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New Year’s Day hikes to be held in many Iowa state parks

This news story was published on December 19, 2018.
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Information from Iowa DNR

DES MOINES – What’s the best way to spend New Year’s Day? Take a First Day Hike in one of 27 participating Iowa state parks! Hikers can expect to be surrounded by the quiet beauty of nature in winter, and experience spectacular views, beautiful settings and the cultural treasures offered by Iowa’s state parks.

“We are excited to host First Day Hikes again as part of this effort to get people outdoors and into our parks,” said Todd Coffelt, chief of the Iowa DNR’s State Parks Bureau. “These hikes are a great way to get outside, exercise, enjoy nature and welcome the New Year with friends and family.”

In past years, more than 1,200 people began the year in an Iowa state park, hiking more than 1,100 total miles.

Staff and volunteers will lead free, guided First Day Hikes in Iowa’s 27 participating state parks. Some hikes will include wildlife viewing and hot beverages. Hikes will average one to two miles or longer depending on the location. Details about the hikes can be found at To see a comprehensive national map of First Day Hikes, visit Participants are encouraged to share their adventures on social media with #FirstDayHikes or #iowastateparks.

Iowa First Day Hikes will take place at the following state parks:


Big Creek State Park
Dolliver Memorial State Park
Gitchie Manitou State Preserve
Ledges State Park
Pilot Knob State Park
Prairie Rose State Park
Springbrook State Park
Stone State Park

Green Valley State Park
Lake Anita State Park
Waubonsie State Park

Elk Rock State Park
Lacey-Keosauqua State Park
Lake Darling State Park
Lake Wapello State Park
Walnut Woods State Park
Wildcat Den State Park

Bellevue State Park
Cedar Rock State Park
Lake Macbride State Park
Maquoketa Caves State Park
Mines of Spain State Recreation Area
Pikes Peak State Park
Pine Lake State Park
Union Grove State Park
Volga River State Recreation Area
Yellow River State Forest

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