Facilities and Activities
A lodge constructed in the style of an old army outpost is an excellent place for group gatherings such as reunions and wedding receptions. The lodge may be reserved online through the park reservation system.
An open shelter is available on a first-come, first-served basis at no fee.
Fort Defiance State Park has 16 campsites. The camping area is non-modern. No flush toilets or showers are present. However, electrical hookups are available at eight sites. All camping permits are obtained through self-registration at the campground. Camping Fees can be paid at the site.
Several trails take you around the park and through the hills and woodlands that make up Fort Defiance. Equestrian use is allowed on three of the trails. During winter months the park is a popular place for cross country skiing.
Fort Defiance State Park's 191 acres of rugged woodland provide a beautiful contrast to the gently rolling surrounding farmlands. The park's trails, picnic areas and scenic overlooks provide a great place to relax. Its lush cover of vegetation includes hawthorn, plum, locust and many species of the state tree - the oak. In the spring, the slopes are speckled with trillium, bloodroot, hepatica and violets. A small prairie with native grasses and flowers, including the endangered prairie bush clover, thrives on a secluded knoll.
Estherville is one mile northeast on Highway 9. The Iowa Great Lakes Region is 12 miles west.
Bird Watching, Boat Launch Ramp, Boating, Camping - Electric, Camping - Nonelectric, Day-use Lodge, Hiking, Horseback Riding, Jogging/Running, Non-modern Campground, Picnic Area, Picnic Shelter, Playground, Restrooms, Trails, Equestrian, Trails, Hiking, Walking, Wildflower Viewing, Wildlife ViewingMore than a mile
Antiquing, ATM/Cash Machine, Church, Dock, Boat, Dock, Fishing, Fish Cleaning Station, Fuel, Vehicles, Hospital, Hunting, Retail, Bait & Tackle, Retail, Drinks, Retail, Firewood, Retail, Ice, Retail, Snacks