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Six Pine - Backbone State Park

26 Reviews

About This Campground

State Park

Located about an hour’s drive north of Cedar Rapids, Backbone State Park is Iowa’s oldest state park. Established in 1920, it was named for a narrow limestone ridge—the Devil’s Backbone—along the Maquoketa River. At its founding, it was one of the largest state parks in the U.S. to offer camping,…

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  • Drive In
    Park next to your campsite
  • Walk In
    Park in a lot, walk to your campsite

Stay Connected

  • WiFi
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile

Site Types

  • Tent Sites
  • RV Sites
  • Standard (Tent/RV)
  • Dispersed
  • Group
  • Cabins
  • Equestrian


For Campers

  • Market
  • ADA Access
  • Trash
  • Picnic Table
  • Firewood Available
  • Phone Service
  • Reservable
  • Showers
  • Drinking Water
  • Electric Hookups
  • Toilets
  • Alcohol
  • Pets
  • Fires

For Vehicles

  • Sanitary Dump
  • Sewer Hookups
  • Pull-Through Sites
  • 30 amp Hookups
  • Water Hookups
  • Max Length: 40 ft.


26 Reviews of Six Pine - Backbone State Park

Ratings Breakdown

  • 0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 8
  • 15
Kerry M.The Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Aug. 21, 2021

Two campgrounds to enjoy at Backbone State Park

Backbone State Park is unlike any other place in Iowa, having geological features uncommon in Iowa.

There are two campgrounds. I have camped in both:

Modern Campground: This is a large, modern campground with all of the standard amenities found in a modern campground… electric hookups,…

  • Backbone State Park Lake (showing the beach)
  • Trout Stream
  • Richmond Spring (feeds the trout stream)
  • (8) View All
Month of VisitNovember
Tanner H.
Reviewed Jun. 25, 2021

Endless trails, cool cliffs, quiet atmosphere

I have been to Backbone a few times, this spot is one of my friends and I’d favorite. There is no through traffic so it’s quiet. Tons of trails, specifically the spot we camped at was right by the trail so we had easy access. The sites are big so you can camp far back and keep the vehicles at the…

  • overhead footage of backbone state park
Month of VisitNovember
MThe Dyrt PRO User
Reviewed Jun. 1, 2021

Gorgeous state park!

To start off, Backbone State Park is one of the most gorgeous parks I’ve ever visited. It’s so beautiful, with plenty of challenging and scenic trails and lots of wildlife. The only reason I didn’t give it five stars is the campgrounds (we stayed at Six Pines). I’ll go into more detail below.…

  • (6) View All
Month of VisitJune


Six Pine - Backbone State Park is located in Iowa


To the South Gate Entrance South Lake Campground, Cabins, Beach, Office 1.3 miles north out of Dundee on W69. To East Gate Entrance Backbone trail head and picnic area's 1.5 miles north on W69 from South Gate Entrance. To the West Gate Entrance Six Pines Campground, CCC Museum and picnic areas take 187 North from Hwy 20 to C57, Take C57 5 miles East to park entrance. North Gate Entrance Richmond Springs, Auditorium and picnic areas take Hwy 3 East from Strawberry Point. Go North on W68 to North Gate Approximately 2 miles.


1347 129th Street
Dundee, IA 52038


42.61460257 N
91.567572 W

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About This Campground

Located about an hour’s drive north of Cedar Rapids, Backbone State Park is Iowa’s oldest state park. Established in 1920, it was named for a narrow limestone ridge—the Devil’s Backbone—along the Maquoketa River. At its founding, it was one of the largest state parks in the U.S. to offer camping, picnicking and hiking opportunities. Since that time, the park has expanded to 2,100 acres—almost double its original size—and offers even more opportunities for locals and visitors to get outdoors and enjoy some time in nature. Whether it’s wandering the woods, fishing on a quiet creek, lounging by the lake, or just napping in shade under a swinging hammock, there’s something for everyone here. The two campgrounds at Backbone State Park offers 125 campsites for tent and RV campers. The large South Lake Campground has nearly 100 sites, about half with electrical hookups, with flush toilets and showers. The smaller Six Pines Campground has 27 primitive tent sites with vault toilets. Most sites are open and grassy, but there are plenty of shade trees around. Both locations have drinking water faucets and trash receptacles; a dump station is located at the South Lake Campground. The park also offers a few 1- and 2-bedroom cabins for those visiting sans tent or RV; bedding not provided. Many sites and facilities are ADA accessible. A small store in the park sells bait, firewood and some concessions. Reservations are accepted, but some sites are held open for first-come, first-served campers. Seasonal campsite rates range from $6–$16/night; cabins range from $50–$100/night. There are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy at Backbone State Park. The park features several playgrounds, picnic areas, an outdoor auditorium, and a museum. More than 21 miles of multiuse trails explore the woods and waterways within the park. Taking a hike or ride is the best way to see some of the park’s natural rock features, including the Stone Arch, Balance Rock, and the Devil’s Backbone. In winter, many of these trails are open for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and snowmobiling. Swimming, paddling and boating can be enjoyed on Backbone Lake, with kayak and canoe rentals available from the park, and angers can fish for trout on the creek out of Richmond Springs. And rock climbers will find several challenging routes on the park’s many limestone cliffs.

Connection Details

We rate connection speeds from campers like you who submit speed tests with Field Reports.

  • Good- 10+Mbps

    Campers can make calls and send texts & emails, watch an HD movie, play multiplayer games, and more.

  • Fair- 3Mbps-10Mbps

    Campers can make calls, send texts & emails, video chat, stream video, and play online games.

  • Poor- 0Mbps-3Mbps

    Campers might be able check email, send texts, and make calls.

  • Available-

    Campers have been able to connect here but we don’t know the quality of the connection.

  • Unknown-

    Connectivity is not known for this campground.

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