Popular Kayaking Spots in Iowa
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Iowa is a beautiful state known for its rolling hills, lush fields, and winding rivers. It is the perfect spot for kayakers of all skill levels looking to explore the outdoors. From calm lakes to rushing rapids, there is something for everyone in Iowa.

The vastness of the Hawkeye State offers kayakers plenty of opportunities to explore. From the Mississippi River in the east to the Missouri River in the west, there are many unique places to paddle.

In this guide, we’ll take you to some of the most popular kayaking spots in Iowa, where you’ll find calm waters, beautiful scenery, and paddling adventures you’ll never forget.

Most Popular Kayaking Spots in Iowa by Lakes and River

Whether it’s a leisurely paddle down the Des Moines River or a thrilling journey down the Cedar River, kayakers will have no shortage of exciting waterways to explore.

Lake Macbride

Lake Macbride

Nestled in the rolling hills of eastern Iowa, Lake Macbride is a popular destination for kayakers and other outdoor enthusiasts. The lake is over 1,000 acres in size, and its winding shoreline offers plenty of scenic paddling routes. Visitors to the lake can also enjoy activities like swimming, fishing, and boating.

Location and Size

Nestled in the rolling hills of Eastern Iowa, Lake Macbride is an idyllic lake that stretches for nearly 2,000 acres. Its vast size offers visitors and locals alike an opportunity to explore and experience the beauty of nature. The lake is surrounded by towering trees, lush green grass, and a wide variety of wildlife.

Its expansive shoreline provides countless opportunities for fishing, swimming, and kayaking. The lake is a perfect spot for a day of relaxation or a weekend getaway. A day at Lake Macbride is sure to be memorable, with its peaceful setting and stunning views.

Kayaking Routes

Nestled in the lush, rolling hills of Iowa, Lake Macbride is a popular destination for kayakers from near and far. Its winding, tree-lined shoreline provides a unique and scenic escape for paddlers.

The lake is divided into two distinct sections, the larger North Bay and the smaller South Bay, which provide kayakers with two distinct routes to explore. From the North Bay, winding coves provide an opportunity to observe wildlife and take in the lake’s stunning scenery. Kayakers can also paddle through the lake’s many marshy areas, where they can observe birds and other wildlife in their natural habitat.

The South Bay is a bit more challenging and offers kayakers opportunities to navigate through shallow water and around several large islands. Here, paddlers can explore a more remote and secluded area of the lake, and experience some of the lake’s most stunning views.

Kayakers can also take in the lake’s abundance of plants and wildlife, including beavers, otters, and several species of fish. No matter the route, kayakers will enjoy exploring Lake Macbride’s unique landscape and diverse wildlife.

Popular Activities

Nestled in the rolling hills of northeast Iowa, Lake Macbride is a tranquil getaway for those looking to escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. A popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, the lake offers a variety of activities for visitors to enjoy.

The lake’s quiet waters, sandy beaches, and winding channels offer the perfect environment for a variety of watersports. Canoeing, kayaking, and paddleboarding are all popular activities, with several routes to explore. Fishing is also a popular activity, with a variety of species available. Visitors can also take advantage of the park’s many trails, which lead through the surrounding forests and along the lake’s shores.

The lake also offers a variety of recreational activities for visitors to enjoy. From swimming and sunbathing to beach volleyball and sandcastle building, the lake’s many sandy beaches provide the perfect setting for a day of fun in the sun.

Visitors can also take advantage of the park’s picnic areas and grills, which provide the perfect spot for a mid-afternoon cookout. With so many activities to choose from, Lake Macbride is the perfect destination for a fun-filled day of adventure.

Rathbun Lake

Rathbun Lake

Rathbun Lake, located in Appanoose County, Iowa, is the largest lake in the state; its expansive shoreline covers an impressive 11,000 acres. The lake’s calm waters provide the perfect backdrop for kayakers seeking a serene adventure, with routes ranging from leisurely loops to ambitious multi-day endeavors. Anglers, campers, swimmers, and birdwatchers also flock to Rathbun Lake, where a world of nature-based activities awaits.

Location and Size

Leaving the peacefulness of Lake Macbride, the journey continues to Rathbun Lake. Located in the state of Iowa, Rathbun Lake is the largest lake in the state. With an area of almost 11,000 acres, the lake provides plenty of space for outdoor enthusiasts.

Its waters are fed by the Chariton and Appanoose Rivers and are known for their clarity and beauty. The shoreline is adorned with a mix of rocky cliffs, sandy beaches, and wooded areas. It is a picturesque sight to behold.

The lake is ideal for kayak excursions. With many inlets and coves, the lake offers plenty of interesting routes to explore. The lake is the perfect place for a leisurely day on the water, with plenty of wildlife and stunning views.

Kayaking Routes

Leaving the tranquility of Lake Macbride, the next destination for kayakers is the majestic Rathbun Lake. Kayakers will be welcomed to the lake by its spacious shoreline, which offers a variety of routes and perspectives. The lake spans 32,000 acres of the south-central Iowa landscape, creating an ideal location for a day of kayaking.

The vast size of Rathbun Lake provides something for everyone. For more experienced kayakers, the lake provides the perfect opportunity to paddle from one end to the other and explore the shoreline as they go. The area is home to a number of coves and inlets to explore, and the lake often has calm waters so paddling is easy.

For those looking for a less challenging route, there are plenty of smaller coves and inlets that offer a more sheltered route and a chance to take in the beauty of the lake. No matter the route chosen, Rathbun Lake offers a tranquil experience of nature’s beauty.

Popular Activities

Rathbun Lake is an ideal destination for those seeking a variety of outdoor recreation activities. Situated in south central Iowa, and covering approximately 11,000 acres, it is the second-largest lake in the state. Popular activities at Rathbun Lake include fishing, boating, swimming, camping, and hiking.

The lake offers a range of activities for all ages; from swimming and fishing for the young ones to hiking and camping for the more adventurous. Visitors can try their hand at wakeboarding, waterskiing, or jet skiing, or rent kayaks and canoes to explore the shores.

For those who prefer to stay dry, the lake boasts an array of trails for biking and walking. Whether you prefer the quiet solitude of a nature hike or the thrill of water sports, Rathbun Lake has something for everyone.

Clear Lake

Clear Lake

Clear Lake is situated in northern California, nestled among rolling hills and surrounded by lush greenery. It has a surface area of over 68 square miles, making it the largest natural freshwater lake in California. Kayakers flock to the lake to explore its miles of winding inlets, islands, and bays. Popular activities include swimming, fishing, and stand-up paddleboarding.

Location and Size

Leaving the crystal waters of Rathbun Lake behind, Clear Lake is the next destination to visit. A short drive away, Clear Lake is a small landlocked lake nestled in a rural area. Its tranquil setting offers a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Its size is no more than two miles long and a mile wide.

Its shallow waters make it an ideal setting for kayaking, as it offers plenty of opportunities for exploration. The lake is lined with heavily wooded banks, and the surrounding area is filled with lush greenery. The area is tranquil and serene, and visitors can spend hours admiring the beauty of the natural landscape. On a clear day, the sun’s rays glisten off the lake’s surface, creating a picturesque view.

Kayaking Routes

Moving on from Rathbun Lake, Clear Lake offers some of the best kayaking routes in the area. With plenty of coves and inlets, the lake provides a perfect setting for kayaking with friends and family. Kayaking routes vary in difficulty, offering something for everyone from beginners to experienced paddlers.

For a short route, try paddling around the lake’s coves. This route offers stunning views of the lake and is great for a relaxed afternoon paddle. The coves offer plenty of opportunities to stop take a break and explore the natural surroundings. With plenty of wildlife to observe, the coves are a great place to get up close to nature.

For more of a challenging route, try paddling around the entire lake. This route offers a full view of the lake and is great for experienced paddlers. With plenty of twists and turns, you’ll be sure to get a full-body workout.

Popular Activities

From the peaceful waters of Rathbun Lake, we now move on to the serene beauty of Clear Lake. Lying in close proximity to Mason City, Clear Lake is a body of water with a rich history. It is a popular destination for a variety of outdoor activities and recreation.

Popular activities at Clear Lake include fishing, boating, swimming, and camping. Anglers can find largemouth bass, walleye, muskie, northern pike, catfish, and panfish here. For those who prefer the speed and thrill of boating, the lake offers a variety of opportunities for sailing, jet skiing, and kayaking.

For the more adventurous, there are guided boat tours that will take you around the lake, giving you the chance to explore the many coves and inlets. Swimming is also a popular activity here, with the waters being calm and clear, and the lake bed being sandy and soft.

On the shore, camping is a popular way to spend time at the lake, with campers having the option of setting up tents or parking their RV’s in the designated area.

Big Creek Lake

Big Creek Lake

Nestled in the rolling hills of the Ozark Mountains, Big Creek Lake is a serene body of water that stretches for over 10 miles. Its calm and clear waters provide visitors with the perfect opportunity to explore its many kayaking routes, and its size attracts a variety of activities such as swimming, fishing, and sailing.

Location and Size

Leaving the tranquil waters of Clear Lake behind, the next stop on our journey is Big Creek Lake. Nestled in a region of lush forestry, Big Creek Lake provides a peaceful and picturesque getaway. Boasting an impressive surface area of 1,400 acres, it is the largest lake in the region.

The lake is a popular destination for fishing, kayaking, and other water sport activities. Its crystal-clear waters and sandy shores provide a stunning backdrop for outdoor recreation.

The lake is surrounded by a variety of wildlife, from deer and eagles to beavers and ospreys. Whether you’re looking for a quiet fishing spot or an adrenaline-filled water sports adventure, Big Creek Lake has something for everyone.

Kayaking Routes

Unlike the calm waters of Clear Lake, Big Creek Lake is the perfect place for experienced kayakers looking for a thrill. The lake is surrounded by rocky coves and steep cliffs, making it the perfect place for exploring and navigating. Kayakers will find a wide range of kayaking routes across the lake, ranging from short and long trips.

The most popular route for kayakers is the loop trip. This route takes kayakers around the shoreline of the lake, offering breathtaking views of the rugged landscape and the diverse wildlife in the area. Along the route, kayakers can take a break to explore hidden coves and get a closer look at the rocky shoreline. This route is perfect for those looking for a more challenging kayaking experience.

Popular Activities

As the sun rises above Big Creek Lake, the lake glistens and invites visitors to partake in the many activities the lake has to offer. A popular pastime amongst visitors is fishing, and the lake is teeming with bass, catfish, and sunfish. For an even more thrilling experience, visitors can rent a boat for a day of tubing, skiing, and wakeboarding.

The lake also offers excellent opportunities for those looking to take a leisurely kayaking route. The natural beauty of Big Creek Lake draws visitors from all around, and the calm waters are perfect for a peaceful kayak journey. Other popular activities include swimming, bird watching, and picnicking.

During the summer months, the lake comes alive with the lively sound of laughter and fun. Whether visitors are looking for an exciting day of activities or a tranquil day spent in nature, Big Creek Lake has something for everyone to enjoy.

Saylorville Lake

Saylorville Lake

Saylorville Lake is located in Iowa, nestled within the rolling hills of the state. Spanning 14,000 acres, it provides an ample expanse of water and shoreline for visitors to explore. Kayaking is a popular activity, with routes ranging from leisurely shoreline glides to more challenging offshore excursions. Popular activities include fishing, camping, and swimming, providing a variety of experiences for all ages.

Location and Size

Continuing on from Big Creek Lake, Saylorville Lake is located north of the Des Moines metropolitan area in the state of Iowa. Spanning approximately 14,000 acres, Saylorville Lake is the fourth largest lake in the state and is fed by the Des Moines River.

The lake is surrounded by a picturesque landscape and is known for its diverse wildlife. Visitors can spot deer, bald eagles, and a variety of other birds and animals. The lake is also home to a variety of fish, including bass, crappie, and walleye.

Saylorville Lake is the perfect spot for a variety of outdoor activities, such as fishing, swimming, camping, and boating. With its stunning views and wealth of activities, Saylorville Lake is a natural oasis for outdoor enthusiasts.

Kayaking Routes

Leaving the serene waters of Big Creek Lake behind, the next destination is Saylorville Lake, a great place for kayaking and other exciting outdoor activities. With its sprawling 33,000 acres, the lake offers numerous kayaking routes to explore the diverse wildlife and scenery.

The lake has multiple arms that provide several long, winding kayaking routes. The Des Moines River arm offers a scenic journey that goes through the Saylorville Wildlife Refuge, which is home to various birds and small mammals. On the northern end is the Skunk River arm that is full of surprises.

As you paddle along the river, you may come across an array of wildlife, including beavers, river otters, and deer. Paddling down the lake’s eastern side, you will be amazed by the various islands that can be explored.

Kayaking at Saylorville Lake offers a peaceful journey, with plenty of opportunities to enjoy the beautiful surroundings. Whether you take the time to explore the hidden islands or just leisurely paddle down the river arm, you are sure to have an enjoyable experience.

Popular Activities

Leaving the calm waters of Big Creek Lake behind, Saylorville Lake is the next destination for outdoor adventurers. Located just north of Des Moines, the lake is surrounded by rolling hills and lush green prairie grass. Popular activities at Saylorville Lake include swimming, kayaking, fishing, camping, and hiking.

Visitors often flock to the lake for its tranquil waters and stunning views. Swimmers can enjoy a refreshing dip in the lake, while kayakers can explore the many coves and inlets, or take a leisurely paddle around the lake’s perimeter. Fishermen can cast their lines in search of walleye, catfish, and other game fish.

For those wishing to stay overnight, there are several campgrounds located along the lake’s shoreline. Finally, hikers can traverse the many trails that wind their way through the woodlands. It is no surprise that Saylorville Lake continues to be a popular destination for those looking for a day of outdoor fun.

Cedar River

Cedar River

The Cedar River is an ideal destination for nature lovers of all levels. Spanning 120 miles through Washington and parts of Oregon, its location and size offer a variety of kayaking routes and popular activities for visitors to enjoy. From exploring the diverse wildlife to taking in the stunning views of the river, there is something for everyone.

Location and Size

Following Saylorville Lake, the Cedar River provides another beautiful natural area for visitors to explore. This river stretches from northeast Iowa to the Mississippi River and is surrounded by lush forests and rolling hills. As the longest tributary of the Iowa River, the Cedar River flows through several different counties, offering a variety of landscapes for visitors to take in.

The size of the Cedar River varies between different parts of its journey. In some areas it is wide and slow-moving, while in other areas it is narrow and fast-moving. The banks of the river are generally forested with hardwood trees, creating a tranquil atmosphere for visitors. In addition, the surrounding landscape is dotted with wildlife, providing an opportunity to observe nature in its natural habitat.

Kayaking Routes

Leaving Saylorville Lake behind, the Cedar River beckons with its inviting kayaking routes. Paddling along the Cedar River meanders through the Iowa countryside, offering a variety of views and experiences. The river’s gentle current makes it ideal for kayaking and canoeing.

The Cedar River offers several routes that meander through the countryside, taking kayakers past rolling hills, farms, and small towns. Trees line the banks of the river, providing shade and a serene atmosphere. The river is deep enough for kayakers to encounter fish, and the occasional beaver or muskrat.

Through the trees, kayakers will get glimpses of the wildlife, including deer, herons, and bald eagles. While paddling, kayakers will also come across impressive sandstone cliffs, and enjoy the beauty of the wildflowers and local flora. Whether taking a leisurely tour or a more challenging route, the Cedar River offers a peaceful and enjoyable kayaking experience.

Popular Activities

Leaving the calm waters of Saylorville Lake behind, the Cedar River is just a short drive away, offering a host of exciting activities for outdoor enthusiasts. Popular activities along this river include fishing, camping, canoeing, and kayaking with friends and family.

The Cedar River is a perfect place for kayaking, as it is full of twists and turns, and offers a multitude of routes to explore. Kayakers can take in the peaceful sights of the trees and wildlife that line the banks of the river, or make a short trip out to the sandbars and islands in the river for a picnic.

The river is also a popular spot for anglers, who can cast their lines from the calm waters of the river and catch a variety of fish. Canoeing and tubing are also popular activities along the Cedar River, with plenty of places to stop and take in the sights along the way.

Iowa Great Lakes

Iowa Great Lakes

Located in northwestern Iowa, the Iowa Great Lakes are a popular destination for outdoor recreation. Boasting over 14,000 acres of water, visitors can explore the area by kayaking along the routes that wind around the many coves and inlets. Popular activities include fishing, swimming, and tubing, as well as hunting and camping in the nearby woodlands.

Location and Size

The vast landscape of Iowa stretches far beyond the Cedar River, making way for the Iowa Great Lakes. Framed by rolling hills and lush meadows, the five interconnected lakes of Okoboji, Big Spirit, West Okoboji, East Okoboji, and Minnewashta provide a picturesque backdrop to many outdoor activities. Measuring in at a total of 7,000 acres of water, the Iowa Great Lakes are a popular destination for swimming, fishing, and kayaking.

Kayaking Routes

Leaving the tranquil waters of the Cedar River behind, one can find an even more adventurous kayaking experience at the Iowa Great Lakes. This chain of lakes, located in the northwest corner of the state, is the perfect place to explore by kayak.

The lakes are connected by a network of waterways, providing kayakers with plenty of routes to explore. From the depths of Big Spirit Lake to the narrow channels of Little Spirit Lake, the area offers a wide variety of routes for every skill level. In some areas, the lakes are lined with towering willows and cattails, while other areas feature large expanses of open water, giving kayakers plenty of room to maneuver.

No matter what route you choose, the Iowa Great Lakes are sure to provide you with a unique and memorable kayaking experience. With its beautiful scenery and variety of routes, this area is the ideal destination for any kayaker.

Popular Activities

Leaving behind the Cedar River, it’s time to explore the Iowa Great Lakes! Spanning over five thousand acres, the Great Lakes provide an array of activities for visitors of all ages. An especially popular activity is kayaking, as the expansive waterways offer a variety of routes for both beginner and experienced kayakers.

If you’re looking for a relaxing kayaking experience, the Spirit Lake Marina offers a guided kayak tour that takes visitors on a journey through the lake’s crystal clear waters. Alternatively, if you’re a thrill-seeker and want some excitement, the East Okoboji Lake provides a wild and wonderful adventure. From the calm and peaceful shoreline to the wind-whipped open waters, you’ll find something to satisfy all of your kayaking needs.

No matter what route you choose, you’re sure to have an unforgettable experience. With the sun beaming down on you and the gentle sound of the waves, you’ll be sure to find some peace and tranquility. So, make sure to pencil in a trip to the Iowa Great Lakes – you won’t regret it!

Des Moines River

Des Moines River

The Des Moines River is a mighty, winding river that flows through the heart of Iowa. Spanning 286 miles from its source in Minnesota to its confluence in the Mississippi, it offers numerous kayaking routes and activities to explore. Popular activities include bird watching, fishing, and canoeing, while kayakers can choose from a variety of challenging routes.

Location and Size

Moving away from the Iowa Great Lakes, the Des Moines River is the largest river located entirely within the state of Iowa. It begins at the Big Sioux River near Sioux Rapids, then flows southward through the state and empties into the Mississippi River at Keokuk.

This mighty river is approximately 525 miles long and is the chief tributary of the Mississippi River. As the second longest river in the state, it is the perfect spot for those wanting to explore its winding waterways.

Kayaking Routes

Leaving the Iowa Great Lakes behind, the Des Moines River is the perfect spot for a kayaking adventure. Winding its way through the heart of the Midwest, the Des Moines River offers a variety of kayaking routes for all levels of experience.

For a leisurely paddle, a great choice is the route from Saylorville Lake to the downtown area of Des Moines. This route offers a mix of calm and fast-moving waters, allowing kayakers to get a feel for the river and take in the beauty of the lush Iowa scenery. The highlight of the trip is the spectacular view of the downtown skyline, with the Capitol building rising up in the distance.

For the more adventurous, an exciting trip is the route from the confluence of the Des Moines and Raccoon Rivers to the Saylorville Dam. This route features a mix of faster-moving waters, offering a thrilling ride. Experienced kayakers will enjoy the twists and turns of this route, with the added bonus of a great view of the dam as you paddle towards it.

Popular Activities

Leaving behind the sandy shores and calm waters of the Iowa Great Lakes, the Des Moines River winds through the heart of Iowa, offering a variety of exciting activities for adventurers. Popular activities along the Des Moines River include fishing, biking, and camping.

Fishing is a popular activity along the Des Moines River, with anglers hauling in the likes of channel catfish, flathead catfish, walleye, sauger, and smallmouth bass. The river is also a great spot for bird watching, with numerous species of wading birds, ducks, geese, and songbirds flocking to its banks.

Biking enthusiasts also flock to the Des Moines River, as the river provides the perfect opportunity for a leisurely ride. Visitors can bike along the numerous trails that line the Des Moines River, taking in the stunning scenery as they go. Campers, too, are drawn to the Des Moines River, as its many campgrounds provide a peaceful respite from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Shell Rock River

Shell Rock River

The Shell Rock River is located in Iowa, running through several counties and forking into two branches. Its size makes it an ideal spot for kayaking, with routes ranging from early-morning paddles to long-distance trips. Popular activities on the river include fishing, swimming, and bird-watching.

Location and Size

Swirling away from the Des Moines River, the Shell Rock River begins in the northern parts of Winnebago County, Iowa. Its path takes it through the counties of Floyd, Butler, and Bremer before joining the Cedar River in the town of Janesville. Spanning a total of approximately 140 miles, the Shell Rock River is a sizable tributary of the Cedar River.

The river’s source is a spring-fed lake in the northern regions of Winnebago County. From here, the river slowly winds its way past the winding roads of Butler County, where it is fed by multiple creeks and streams, before flowing through Bremer County and finally ending at the Cedar River.

Along the way, the Shell Rock River provides many opportunities for kayaking and canoers, with some of the most breathtaking scenery in the Midwest.

Kayaking Routes

Leaving the Des Moines River behind, the next exciting kayak adventure awaits on the Shell Rock River. This river is a tributary of the Upper Iowa River and winds through the picturesque hills of northern Iowa. Kayakers will want to take advantage of the gorgeous scenery that this river has to offer.

The Shell Rock River is a perfect place for kayakers to explore, with several stretches of the river ranging from 3 to 10 miles long. Whether one is looking for a leisurely paddle in the sun or a more challenging journey on the rapids, there is a route that will meet each individual’s needs.

The most popular route is the 7-mile stretch between Shell Rock and Clarksville. This route is ideal for novice kayakers as it has some mild rapids and allows for ample time to take in the breathtaking views of the green hills and bluffs.

The river is also full of wildlife, so you’re sure to spot a few birds, some deer, and maybe even a beaver. Advanced kayakers can take on the 10-mile stretch from Clarksville to Greene, which offers a bit more of a challenge with some faster rapids.

Popular Activities

Moving from the Des Moines River to the Shell Rock River, visitors of all ages are sure to find something to enjoy. Popular activities on the Shell Rock River include fishing, tubing, and swimming. Many people enjoy fishing the river for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, bluegill, and northern pike.

The river is also a great spot for tubing, with many people setting off from the public access points and floating downstream. Swimming is another popular activity on the Shell Rock River, with visitors often gathering to bask in the sun and enjoy the serene waters. For those who prefer to relax, there are several spots along the river where visitors can set up chairs and enjoy the scenery.

Red Rock Reservoir

Red Rock Reservoir

Located in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains in New York, Red Rock Reservoir is an expansive glacial lake that spans over 3,000 acres. The winding shoreline makes it a perfect destination for kayakers looking to explore the area, boasting a variety of routes that vary in difficulty. Along the lake, visitors can enjoy popular activities such as fishing, swimming, and boating.

Location and Size

Continuing along the flowing waters of Iowa, Red Rock Reservoir is the next stop along the way. This area is located in the heart of the state and is a popular destination for outdoor recreation. The reservoir is 11,000 acres in size, with the lake stretching out in all directions, surrounded by lush forests.

It is fed by the Des Moines River, and the surrounding area is made up of rolling hills, providing beautiful views from all angles. With the Des Moines River running through the area, the Red Rock Reservoir provides many opportunities for water recreation.

Kayaking Routes

Continuing along the scenic landscape of Iowa, the Red Rock Reservoir is a must-see destination for kayakers. Set in the rolling hills and lush green fields, the lake is filled with many incredible kayaking routes.

The lake is spread across 6,100 acres and is surrounded by the rugged hills of the Des Moines River Valley. As kayakers explore the lake, they can paddle through winding creeks and narrow channels, and discover hidden islands and coves. Along the way, they can experience the beauty of the lake’s shoreline, from its crystal-clear waters and sandy beaches to its lush forests and deep canyons.

Whether an experienced kayaker or a novice, the Red Rock Reservoir has something for everyone. From the peaceful paddling along the serene shoreline to the exciting exploration of the narrow channels, kayakers can enjoy a variety of routes that will make any trip a memorable one.

Popular Activities

Venturing away from the Shell Rock River, the journey leads towards Red Rock Reservoir. An oasis of calm and serenity, the lake is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Popular activities include swimming, fishing, and boating.

Visitors can enjoy the beauty of the lake while fishing on the banks or paddling around the lake in a kayak or canoe. The lake is stocked with a variety of fish, including bass, catfish, and trout. It is also a great spot for swimming, with the lake’s shoreline providing plenty of shallow areas for wading.

The lake is also a popular spot for recreational boaters, with plenty of opportunities for a leisurely cruise or a thrilling ride. Visitors can bring their own boats or rent a pontoon boat and take in the lake’s natural beauty. With the lake’s crystal-clear waters, breathtaking scenery, and abundant wildlife, it is a perfect destination for a day trip or a weekend away.

Conclusion

Iowa’s lakes, rivers, and reservoirs offer a variety of kayaking experiences. From the crystal-clear waters of Clear Lake to the calm and peaceful Cedar River, Iowa is a great place for kayakers of all skill levels.

With a variety of kayaking spots, from the Iowa Great Lakes to the Shell Rock River, kayaking in Iowa is a great way to enjoy the natural beauty of the state.

For those seeking a thrilling adventure, the rapids of the Red Rock Reservoir provide the perfect challenge. No matter the experience you are looking for, Iowa has a spot for you.

Iowa Kayaking spots: The Upper Iowa River (Kendallville, Bluffton, and Malanaphy Springs)