Is this Heaven? No, it’s… actually, let me check on that. This stream must be the most beautiful of all in Iowa. It really appears to be something from a fairy tale – crystal clear, cold water, cute bridges, hidden picnic tables, gorgeous trees growing streamside…. amazing.
I came here twice on the last day of July, 2016. The first time was late morning, on a sunny day, to fish. I parked by the Paine Memorial stone. The ice cold spring water felt amazing on my sandaled feet, and exploring the streamside trails was so fun I basically forgot I had come there to fish. I hiked all around, taking in the watercress, the trees, and the moss. The water was so cold that my feet began to hurt.
The areas I explored did not seem likely to hold a lot of fish, but I noticed as the stream went down toward the river, the runs got deeper and less riffly, and I did see a fair number of people fishing.
I came back around dusk, and it was a very hot and humid night. The extra cold water meeting the warm air caused a beautiful mist to envelope the entire valley, which made it look even more magical. The only ones here were me, my wife, and our dogs- or were we? Through the deep mist, up an impossibly small tributary stream, I saw an elfin young woman casting perfect loops with a minuscule fly rod. I couldn’t be sure whether she was human, or perhaps a nisse? As I walked toward her, the figure faded away and vanished in the mist.
I can’t guarantee you’ll see a woods sprite if you visit, but I do guarantee some beautiful photos. Have fun and keep a close eye out for spirits!
-July 31, 2016
|Park or Wildlife Area:||Twin Springs City Park|
|Access:||Highway 52 runs along the west side of Decorah. Take the turn toward the city park.|
|Pros:||Gorgeous clear water, easy access, awesome scenery.|
|Cons:||Didn’t see a lot of fish, though I’m sure they’re here. Lower portions of stream were busy.|
|Additional Information:||There is a bakery and coffee shop tucked up Twin Springs Road. I didn’t get to visit it but it looked busy and fun.|
Ratings: (out of 10)
|Water Clarity:||10 (upstream, gets less clear downstream)|