Did you know that Wilson Island was actually named after former Governor George Wilson? No? Now do you! Just one of the things you will learn when you visit the Wilson Island State Park - because it's more than a park - it's part of history!
It came into existence around 1900 as just an island sandbar. Now, it is 544 acres of dense cottonwood stands. If you are looking for a place to have a family day out in seclusion and nature, this is your place to be!
The abundance of wildlife is one of the things you will notice first when you get to the park. Perhaps it's a deer grazing in the park fields, or very loud snow geese flying low overhead in the fall. Have you ever seen a Bald Eagle? They are often seen perched in the tall cottonwoods in winter, and those loving a bit of mushroom hunting - you better come visit in the spring!
Want to hear another cool fact? Early history points to Lewis & Clark actually camping on this part of the Missouri River in 1804 as part of their historic trip to the Pacific! Pretty incredible!
But of course, we know you want to hear some of the activities you and the family can do during your day out at Wilson Island State Park! First, you can't have a day at the park without a picnic! There is a picnic area along the shorelines, and great to eat lunch as you enjoy the wildlife passing you by!
With over 5 miles of trails, you will be entertained both summer and winter. Form hiking, to snowmobiling and cross-country skiing - even mountain biking. Certainly will keep those active kids happy!
Feeling like you need to cool down? There is half a mile trail along the shoreline as well as a boat ramp which is great access to the river itself. If you do want to fish, you will need a license.
Don't forget your camera - you might be in for a treat!
The park can be found at 21801 Campground Lane in Missouri Valley, Iowa.Get directions
The park do it's best to look after the area and the wildlife that calls it home, but help them out by picking up after yourself to keep it clean!
Make sure you take a picnic lunch with those picnic spots - and perhaps you might have some deer company as you eat!
If you do fancy camping, there are 125 shaded campsite spaces. It's self check-in on a first come, first serve basis.
Make sure you take water and healthy snacks - always great for those hikes to keep the energy up!
It's a park - there is plenty of room for everyone!
There is a Visitor Center just north of Wilson Island which has information and artifacts.