Joe Reasoner Dam


River/Stream: Des Moines River, West Fork

Location: Humboldt, Humboldt County
        Latitude: 42.726752
        Longitude: -94.229834
        Click here to view an aerial map of the dam.

Built: 1912

Owner: Humboldt County Conservation Board

Height: 15 feet

Length: 300 feet

Hazards: drowning, height

Warning Signs:

Portage: There is a boat ramp just above the dam. Portage for about a half mile along the Cottonwood Trail and put in below the rock dam across from the power plant. This dam will tear the bottom out of your boat. -- Gerry Rowland

Comments: obvious impoundment


Fatalities 1

  • May 6, 2006 - angler Michael Milligan

Incident Report:

Officials said 50-year-old Michael Mulligan of Humboldt may have fallen in the water at the Harry Reasoner Dam on the West Fork of the Des Moines River and drowned. He was reported missing Saturday morning after he was last seen fishing near the dam.

Someone called 9-1-1 after finding his fishing tackle and vehicle near the dam. Crews spent much of Saturday and Sunday searching for Mulligan, including dive teams from Story and Polk counties.


Photos courtesy of Dave Hillman (river at a very low flow)