Sandpiper Recreation Area is a day-use facility located on the 26,000-acre Saylorville Lake Project, which stretches over 50 miles up the Des Moines River Valley. The lake provides a wide variety of recreational activities, including boating, swimming, fishing, hiking and hunting. Natural Features: Sandpiper is situated in a broad, open area on the northeast side of the lake. Dense timber stands surround the recreation area, but shade is limited within the site. Wildlife is abundant throughout the project. White-tailed deer, turkeys, pheasants, waterfowl, and other small game animals roam the lands around the lake. Recreation: Visitors come to Saylorville Lake for its great boating, sailing, water skiing, windsurfing and swimming opportunities. Anglers fish for walleye, wiper, largemouth bass, catfish, crappie and northern pike. The paved Neal Smith Trail winds 24 miles from Des Moines to Big Creek State Park and connects the campgrounds on the east side of the lake. It is designated as a National Recreation Trail and is used for biking, hiking, jogging, walking and in-line skating. Facilities: This day-use area contains one large group picnic shelter that can accommodate up to 500 people. Amenities include water and electric hookups, flush toilets, a playground, large beach, boat ramp and access to hiking and biking trails. A marina is nearby.
The individual sites are quite spacious. They are paved and level and can accommodate large rigs. We have never looked for a pull-through site, we back in with our 37' Allegro Bus, so I cannot comment on them. There are several group camping loops that can accommodate small and large groups of campers. The campground, including showers and restrooms, is clean and well-maintained. There are beautiful views of the lake in the Cornflower loop. There are playgrounds for the children and plenty of space for them to run and play. Saylorville Reservoir has a marina, with a restaurant/bar. We have to keep our motorhome in storage, so we use Prairie Flower campground as our staging area when we get ready for an away trip. We can get in an out with food and whatever else we need to take with us, and we can utilize the dump station before leaving. We also like to go camping there mid-week and enjoy the quiet time.
This quickly became one of our favorite close to home spots. Sites are large and there is plenty of space between sites. We had a concrete pad with a picnic table and fire pit with grill grate. Most are back in sites, but once settled we had a gorgeous view of the lake and sunsets. Restrooms were clean and dump stations were easily accessible. This is now our go to spot when we want to camp but stay close to home!
Spacious spots. Some are concrete pads. Near a lake. Playgrounds. Very clean shower houses. We are camp here often.
We were sent to this campground b/c our reservation for bob shetler campground was cancelled b/c of flooding. We were told @ the gate we had to pay since it was a different campground & would be reimbursed for our reservation. Thinking we would be in a "campsite" we were told to pull in behind last camper & park were there was a spot. We pulled into a round about that you just parked on the side of the road with no privacy & no room for any vehicles to go around with our camper slides out. I have never in my life see a campsite like this. The RV that pulled behind us parked so close we could not open our garage door. Im trying to post a video but the add button on this site does nothing.
Prairie Flower is run by the Army Corps of Engineers. It is huge! There are so many campsites that when it is full it can become a maze. It is clean and well maintained with lots to do at Saylorville Lake. There are several Recreation areas nearby that don't allow camping, making Prairie Flower a perfect place to stay. By the way, the campground is full of wild flowers, thus the name Prairie Flower.
The Prarie Flower campground at Saylorville Lake is an open, flat grassy campground near wooded trails around the US Army Corps of Engineers land. The campground itself is easy, in & out, with great & plentiful restrooms. The proximity to the trail system is what makes this friendly to cyclists. The trail can take you to the marina, where there is a burger shack style restaurant.