Experiencing Two Army Corps of Engineers Campgrounds.
Over the last week, we were able to experience two Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds in two different states. First, we stayed at the Indian Creek Campground on Mark Twain Lake. The campground is located near Monroe City, MO and about 45 minutes from Hannibal, MO. The lake was created when the Clarence Cannon Dam was built across the Salt River. Construction on the damn started in 1966, but wasn’t completed until 1983. In addition to power generation, the 18,000 acre lake provides flood control for the Salt River valley and all of the obvious water recreation activities.
We were only able to spend a couple of days at Indian Creek and we didn’t have much time to enjoy all that Mark Twain State Park had to offer. We used Indian Creek as a home base to explore Hannibal for a day, and we took one short hike from the back of our site to get some pictures of the Lake. It’s a very quiet campground during the week. We are finding it’s a common theme - we are practically alone in these beautiful locations until Friday afternoon. On Fridays and Saturdays the parks fill with families out to enjoy the swimming, fishing, boating, jet skiing, and kayaking that these man made lakes provide.
In Iowa City we were able to spend 3 days at the West Overlook Campground on Coralville Lake. The artificial lake was created in 1958 by the creation of the Coralville Damn on the Iowa River just upstream of the cities of Coralville and Iowa City. When we arrived at the Campground on Thursday afternoon we were the only campers on our loop. By Friday afternoon the entire campground was filled with families. It’s nice to experience the quiet, but it’s also fun to see the area come alive with families enjoying the lake during the day and sitting around the campfires in the evening. Suze and I didn’t camp with our children when they were young, but it’s obviously a great way for families to connect and enjoy the outdoors.
We’ll search out more Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds in the future. They are in beautiful, remote locations with plenty of water recreation available. These two particular campgrounds provide 30amp power and sites large enough for almost any sized RV. Now we are off to our first WI State Campground - Nelson Dewey State Park! We’ll have an update from there soon.