Thursday, July 24, 2014

Saylorville Lake

Our next stop was at Saylorville Lake, a Corps of Engineers campground.  The COE campgrounds are always fantastic, but we did wonder what happened to the trail that was supposed to be here.

Now we've already seen hail, wind, and fire damage, and by the time we got halfway across Iowa, we were seeing some flooding.  Sad as that is, I would think that, give a choice, the farmers would rather lose a small part of their field, as opposed to experiencing the dust bowl we've heard about in Oklahoma and Texas.

Saylorville Lake was 41 1/2 feet above normal and the amount of water being released through the dam was pretty impressive.

One day we loaded the bikes in the back of the car and took off to Madrid to bike the High Trestle Trail, a paved rails-to-trails with a special bridge.

Under this overpass, someone had painted a really cool mural.  Unfortunately, there was no way to take the whole thing.

After a couple of miles, Ron wondered, is this it?  Nope, not spectacular enough.

THIS is it.  Dedicated in April 2011, the bridge is part of a 25 mile rails-to-trails bike path.

The steel cribbings are to commemorate coal mining, historically a major industry in the area.

Technically, the bridge is not a trestle, despite the name.  The concrete piers are from the railroad bridge that was built in 1971 to replace the 1912 trestle.  The bridge is 1/2 mile long and 130 feet above the river.

We continued another few miles to Woodward before returning for a total of 11.6 miles.  Wimps that we are, we were ready to stop.


  1. Engineers really need to figure out how to get all that extra water out to California and the southwest. 11.5 miles - definitely wimps. lol

  2. Looks like fishing from the bridge would be interesting.

  3. Very impressive bridge and a nice 25 mile flat ride. Great.

  4. That bridge almost makes you dizzy just to look at it. And that's now a good thing when you're riding a bike over it... ;c)

  5. How cool! I can't believe it's that close to Ames and I've never seen it.

  6. Very cool looking bridge! And 11.6 miles sounds like a pleasant ride.

  7. Madrid. John has family in Madrid and we have been there many times. Didn't know about the bike trail, though. Will have to check it out next time.

  8. I know we could use some of those flood waters here in TX. The area we're in is now under level two water restrictions ... which means watering only one day a week on Fridays.

  9. That has to be the coolest bridge I've ever seen!