Larkin Valley Trail
ElevationAscent: 429' 131 m
Descent: -47' -14 m
High: 1,083' 330 m
Low: 680' 207 m
GradeAvg Grade: 6% (4°)
Max Grade: 13% (7°)
Current trail conditions
Popular runs nearby
Effigy Mounds North Unit - Hanging Rock
6.5 mi 10.5 km • Out and Back • 890 ft Ascent 271.14 m Ascent
Doubletrack McGregor, IA( 6 )
Navigate on-trail with our free app
Run this trail?
Add details to help others plan their adventure.
“A path through forest, prairie, and even some cornfield connecting State Forest Rd. with the Bluff Trail/Overlook Road.”— Kenny Slocum
From the south trailhead, the trail has a short climb with a few switchbacks up a gravelly path until it gains the top of the ridge. From there, the route heads through some open prairie for ~0.2 miles, before heading back downhill and into the woods along Larkin Valley.
In Larkin Valley, the trail climbs steadily up along the wash. Some gently trickling springs, dense forest, and moss covered boulders make for nice surroundings on a hot day. A few muddy spots are easily negotiated.
For the last ~0.3 miles, the climb gets a little steeper as the trail heads away from the wash and up to a cornfield. Traveling with the cornfield on one side and the forest on the other makes for a slightly jarring experience. Eventually, the trail heads back into the woods proper, making a sharp left turn.
A wide path takes users along a shared segment of the Bluff Trail before linking up with Overlook Road. Overall, it is a pretty nice trail.
By heading through prairie, open woodland, and riparian forest, this trail offers opportunities to spot all manner of snakes, turkey, and deer.
Land Manager: Iowa DNR - Yellow River State Forest