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Step into the great outdoors at Wildcat Den State Park, located around 10 miles northeast of Muscatine, IA. A number of hiking trails help visitors enjoy the beauty of the area, plus there are many natural wonders to seek out and find while out on an outdoor adventure. It is one of the unique parks in the state, where many outdoor enthusiasts rent an RV in Muscatine County and set out to enjoy the landscape and preservation of historic structures.
There are a huge number of things to participate in at Wildcat Den State Park, including bird watching, fishing, hiking, kayaking, picnicking, and wildlife viewing, to name just a few. The fun doesn’t stop in the park, just outside you’ll find a number of cool attractions and towns such as Wildcat Den, Durant, Davenport, and Muscatine.
One of the main activities within Wildcat Den State Park is hiking. Many of the trails lead to some fascinating sites such as 'Fat Man's Squeeze," 'Steamboat Rock," and 'Devil's Punch Bowl." Hikers can enjoy the stunning views of the beautiful bluffs and rock outcroppings. While beautiful all year round, nature is particularly outstanding in the fall, as the leaves turn stunning orange and golden colors. Bring your RV rental to Wildcat Den State Park and enjoy the view.
While in the park exploring the interesting rock formations is a must. There are two dens that have formed in the side of a weathered sandstone cliff, which are open to visitors. Horseshoe Bend was created when a stream undercut the sandstone to create a concave rock formation and the nearby large bowl-shaped area is known as "Devil's Punch Bowl,' which can be seen from a unique viewpoint by making use of the nearby wooden steps. A huge piece of rock has broken away from a bluff and is now known as "Steamboat Rock," with the place between the rock known as "Devil's Alley," with "Fat Man's Squeeze" located further up. It is these rock formations that encourage people to go camping at Wildcat Den State Park.
After all that hiking and exploring, finish of a trip to Wildcat Den State Park with a picnic at one of the picnic areas, one of which is along Pine Creek. The lower area has been unchanged for years. Enjoy your food by the water or further off into the trees. The upper picnic area is also nearby with sheltered and open picnic areas available depending on the weather. There are also restroom facilities nearby.
Camping with an RV at Wildcat Den State Park is the perfect way to get away from it all, be it with friends or family. The campground has 28 campsites with restroom facilities. These primitive campsites are located in a wild and open area of the forest, and although it is surrounded by trees, there isn't much shade.
All the campsites at Wildcat Den State Park are level and covered in grass. They have a fire ring and picnic table with the start of trails nearby. For those that are not so into the primitive camping experience, another option is to stay at the Fairport Recreation Area just five miles away, which provides much more modern facilities.
One of the focal points Wildcat Den State Park is Pine Creek Grist Mill. Built-in 1848, it is one of the finest examples of mid-nineteenth-century mills in the country and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Today it works as a fully functioning mill, and tours are offered to see the old technology in action. Visitors can further step back into life in a small frontier town by visiting Melpine Schoolhouse which has been lovingly restored. Tour guides will share the history of the mill and life in the 1800s.
For a truly unique attraction, pay a visit to the National Pearl Button Museum, which is located in the Pearl Button Capital of the World. Shells taken from rivers of 19 states around Iowa were shipped to the town of Muscatine to make 1.5 billion buttons every single year. The museum tells the story of this process, as well as a history of the town. In addition to the museum, there is also a gift shop on-site, filled with souvenirs that make great gifts for family and friends.
A short drive away from the park is the city of Davenport, which is well worth a visit when you camp in an RV near Wildcat Den State Park. The Figge Art Museum in town is full of creative works, and the building also houses art classes, events, lectures, and more. Chocoholics shouldn’t miss a trip to the Chocolate Manor, located in downtown. This elegant shop is full over 100 kinds of chocolate, with everything made on-site. Catch a show at the Art Deco style Adler Theater for a fantastic end to a packed day in the city.