Best Bike Trails in Iowa

Dec 30 2014

When camping, one of the most invigorating activities you can partake in is exploring the local bike trails. Most campers provide enough storage space or hitches to bring you and your family’s bikes along for the ride no matter where you go.

Biking is beneficial because it allows you to cover more ground than you would be able to on most hikes. When planning your next trip, be sure to incorporate some of the best bike trails in Iowa.


This trail is located around the Des Moines area. It is 89 miles long and surfaced with asphalt and concrete. Raccoon River Trail runs between Clive and Jefferson from west to north and allows trail users to pass through 15 Iowa towns and counties. There is also plenty of natural beauty to be seen as large segments of this trail are lined with trees, also providing cyclists or other trail users with a shady canopy or tunnel on hot, sunny days. Open areas of the lengthy trail offer extensive views of the Iowa countryside which is everything from agricultural fields to patches of native wildflowers and grasses. The fee for riding along this trail is $2.00/day or $10.00/year for those 18 and older.


The beautiful Heritage Trail is comprised of 26 miles of beautiful limestone between Sageville and Dyersville in northeast Iowa. Along the Heritage Trail, you will also discover deep, rugged woodlands, wetland communities and prairies. You might even see traces of former mining and mill towns as it follows the former Chicago Northwestern rail bed. Ride the Heritage Trail in the Dubuque area for $2.10/day or $10.50/year for ages 12-64 or $5.75/year for ages 65 and up.


See some of the most amazing bodies of water that the state has to offer with 14 paved miles from Mini-Wakan State Park on the north edge of Big Spirit Lake south to Milford, past Okoboji Lake and Arnolds Park. An addition 11 miles of this trail follow the west edge of West Okoboji Lake and the east side of Spirit Lake. The Iowa Great Lakes Trail provides view of the beautiful blue lakes, sandy beaches and more obscure natural areas, many of which are protected by the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation (INHF). This trail is open year-round with no restrictive hours and is totally free to ride.