Activities

 
Biking Biking at Bear River Recreation Trail
This 6.6 mile trail runs from Twogood Park in Preston, north and east of Spragueville on county road 45th Street along the Maquoketa River to County Road Z34. This crushed lime trail is located on the abandoned Chicago-Milwaukee Railroad line and is open to hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing.

Jackson County Recreation Trail main page
Boating Boating at Maquoketa River Water Trail
The Maquoketa River offers boating opportunities for interested visitors.  There are concrete boat ramps at Joinerville Park, Maquoketa City Access, Spragueville Access, and Highway 52 Access.

Maquoketa River Water Trail main page
Boating Boating at Spruce Creek Park
Spruce Creek park contains a boat harbor with 92 boat dock slips including transient dock spaces. Two concrete boat ramps are available for public use.
Boating Boating at South Sabula Lake Park
South Sabula Lakes Park is surrounded by water and makes an ideal spot for all water-related sports. A concrete boat ramp and a public dock are provided for easy access to South Sabula Lake and the Mississippi River.

South Sabula Lakes Park main page
Boating Boating at Joinerville Park
Joinerville Park is situated along the Maquoketa River in Jackson County.  It is a major recovery point for paddlers that float down the river.  There is a concrete boat ramp and picnic area.  This land was a gift from the Wilbur Siders and Melvin Joiner families.

Joinerville Park main page
Boating Boating at Driscolls Island
This 1/2 acre peninsula situated along the causeway in Sabula is a highway rest stop for motorists and offers fisherman and boaters access to Middle Sabula Lake.  The area is named in memory of Martin Driscoll who served as a conservation board member for 21 years.

Driscolls Island main page
Camping Camping at Buzzard Ridge Wildlife Area
The 273-acre area is located along the South Fork of the Maquoketa River. The unique beauty of Northeast Iowa is very evident here with limestone rock outcroppings, upland timber, flood plain, wildlife, and panoramic scenery. Wildlife food plots are planted throughout the area to help wildlife survive harsh winters. Primitive camping is available by the river with restroom facilities nearby. This area is a convenient stop for canoeists traveling down the Maquoketa River.

Buzzard Ridge Wildlife Area main page
Camping Camping at Spruce Creek Park
Spruce Creek Park has 85 camping sites available with electricity, modern showers and restrooms, a large picnic area, two shelters (available to reserve), a trailer dump station, and playground equipment. Firewood is available for sale.
Camping Camping at South Sabula Lake Park
South Sabula Lakes campground is a great location surrounded by water.   The 40-unit campground has electrical and water sites. This area contains modern showers and restroom facilities, a trailer dump station, and a playground. Firewood is also available.

South Sabula Lakes Park main page
Camping Camping at Ozark Wildlife Area
This primitive campsite is accessible for backpackers. This area has roughly 5 miles of developed hiking trails 
Canoeing & Kayaking Canoeing & Kayaking at Joinerville Park
Joinerville Park is situated along the Maquoketa River in Jackson County.  It is a major recovery point for paddlers that float down the river.  There is a concrete boat ramp, small primitive camping, and picnic area.  This land was a gift from the Wilbur Siders and Melvin Joiner families.

Joinerville Park main page
Canoeing & Kayaking Canoeing & Kayaking at Maquoketa River Water Trail
Canoe and kayak enthusiasts can take advantage of a well-developed and maintained river trail system along the Maquoketa River in Jackson County.  There are two forks of the Maquoketa River that meander some 50 miles through the county, meeting just north of the town of Maquoketa.  The river then flows another 30 miles until it reaches the the Mississippi River.  There are numerous public access places for padllers to enter the river.  The North Fork is considered more scenic for paddlers but the South Fork offers more public accesses.

Maquoketa River Water Trail main page
Canoeing & Kayaking Canoeing & Kayaking at Ozark Wildlife Area
The pristine North Fork of the Maquoketa River allows paddlers to experience some of Iowa's most remote areas with unique views of limestone bluffs and outcroppings. Primitive camping allowed in designated site.
Education Education at Hurstville Lime Kilns
Visit this 3-acre historic site to learn more about limestone mortar and the company town Hurstville.  This historic site is open to the public year round.  Tours are available to groups or individuals upon request.  Contact the Jackson County Conservation office at (563) 652-3783 to schedule a tour. 
Education Education at Millrock School
This limestone rock building was built in 1867 and is typical of the one-room schools that once dotted the countryside. The school served the town of Mill Rock until 1910.
Education Education at Hurstville Interpretive Center
Jackson County Conservation Environmental Education Staff offer a variety of things to the public - public programs, tours, programs for groups, field trips, summer day camps, and much more.  Click here to go to our Environmental Education page. 
Equestrian Activities Equestrian Activities at Black Hawk Wildlife Area
This 180-acre public hunting area along the South Fork of the Maquoketa River was purchased in 4 different parcels, including a formerBoy Scout camp. This area contains a system of trails maintained for hiking and is also open for equestrian use June through August.

Blackhawk Wildlife Area main page
Fishing Fishing at Hurstville Fishing Pond
The Hurstville Pond is stocked with bluegill, large mouth bass, and bullhead for heaps of fishing excitement. 
Fishing Fishing at Driscolls Island
This 1/2 acre pennisula situated along the causeway in Sabula offers fisherman and boaters access to Middle Sabula Lake.  This area is named in memory of Martin Driscoll who served as a conservation board member for 21 years.

Driscolls Island main page
Fishing Fishing at Hurstville Interpretive Center
The Hurstville Pond, located across Highway 61, is stocked with bluegill, large mouth bass, and bullhead for heaps of fishing excitement. 
Geocaching Geocaching at Hurstville Interpretive Center
Join Jackson County's geocaching adventure​! With caches hidden throughout the property, you'll be exploring in no time! 
Geocaching Geocaching at Bear River Recreation Trail
Join Jackson County's geocaching adventure​! With caches hidden throughout the property, you'll be exploring in no time! 
Historic Visits Historic Visits at Millrock School
This limestone rock building was built in 1867 and is typical of the one-room schools that once dotted the countryside. The school served the town of Mill Rock until 1910.
Historic Visits Historic Visits at Hurstville Lime Kilns
The 3-acre Hurstville Lime Kiln site features a roadside rest area for travelers along state highway 61.  There is a picnic shelter with tables.  Interpretive signage tell the visitor the story of the kilns and a stairway allows visitors to walk up around the kilns.  No other facilities available.
Hunting Hunting at Baldwin Marsh
Baldwin Marsh is open to Youth Hunting ONLY.  This allows young hunters 12-15 years of age the ability to learn hunting skills from an adult guardian in a non-pressure setting.

This 67-acre area includes a wetland, native prairie, and restored prairie, providing excellent habitat for waterfowl and upland birds.  The wetland is one of the best examples of an upland marsh once very common in Iowa.

Baldwin Marsh main page
Hunting Hunting at Ozark Wildlife Area
Ozark's remote, undeveloped landscape provides excellent habitat for deer, turkey, squirrel and much more. Public hunting is allowed on this property. 
Hunting Hunting at Buzzard Ridge Wildlife Area
The 273-acre area is located along the South Fork of the Maquoketa River. The unique beauty of Northeast Iowa is very evident here with limestone rock outcroppings, upland timber, flood plain, wildlife, and panoramic scenery. Wildlife food plots are planted throughout the area to help wildlife survive harsh winters.

Buzzard Ridge Wildlife Area main page
Hunting Hunting at Cottonville Conservation Area
This rolling 40-acre tract of land consists of grasslands and upland timber and is open to the public for hunting.
Cottonville Conservation Area main page
Hunting Hunting at Bald Forty Preserve
Access to this 40-acre tract is by walk-in only. This area adjoins the 700-acre state-owned Big Mill Wildlife Area. This area is named from the clear cutting done on the property in the 1940's. Since that time the area has reforested itself into a well-established mixed hardwood forest.

Bald Forty Preserve main page
Hunting Hunting at Black Hawk Wildlife Area
This 180-acre hunting area is located along the South Fork of the Maquoketa River.
Blackhawk Wildlife Area main page
Other Activities Other Activities at Ozark Wildlife Area

Sport Climbing 

There are two bolted crags at Ozark Wildlife Area- Hoot Bluff and 187 crag- that feature short, overhanging climbs on south facing walls.

 

Climb at your own risk! For specific route information, please visit http://www.mountainproject.com/v/ozark-wildlife-area/109515202#a_109515203

Picnicking Picnicking at Hurstville Lime Kilns
This 3-acre historic site features a roadside rest area with a picnic shelter.  Interpretive signage tell the visitor the story of the kilns and a stairway allows visitors to walk up around the kilns.  No other facilities available.
Trails & Hiking Trails & Hiking at Bear River Recreation Trail
This 6.6 mile trail runs from Twogood Park in Preston, north and east of Spragueville on county road 45th Street along the Maquoketa River to County Road Z34. This crushed lime trail is located on the abandoned Chicago-Milwaukee Railroad line and is open to hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing.

Jackson County Recreation Trail main page
Trails & Hiking Trails & Hiking at McNeil Nature Preserve
This 58-acre area was donated by Archie and Heidi McNeil in 1999. This upland preserve has rolling hills covered with cedar trees and small pockets of native prairie. A trail through the maze of cedars provides a beautiful solitary hike or ski outing.

Trails & Hiking Trails & Hiking at Hurstville Interpretive Center
Over a mile of trails weave through Hurstville's tall grass prairie and wetland. The outer loop features a bird blind, pergola, and rock circle while the inner loop showcases the resident swan enclosure. Paved, handicap accessible walkways are also featured in the center's natural playscape. 
Trails & Hiking Trails & Hiking at Black Hawk Wildlife Area
This 180-acre along the South Fork of the Maquoketa River contains a system of trails for hiking.
Blackhawk Wildlife Area main page
Trails & Hiking Trails & Hiking at Buzzard Ridge Wildlife Area
The 273-acre area is located along the South Fork of the Maquoketa River. The unique beauty of Northeast Iowa is very evident here with limestone rock outcroppings, upland timber, flood plain, wildlife, and panoramic scenery. Wildlife food plots are planted throughout the area to help wildlife survive harsh winters. Hiking trails are available throughout the area.  Map of trails at bottom of page.

Buzzard Ridge Wildlife Area main page
Winter Activities Winter Activities at Hurstville Interpretive Center
Snowshoeing and ice skating make it easy to get outside in the winter. Our ponds and marsh make excellent ice rinks, and our trails are open all year round for activities. Pick up a set of snowshoes inside the center for FREE during regular business hours. 
Winter Activities Winter Activities at McNeil Nature Preserve
This 58-acre area was donated by Archie and Heidi McNeil in 1999. This upland preserve has rolling hills covered with cedar trees and small pockets of native prairie. A trail through the maze of cedars provides a beautiful solitary hike or ski outing.
Winter Activities Winter Activities at Hurstville Fishing Pond
Ice skating is a fun way to enjoy the winter months! Make sure there is at lease 4" of ice before you strap on your skates.