Recreation Trails

Trail Maps


Prairie Farmer Recreation Trail

The Prairie Farmer Recreation Trail stretches from Calmar to Cresco, following the abandoned Milwaukee Railroad line. Walk, jog, or bike along the trail and take in the views of native prairies and woodland wildlife!

PFRT Bikers


Quick Facts

  • Length: 20 miles
  • Surface: Asphalt
  • Hours: Year-round
  • Cities: Calmar, Ridgeway, and Cresco
  • Uses: Biking, hiking, jogging, nature viewing, and cross-country skiing


Access Points/Parking Areas

  • Calmar: Parking and access at intersection of Highway 52 and railroad crossing, just north of Highway 150/52/24 intersection
  • County Highway B16: Parking and access at County Highway B16 and Highway 52 intersection (Spillville turnoff), north of Calmar
  • Ridgeway: Parking at Ridgeway Trailside Park on east edge of town; Snowmobile access begins in Ridgeway and extends to near Cresco
  • Howard-Winneshiek County Line: Parking and access on county road 345th Avenue, approximately 2 miles from Cresco trail terminus
  • Cresco: North side of Highway 9
  • Users may also access the Prairie Farmer Recreational Trail at any road crossing, though parking may not be available


Trout Run Trail


  • The Dug Road section of the Trout Run Trail (between mile markers 10 and 11/0) was severely damaged by heavy rains and flooding in August 2016. It remains closed until further notice. Please respect barricades and do not enter this section. For more information, watch this website, our Facebook page, or call (563) 534-7145. 
  • Due to construction in Trout Run Park/Bowstring Bridge Park, there will be intermittent trail closures/detours of the Trout Run Trail between September 15, 2016 and May 15, 2017. Please click here for additional details.

The scenic Trout Run Trail loop winds through historic and picturesque Decorah and the surrounding area, passing along dikes, abandoned rail beds, and private farmlands. The trail offers views of forested limestone bluffs, rare algific talus slopes, and the beautiful Oneota Valley and Upper Iowa River.

In addition to biking, walking, running, and cross-country skiing opportunities, the trail provides safe, non-motorized access to trout streams, the Upper Iowa River, art pieces, and local parks, campgrounds, restaurants, ice cream shops, and businesses. Try beginning your trip at, or just stopping by, the Decorah Fish Hatchery, home to Siewers Springs (the second largest natural spring in Iowa) and the famous Decorah eagles! Bring along a picnic to enjoy in the new shelter and a fishing pole to try your hand at the trout in the nearby streams and their handicap-accessible points. 

The Trout Run Trail is a popular choice for fundraising runs, walks, and other events. Special event permits are required.


TRTQuick Facts

  • Length: 11 mile loop
  • Surface: Asphalt
  • Hours: Year-round
  • Cities: Decorah
  • Uses: Biking, hiking, running, fishing, nature viewing, cross-country skiing


Access Points/Parking Areas

  • 5th Avenue Bridge: West edge of Decorah off Pulpit Rock Road
  • Will Baker Park: West edge of Decorah off Pulpit Rock Road
  • West Dug Road: East end of Oneota Drive, off Highway 52
  • East Dug Road: West end of Main Street near downtown Decorah100 2896comp
  • Wold Park: Near Sumner Street east of Decorah High School
  • Trout Run Park: East edge of Decorah off Highway 9, near Old Stage and Trout Run roads
  • Trout Run Road: Off Trout Run Road, midway between Highway 9 and Decorah Fish Hatchery
  • Decorah Fish Hatchery: 2325 Siewers Spring Road
  • Highway 9 Bridge: Access from Industrial Lane






Freeport Trail

This 2.75-mile spur off the Trout Run Trail serves as an important connector trail from the village of Freeport to the Trout Run Trail and Decorah. The trail was heavily supported by the residents of Freeport who were interested in a safe, accessible,non-motorized route for reaching Decorah. Interested citizens took the lead in private fundraising that proved to be an important component in the overall funding of the trail and associated road improvements.


Quick Facts

 Length: 2-mile spur

  • Surface: Concrete
  • Hours: Year-round, partially groomed/plowed
  • Cities: Decorah and Freeport
  • Uses: Biking, hiking, running


Access Points/Parking Areas

  • Wal-Mart Parking Lot: Off Old Stage Road
  • Freeport Park: 252nd Ave and River Road, Freeport




Maps and Further Information

Click here for a map of the Trout Run Trail.

Click here for a joint map of the Trout Run and Prairie Farmer trails.

Click here for further information on the Trout Run Trail.

Click here for a map of groomed cross-country ski trails around Decorah.

Think Safety! Click here for information on safely riding bikes on streets or at road crossings.

Click here for the interactive Iowa Transportation Map for Bicyclists. 

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