“A minimum maintenance road and segment of the YRSF backpacking trail.”
— Kenny Slocum
River/Creek · Views
Donahue Road connects State Forest Road--right across from the Little Paint Campground--to the Great River Road near Waukon junction.
This minimum maintenance road is technically open to vehicles, which can take away from the experience a little bit, but definitely sees far more usage by runners and horseback riders.
From State Forest Road, the route follows the edge of a bluff with several beautiful sandstone outcroppings before crossing over Paint Creek. A few very mellow ups and downs make up the topography, but the route can be slightly tough on the ankles by virtue of the large gravel comprising the road bed.
A few other trailheads beckon to the interior of the forest, which makes Donahue great for staying oriented while exploring the pedestrian-only trails, which can get a little labyrinthine. The road itself has some excellent views of the surrounding bluffs.
Flora & Fauna
Eagles and great blue heron can often be spotted fishing along Paint Creek.