The best EQUESTRIAN camping near
Dawson , IOWA

49 Reviews8 Campgrounds

This map requires WebGL

Please update your web browser or enable WebGL to view the map.

Troubleshooting Info
EXPLORE
The Dyrt App

The #1 Camping App

Camp with confidence with the highest-ranked camping app for both iOS and Android. Search more than 1 million listings, reviews, and tips for campsites across the U.S.

Enter your phone number to get the app.

The Dyrt App The #1 Camping App
Most Recent Dawson Camping Reviews
Wonderful

Great for tent camping, very spacious and grassy sites, clean, grill/fire pit was really very nice. Very clean and modern bathrooms, easy access to water. Hiking trails were well maintained. Can't wait to come again.

Cost Effective, all hook ups,great long term

I stayed at this campground from August until November 13 in my pull behind camper.

Water,gas and Sewer was $15 daily,$105 weekly, and$420 monthly. Prices go up to $120 weekly when it gets cold. Shower house was shut down for COVID and shuts down in winter. 

Tenting is cheaper$11

No ground fires allowed.

Friendly,helpful hosts on site.

Close to the Bridges,John Wayne sites,lauandromat,and grocery stores.

You might get a view of bridesmaids and grooms at the fairgrounds on the weekend heading to a wedding in the fairground building, nice to see during my work COVID isolation.

When the trees get big and fill in and COVID is over and the shower house is open it will be 4 stars.

Surprise River Gorge in Iowa

Comfortable and scenic park in Iowa with forested trails, gorge, and natural water features amidst the farm fields and rolling hills.  Campground sites are well spaced and mostly level, many with shade and decent privacy.  Mix of hookups for different needs; access to water and trash was easy.  The bathrooms were a bit dated and unclean when we visited, but not terrible.  Good cell coverage in the area and we could do work and school with our Verizon Hotspot.  Beware of the raccoons!   They were not aggressive from the standpoint of approaching us, but they were brash in approaching camper and supplies after dark, and they were a constant presence at the dumpster.  Do not leave food out!  Deer and other small game/wildlife seem abundant.  Trails were poorly signed, but the park is relatively small and getting lost or wandering does not have bad consequences; you'll find where you wanted to go without too much trouble.

Solid campground

Stayed at this campground for 3 nights while visiting Des Moines.  We stayed in Loop 1- site 138 because we wanted electrical.  The electrical box has 2 standard household plugs which is nice.  This loop was mostly RVs due to the electrical hook ups.  There aren't really trees between the sites, but it is in a wooded area which is nice and there is some space between the sites so you don't feel like you are right on top of the other people.  Generally, people were pretty quiet, especially once it got dark.  Each site as a gravel drive and then open gravel area with a picnic table and fire pit with grill grate.  Plenty of room for camp chairs and other furniture you may want to set up.  There is a grassy area all around the gravel with plenty of room for multiple tents.  2 bath/shower houses within a short walk from the site- they were both clean and solid to use.  There are some short trails within the park which are generally well marked, but just 1 trail is longer than about 1/2 a mile.  Didn't check it out, but there is also a large lake.  Lots of picnic areas throughout the park.  There's also a volleyball court and free lending library near one of the bathhouses.  Overall, I'd recommend this campground as long as you don't mind seeing your neighbors.  Quick drive into Des Moines too.

Just Made It!

Took my new to me PUP on her maiden voyage to Jester Park in July with my two kids, best friend and her daughter. We BARELY made it, pulling in on a Thursday around 4, and snagged one of 2 spots left! We were lucky enough to get a corner lot with some good shade trees. Staff was friendly, bathrooms were SUPER clean and campground was very quiet! The downfall is that raccoons in the park have 0 fear of humans, and I had an unknown hole in the wheel well cover… OF COURSE right into the cabinet where I kept the dog food. After a grand total of 3 hours sleep trying to figure out what on earth these critters were SO FASCINATED with at our site, we patched the hole with duct tape, the cabinet with duct tape and used a broom for security at 4am. (Yep, they got right in to my camper but no harm came to the sleeping kids, the snoring dog, the gang of 4 raccoons or the two adults unless you consider a severe lack of sleep to be harmful!) There's a lot to do at Jester Park including a natural playscape and plenty of beaches nearby. Would 100% stay again with a reservation and a solid raccoon proof plan!

Nice surprise in Iowa

Great for an overnight on my road trip back the Denver. Clean bathrooms and showers.

Hidden away

My favorite part about this camp is the variety of sites offered. We went with a hike in site to throw some adventure into our lives. For only $11 a tent sit this place is amazing. Trees everywhere with privacy if wanted or also a great social scene. Honestly this camp is for anyone. The trails around the park are also amazing. Just don’t leave a Cheeto bag out on accident when you fall asleep because raccoons can smell everything, and when they do, they own the place.

Ledges

Ledges State Park

Ledges is an amazing place. It has so much to do. There are long trails to hike, creeks to play in.

You can bring your tent or RV and camp. The RV camps have water/sewer hookups. The primitive tent sites are usually pretty clean and can get pretty busy on the weekends.

There are lots of bridges that get flooded out and are fun to drive over. Most of the kids like to hang out near them and get splashed.

Its a fantastic place to enjoy the outdoors and especially in the fall. Also if you go to Ames stop at Great Plains pizza company.

Fun easy spot near salorville mouth

Good fishing nice open areas and trails to explore. Lots of cool kid activities. Buffalo ranch near by which is cool as well as Pingora outdoor supply store near by where you can purchase firewood and other camp supplies.