Raccoon River Valley Trail

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Trail Distance: 89 miles
Time Estimate: 35 h 20 min
Elevation Gain: 66.2 feet
Leash Rule: On Leash
Difficulty: Hard
Parking: Free
Route Type: Point-to-point
Restroom: Limited
Description

Showcasing some of the finest of Iowa's countryside landscapes, the Raccoon River Valley trail stretches out for just under 90 miles, snaking its way through 14 different communities in three counties. The trail follows along an old railroad track that was built in the 1870's to connect the Great Lakes area with Des Moines, meaning that, just like most other rail trails, it is fully paved and features a relatively level grade, providing an easy, but long walk for you and Fido.

Being a long-distance trail, the scenery that you and your pooch will encounter along the way is incredibly diverse. Not only will you pass through patches of woodland, farmland, fields and colorful wildflower meadows, but the small rural communities you walk through will also give you a unique glimpse into daily life in the region.

Each town that you pass through on the Raccoon River Valley Trail has something a little different to offer. The most populated towns are Waukee and Perry, both of which offer food, water, restrooms and more for hikers. Thanks to the popularity of this trail, with over 320,000 hikers traversing it each year, even the smaller towns, from Jamaica to Minburn, offer a wide range of services for those passing through.

For those of you who want to learn more about the diverse terrain you and your pooch are walking through, you will come across a few signposts along your journey. These will teach you more about the landscape around you, from the trees that grow here to the eagles that fly high above. Speaking of trees, the majority of the trail is lined with shady mature trees on both sides, providing plenty of shade for you and Fido.

In order to walk the trail, you will need to first purchase a daily pass or an annual permit. This can be bought using the payment drop boxes at the various trailheads along the way. Whether you decide to use a smaller portion of the trail as an out-and-back walk, or set off on an 89 mile adventure to cover the entire trail, this is a journey that your pooch will definitely have so much fun on. 

Trail Features
Diverse Landscape, Easy Incline
Wildflowers, Scenic
Cautions & Considerations
Keep in mind that this trail is extremely popular with cyclists, and you are likely to encounter quite a few along the route. Several sections of this trail also run parallel with busy roads, so while some parts of the trail may be tranquil and peaceful, you might encounter quite a bit of traffic in other parts.
Address
US-6
Clive, IA 50325
Hours
Mon Sunrise - Sunset
Tue Sunrise - Sunset
Wed Sunrise - Sunset
Thu Sunrise - Sunset
Fri Sunrise - Sunset
Sat Sunrise - Sunset
Sun Sunrise - Sunset
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Address
US-6
Clive, IA 50325
Hours
Mon Sunrise - Sunset
Tue Sunrise - Sunset
Wed Sunrise - Sunset
Thu Sunrise - Sunset
Fri Sunrise - Sunset
Sat Sunrise - Sunset
Sun Sunrise - Sunset