10 Best Biking Adventures in Iowa - From Easy to Challenging!
Iowa is a biking paradise, with stunning countryside, rolling hills, and charming towns to explore. If you're looking for a biking adventure, we've got you covered with the 10 best rides in Iowa! From easy and leisurely to challenging and scenic, there's something for everyone.
1. Ride the High Trestle Trail - Difficulty: Easy to Moderate * *
This 25-mile trail outside Des Moines features a breathtaking bridge over the Des Moines River. Illuminated at night, it's a unique experience for all levels of riders. Best time to ride: Spring or Fall.
2. Cycle the Wabash Trace Trail - Difficulty: Easy *
This 63-mile trail runs through the southwest Iowa countryside, passing through charming towns like Malvern and Coin. Best time to ride: Summer or Fall.
3. Explore the Loess Hills - Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult * * *
The hills in western Iowa offer some of the most stunning scenery in the state. Trails include the Wabash Trace Trail and the Council Bluffs Trail System. Best time to ride: Spring or Fall.
4. Bike the Cedar Valley Nature Trail - Difficulty: Easy to Moderate * *
This 52-mile trail passes through several towns in northeast Iowa, offering views of the Cedar River and surrounding countryside. Best time to ride: Summer or Fall.
5. Ride RAGBRAI - Difficulty: Challenging * * * *
This week-long cycling party attracts thousands of riders from around the world.RAGBRAI, which stands for the Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, is the oldest, largest, and longest recreational bicycle touring event in the world. It is a non-competitive, seven-day bicycle ride that traverses the state of Iowa from west to east, covering approximately 420 miles (changes yearly). Come for the entire ride or just pick one day! This ride attracts thousands of cyclists from around the globe, who come to experience the beauty of Iowa's rolling hills, small towns, and rural landscapes. RAGBRAI is known for its festive atmosphere, with riders camping out, enjoying local food and drink, and participating in various activities along the way. It is truly an unforgettable experience for any cycling enthusiast. The ride annually takes place at the end of July.
6. Cycle the Iowa Great Lakes Trail - Difficulty: Easy to Moderate * *
This 28-mile trail runs through the Iowa Great Lakes region, passing through Spirit Lake, Okoboji, and Arnolds Park. Best time to ride: Summer.
7. Bike the Des Moines River Trail - Difficulty: Easy *
This 17-mile trail offers views of the river and the city skyline in Des Moines. Best time to ride: Spring or Fall.
8. Explore the Bridges of Madison County - Difficulty: Moderate * *
The Bridges of Madison County offer a beautiful route through Iowa's rolling hills and countryside. Best time to ride: Spring or Fall.
9. Cycle the Waverly Rail Trail - Difficulty: Easy *
This 10-mile trail passes through several small towns in the northeast Iowa Cedar Valley region. Best time to ride: Summer or Fall.
10. Bike the Trout Run Trail - Difficulty: Easy to Moderate * *
This 11-mile trail in Decorah offers stunning views of the Upper Iowa River and the surrounding hills. Best time to ride: Summer.
Overall, Iowa offers a wide variety of cycling opportunities, ranging from scenic countryside rides to urban adventures. Whether you're a seasoned cyclist or a beginner, there's something for everyone in this beautiful state. So grab your bike, hit the road, and explore all that Iowa has to offer!
NOTE: Thanks to Iowa By Trail! It is the official website of the Iowa Bicycle Coalition, a non-profit organization that promotes safe bicycling in Iowa. The website provides information on trails, events, and advocacy efforts to support cycling in Iowa. Additionally, the website is secure and uses encryption to protect user information.
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