If you are looking to get into the outdoors for some on-the-water social distancing, I have just the place in Iowa for you!

There is a stretch of the Upper Iowa River by Decorah, IA that is just breathtaking. The scenery along this northeastern Iowa trek is comprised of Oak trees, Maples, Pines, and many other varieties of trees that fill the limestone cliffs.

I recently did a float down the Upper Iowa River. We got on the river just northwest of a little town called Bluffton. There are a number of entry points where you can launch your vessel and many places where you can exit the river.

You can design an adventure that lasts from just an hour or much longer if you prefer. If you don't have a canoe or kayak there are many places where you can rent them along with paddles and life vests.

There are also some fine Airbnb accommodations in the area. I recently stayed at The Tuckaway just outside of Decorah. This wonderful Airbnb is in the lower level of a house located in the wooded countryside just minutes from many places where you can launch canoes and kayaks on the Upper Iowa River.

"The Tuckaway" Decorah, Iowa - Ben Davis
"The Tuckaway" Decorah, Iowa - Ben Davis

The hosts of The Tuckaway provided a very comfortable place to stay. The location included a large bedroom and bathroom along with a spacious living room that offered an awesome view of the woods and hills just out of your door. My hosts went to great lengths to sanitize and take precautions making sure I felt safe in these pandemic times. There was a private entrance that allowed me to come and go as I wished. I couldn't recommend them enough.

Plan to pack a lunch, snacks, and beverages. The flow of the river is usually just steady with a couple of riffles that will provide a bit more of an exciting pace. The main thing you'll want to do is prepare to relax and enjoy the amazing vistas.

The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
The Upper Iowa River - Ben Davis
Enter your number to get our free mobile app