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Prairie Rose State Park provides a number of beautiful picnic areas with excellent views of the 218-acre lake. These are ideal places for family cookouts. Two open picnic shelters may be reserved online through the park reservation system. Both of the shelters have electrical outlets available.
Camping at Prairie Rose, whether for a weekend or a family vacation, is delightful. There are 95 campsites, 77 with electric hookups and 8 with full hook-up. Two campgrounds are available. The East campground feature electric and full hook-up campsites with modern shower and rest room facilities. The West campground has both electrical and non-electrical campsites. Advance campsite reservations can be made through the park reservation system. Half of the campsites are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Two camping cabins offer another overnight option for park visitors. Each cabin is equipped with heat/AC, microwave, dorm fridge, table and chairs, two twin-over-full bunk beds, picnic table and fire ring. There are water hydrants and a pit latrine adjacent to the cabins and a courtesy dock is nearby. Each cabin accommodates 6 people, with a maximum of 7, and can be reserved in advanced through the park reservation system.
There are approximately 7 miles of multi-purpose trails within the park which offer visitors year round use. An interpretive trail starts in the northwest corner of the park and winds along the shoreline providing great places to observe a variety of plants and wildlife. All trails within the park are open for hiking, snowmobiling, and cross country skiing.
Lake Activities (swimming, fishing, boating)
The lake is the real focal point of the park. The Prairie Rose beach provides swimming and sunbathing fun for young and old. A play-ground area is located near the beach and another one in the campground area.
The lake is popular for all types of boating from canoes and sailboats to motor boats and, in the winter, ice boats. Any size boat motors may be used at "no wake" speeds. Two modern boat ramps provide easy access to the lake.
Anglers of all ages will find a challenge at Prairie Rose. The lake provides excellent bass, channel catfish, bluegill and crappie fishing from boat or shoreline. Six new fishing jetties have just been completed. There are two fish cleaning docks located on the lake for successful anglers convenience.
Prairie Rose State Park is one of the most attractive outdoor recreation areas in western Iowa. The 422-acre park lies in a region of scenic hills, six miles east and three miles south of Harlan.
The park received its name from a small town called Village of Prairie Rose which was once located near the present park location. Plans for Prairie Rose were initiated in the 1930s. However, actual construction of the dam started in 1958 with the park dedication taking place in 1962.
The park is located 8 miles southeast of Harlan, Iowa and 8 miles north of Walnut, Iowa.