DNR events have been cancelled due to the Covid-19 outbreak. Safety of our users, attendees, partners and staff is most important. When possible, events will be rescheduled and that information will be distributed accordingly. Please check this site frequently for the latest closures, postponements and updates.
STATEWIDE FACILITY CLOSURES: All pit latrines and port-a-potties are closed until April 15, 2020. Due to lack of restroom facilities, all camping cabins and shelters are closed until April 15, 2020. Campgrounds are open but campers must provide their own self-contained bathroom until park restrooms are available. Self-contained includes bathrooms in RVs/travel trailers/5th wheels and portable camping toilets. All modern restroom and shower facilities are currently closed for the winter season. Many parks try to have modern campground facilities open in mid-April, weather permitting. Some parks open modern camping facilities mid to late April, weather permitting. All lodges are currently closed through April 30, 2020. Playgrounds are not cleaned and sanitized. DNR strongly recommends visitors avoid playgrounds to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 - user discretion is advised. (POSTED 3/30/2020)

Lower Gar State Recreation Area

Physical location:
South entrance - 2322 202nd St.
Arnolds Park, IA 51331
North entrance - 647 Dam Road,
Arnolds Park, IA 51331

Contact Information:
Gull Point State Park
ph. 712-337-3211

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Map of Iowa Great Lakes Complex 

Facilities and Activities

 picnic area

Lower Gar State Recreation Area is a great place for a family picnic. There are several picnic tables located throughout this nicely shaded area with a great view of Lower Gar Lake.

Lower Gar is located near many area recreational trails.

Lake Activities (boating, fishing)
Lower Gar is one of the five lakes connected in the Iowa Great Lakes chain along with West Okoboji, East Okoboji, Minnewashta, and Upper Gar. Lower Gar State Recreation Area also offers the user a boat ramp to launch a boat, and several areas to fish along the shoreline.

West Okoboji and the many other lakes of the area are some of the prime fishing spots in Iowa. Anglers will find challenging sport pursuing a variety of game fish, including walleye, northern pike, smallmouth bass, white bass, perch, bluegills, crappies, catfish, and bullheads. Boating is also very popular on the lakes using everything from canoes to sailboats and ski rigs.

The "lakes area" of northwest Iowa offers a tremendous array of outdoor recreation opportunities, year-round. The unique setting of beautiful and clear Lakes East and West Okoboji, Big Spirit Lake and other water bodies truly provides wonderful opportunities for outdoor recreation. The focal point for state parks and recreation areas in this region is beautiful Gull Point State Park, established in 1933. Gull Point provides a pleasing, shaded setting on West Okoboji Lake and offers a well-rounded variety of outdoor recreation facilities.

Nearby Towns
Lower Gar State Recreation Area is located in the Iowa Great Lakes region near the towns of Milford, Arnolds Park, Okoboji, and Spirit Lake.

Nearby Lakes

Minnewashta Lake
Lower Gar Lake
Upper Gar Lake
West Okoboji Lake
East Okoboji Lake
Garlock Slough
Prairie Lake
Center Lake
Jemmerson Slough
Lily Lake
Pleasant Lake
Spirit Lake
Welch Lake
Marble Lake
Schmerse W.A. Pond
West Hottes
Sunken Lake
Hale Slough
East Hottes
Diamond Lake
Sandbar Slough
Little Spirit Lake
Grover's Marsh


Within park
Bicycling, Bird Watching, Boat Launch Ramp, Dock, Boat, Dock, Fishing, Fishing, Picnic Area, Walking, Wildflower Viewing, Wildlife Viewing

Less than a mile
ATM/Cash Machine, Fuel, Vehicles, Putt-putt Course

More than a mile
Boat Rental, Church, Grocery Store, Hospital, Picnic Shelter, Retail, Bait & Tackle