If you do not know where to go or you want to get connected with people who are heading out, check out the various links on this page. While you may prefer solitude, it is also important to be safe. "Buddy up" while making trips on the water -- especially if you are not as experienced with a new location or paddling in general. Iowa Whitewater Coalition members will generously share experience and knowledge. You will also find that enoying the outdoor wonders with others is quite therapeutic.
Click here to connect with members and friends of Iowa Whitewater on Facebook.
Two resources that pair well together are Nate Hoogeveen's Paddling Iowa guidebook and the U.S. Geological Survey streamflow gauges for Iowa. The book describes lots of trips that you can take on Iowa streams and rivers. It also provides recommendations for water levels that you can check on the USGS website. You definitely do not want to paddle on rivers where the water is too high, and your trip will probably not be very enjoyable if the water is too low.
Before heading out be sure to think about safety. Click here to view paddling safety links. Refer to the Iowa Low Head Dams Reference for important dam safety information and pertinent information about dangerous dams that you might encounter along your river trip.
Check out the Events Calendar page for planned paddler gatherings.
Iowa Whitewater Coalition appreciates the great work performed by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources River Programs Team. There is a lot of good "know before you go" information on the DNR's Canoeing & Kayaking website with emphasis on paddling safety and education. The site also provides access to water trail maps and brochures.
American Whitewater maintains a National Rivers Database that includes a collection of whitewater features in Iowa. The data includes paddler submitted descriptions and photos. The page is also color coded to quickly see what features are currently in good shape for paddling. Click here to see the Streamkeepers information for Iowa.
Central Iowa Paddlers (Des Moines)
Skunk River Paddlers (Ames)