The Great Outdoors of Iowa City

Put Netflix on pause, get off the couch, and step outside! There is a whole world out there, and enjoying its many activities can be fun and fulfilling. Here is a small list of outdoor suggestions in the Iowa City area.

Coralville Lake Area

Coralville Lake is a one-stop-shop for an outdoor adventurer. Specifically, this lake is a reservoir plugged up by the Coralville Dam. Sure, it’s man made, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. Here are a just a few things to try at Coralville Lake:

Coralville Res Beach-- Paradise in the middle of Iowa. This beach is small and simple, but that is part of its beauty. People in Iowa aren’t usually attuned to white sand beaches or glimmering turquoise waters. So the one hundred yard long dark sand beach is a perfect destination during the sweat-dripping days of summer. “The Res” rests in the shadows of the rocky Coralville Dam, and plays host to flocks of college kids during the warm seasons. Admission is $1 per person and once you’re in, grilling, volleyball, and swimming are all options. It’s a mere five minutes away from downtown Iowa City, so convenience is another attraction.

Camping-- If you want to camp, you got it. Coralville Lake is home to numerous campsites. Three of the most popular are: Sugar Bottom, West Overlook, and Sandy Beach. You can spend an adventurous night with the family, or create a fun camping party with your buddies. Either way, there are many ways to have a good time at these locations.

Turkey Creek-- This is a beautifully kept disc golf course and a nature trail. This 18-hole disc course is long, and comes highly regarded by avid discers.

Fishing-- Anglers have great luck in Coralville Lake, as well as nearby Lake Macbride. If you want to fish, avoid the summer months. Fish in the spring and fall, and be ready to catch buckets of crappie, small and largemouth bass, walleye, bluegill, and even some pike.

All of the previous attractions are relative to the Coralville Dam, and are directly directly adjacent to one another. A walk or short drive is all you need to get from one place to another.

Bike Trails

There are plenty of bike trails in the Iowa City area. The Iowa River Corridor (IRC) trail is the most heavily used. While only six miles long, it connects to most of the city, making it easy to make a pit stop at a store or grab a bite to eat. 

Skate Park

There is something for everyone. Located in Terrell Mill Park directly across from Mayflower dorm, the City Skatepark is available for boarders. It opened ten years ago and is a popular hangout spot. 

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