Bodies of water offer endless possibilities to The Amphibian — fishing, swimming, boating, jet skiing, kayaking, water skiing, wading or just water gazing. You might be an amphibian if:

  • You are willing to stand beside/fish in/get in/float on/boat on water if it is under 45 degrees.
  • You can’t be found farther than 100 feet away from a body of water when it is over 60 degrees.
  • You have more life jackets than regular jackets.
  • You secretly wish your nickname was Captain or The Big Fish.

We’ve curated this list of county parks where you can experience all those possibilities… while in Iowa:

1. Wildcat Bluff Park

Urbana, Benton County

Benton County Conservation, Paddling
Photo Courtesy Benton County Conservation Facebook

This park offers access to the Cedar River perfect for fishing, boating and canoeing down the river. Wildcat Bluff also is home to the #1 rated disc golf course in Iowa.

2. Willow Lake Recreation Area

Woodbine, Harrison County

Willow Lake Recreation Area, Woodbine, Iowa
Photo Courtesy Harrison County Conservation Facebook

Willow Lake is a fishing lake with boat ramp access, a fishing pier and swimming beach. Camp sites and rental cabins are also available alongside the lake.

3. Yellow Smoke Park

Denison, Crawford County

Yellow Smoke Park, Denison, Iowa
Photo by Schraeder Photography, Courtesy Yellow Smoke Park Facebook

Yellow Smoke Park includes a 40-acre lake with boat ramp, handicapped accessible fishing pier and swimming beach. Campsites and rental cabins are available with updated shower and bathroom facilities.

4. Meredith Park

Mallard, Palo Alto County

Pocahontas County Conservation
Photo Courtesy Pocahontas County Conservation Facebook

Meredith Park, also known as Plover Pit, is a remote spot for fishing, swimming and camping. A five-acre natural lake is great scenery for a picnic or watching kids play on a new playground made from recycled milk jugs.

5. Lake Miami Park

Lovilia, Monroe County

Lake Miami Park, Lovilia, Iowa

The beautiful 135-acre Lake Miami is the central feature to the park, which also includes a full-service campground, cabins and a nature education center.

6. Central Park

Center Junction, Jones County

Central Park, Center Junction, Iowa

Several fish species call Central Park's recently renovated 25-acre lake home. A playground, swimming beach and volleyball court round out the campground's amenities.