Old Creamery Nature Trail


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Old Creamery Nature Trail Facts

States: Iowa
Counties: Benton, Tama
Length: 15.3 miles
Trail end points: S. K Ave./US 218 (Vinton) and X Ave./Market Rd. (Dysart)
Trail surfaces: Cinder, Crushed Stone, Gravel
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6015673
Trail activities: Mountain Biking, Walking, Cross Country Skiing

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Old Creamery Nature Trail Description

The Old Creamery Nature Trail, running between Vinton and Dysart, is so named for the Old Creamery Theater Company building in Garrison, another tiny farm community through which the trail passes. The gravel trail passes through rural Iowa among cultivated fields and farmsteads. In places stands of mature trees offer shade. At both ends and in the middle (Garrison) the trail passes through rural towns along an abandoned rail corridor now owned and managed by the Benton County Conservation Board. A group of local volunteers helps to maintain the trail.

Parking and Trail Access

In Dysart the trailhead is off Highway 21 and just east of Casey's. In Vinton the trailhead is off Highway 218 just north of Theisen's and ALCO. You can also access the trail in Garrison at the county trunk road V56 near Pine Street and where the trail intersect Hickory/Houston Street.

Old Creamery Nature Trail Reviews

I rode the trail from Vinton to Garrison and return today to get a taste of what it had to offer. The trailhead in Vinton has parking for only about 5 cars, but on street parking in the general vicinity is also available. One drawback is that the parking area is across the highway from the trail's beginning, a lot on the same side as the trail start/finish would be more agreeable. The trail was very flat for the most part, shifting of gears was never a question. The beginning of the trail was rather narrow. (think a country lane) As I headed west from Vinton the trail was wider in some of the farmland sections, while the wooded sections were just a bit narrower. At each entrance to the trail there were signs noting that no motor vehicles or horses were allowed on the trail. However, it seems that equestrians had been using the trail recently, so care is advised, particularly in the wooded sections where it was a little bit darker and more difficult to see what they left behind. As for the surface, the trail was pretty much a worn limestone, with a few short sections of larger gravel. A couple of the bridge crossings could use a little bit of TLC to smooth out the transition from trail to bridge. I ride a hybrid, so the thought of riding over 30 miles on this surface wasn't very appealing. On the roundtrip I encountered 4 other cyclists, and 1 walker, so even on a nice Saturday the trail is lightly used.

Nice trail with lots of trees and farmland.

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