We have been on a lot of bike trails in Iowa but Decorah’s new Trout Run Trail is the most consistently gorgeous. It is only an 11 mile loop but what an 11 miles.We rode along the rushing waters of the Upper Iowa, past high stone bluffs furry with trees, past picture postcard farmsteads, (the white farmhouse, red wood and stone barn, the black and white grazing cattle), through dazzling fields of tall corn and soybeans and almost psychedelic-green grass. We stopped at the top of a high hill and looked out for miles across the rolling fields. Later we stopped at a large trout hatchery with pools full of jumping rainbow trout soon to be in Iowa steams.
For breakfast we got lucky at Magpie, a coffee house with excellent French toast and scrambled egg wraps and surprisingly swift service, given the crowd that arrived. We also enjoyed Agora Arts, a terrific crafts gallery; the Oneota Community Co-Op, Dunn’s Springs (the closest to Ithaca’s falls I’ve seen in Iowa), Seed Savers, and the Sugar Bowl ice cream shoppe (sitting on the second floor balcony watching the action on water street, the main drag).