren

Skip Navigation LinksHome > Counties > Warren > Parks > Great Western Trail > Activities
Login

Great Western Trail

 
Biking Biking at Great Western Trail
This 16.5 mile journey can be a step back into time as travelers witness a few remaining prairie and wetland remnants. The recently paved trail, managed jointly by the Warren and Polk County Conservation Boards, preserves some of Iowa’s endangered plants, those plants that had been wiped out in other parts of the state as land-use changes were made.  Hop on your bike and enjoy the trail.
Education Education at Great Western Trail
Warren County Conservation Board Naturalists provide education programs for every age group, school, civic organization or scout group. Call 515-961-6169 to schedule a program or find out about upcoming programs in the county.
Facility Rentals Facility Rentals at Great Western Trail
The shelter houses are very popular for family reunions, scout outings and birthday parties. There are also 2 playgrounds and a restroom facility.  Call 515-961-6169 to get your event scheduled today!
Historic Visits Historic Visits at Great Western Trail
Your trip along the Great Western Trail is a journey into history. It will take you through the site of Lida, past the munitions train derailment and fire near North River and across the Churchville Prairie. In 1914 no point in Iowa was more than 12 miles from a railroad. They served many small-town elevators and coal yards. The track was opened in 1899 by the Chicago, St. Paul and Kansas City Railroad. The Chicago & Northwestern was the last train company to use the rail line which originally ran from Des Moines to St. Joseph, Missouri. A few concrete mile markers giving the distance between the marker location and Kansas City can still be found standing as sentinels from the past. The trail is full of adventure for the nature enthusiast, the history buff, and for those who simply wish to leave the noise and congestion of the city. Put on your hiking boots or hop on your bike and enjoy the trail.
Other Activities Other Activities at Great Western Trail
Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment Geocaching is a great way to see the Great Western Trail.  Visit geocaching.com to get started. 
Picnicking Picnicking at Great Western Trail
The shelter houses are available by reservation or on a first-come basis. Picnic areas are scattered throughout the trail.
Trails & Hiking Trails & Hiking at Great Western Trail
This 16.5 mile journey can be a step back into time as travelers witness a few remaining prairie and wetland remnants. The paved trail, managed jointly by the Warren and Polk County Conservation Boards, preserves some of Iowa’s endangered plants, those plants that had been wiped out in other parts of the state as land-use changes were made.  Put on your hiking boots and enjoy the trail.
Winter Activities Winter Activities at Great Western Trail
The Great Western Trail can be enjoyed in the winter as well.  Explore the trail by cross-country skis, snowshoe or your own two feet. 
167