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Oak and Hickory Upland Loop

Intermediate
 3.0 (1)

A natural surface trail from the Bloomington Street entrance to the park, looping around a wooded section.


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Map Key

0.6

Miles

0.9

KM

80%

Runnable

812' 247 m

High

685' 209 m

Low

127' 39 m

Up

120' 37 m

Down

8%

Avg Grade (5°)

36%

Max Grade (20°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Spring · Wildflowers · Wildlife

The park is open from dawn until dusk year round.

Runner Notes

Hickory Hill Park is the diamond (in the rough) of Iowa City. There are probably 7-10 total miles of trail in this park, which is situated entirely within the city limits of Iowa City. None of the trails in the park are named or marked. In addition to all of the obvious trails, there's quite a few game trails that get used with varying frequency and are anywhere between entirely to impossibly navigable depending on the season. Though guidelines are for dogs to be on-leash, it's far more common to encounter them off-leash... that said, I've hiked/run thousands of miles in this park and never had a negative dog encounter.

Description

This is a small portion of the circuitous trail system at Hickory Hill Park. It begins in the parking lot at the end of Bloomington Street.

Jump on the trail and pass a small pavilion (with park information) called the Norton Wayside and cross over a small wooden bridge.

From here, you can go straight or, to run the section in reverse, take a left up the hill. Going straight through a clearing, you'll enter the woods in about 40 meters and start up a gradual uphill. A branch of Ralston Creek is off to the right, and a small oak savanna is off to your left.

At the top of the hill is a three-way intersection. Going straight connects to the dam trail and other sections of the park. For this loop, turn left and continue up a gradual incline until you come to a large boulder. There's a little cut trail before the boulder, or you can continue straight to a four-way intersection. Going right will lead you into additional trails and sections of the park, and straight will take you out of the park and into Oakland Cemetery (home to the famed Black Angel).

To complete this loop, take a left down a steep, rocky, rooty trail. At the bottom, you can take a right back over the wooden bridge to the Bloomington Street parking lot.

Flora & Fauna

Classic Iowa flora/fauna. Lots of song birds, deer, and small mammals.

Contacts

Shared By:

chris kilgore

Trail Ratings

  3.0 from 1 vote

#27970

Overall
  3.0 from 1 vote
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Trail Rankings

#106

in Iowa

#27,970

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3 Views Last Month
114 Since Oct 29, 2017
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Photos

Unmarked trail intersection on the Oak and Hickory Upland Trail
Oct 29, 2017 near Iowa City, IA
Oak and hickory savanna.
Oct 29, 2017 near Iowa City, IA
Western hill on the Oak and Hickory Upland Loop.
Oct 29, 2017 near Iowa City, IA
The dam trail facing east
Nov 3, 2017 near Iowa City, IA
After crossing the small wooden bridge you can go straight through this clearing to hit the trail counter-clockwise (as described) or take a right to do the trail in reverse
Oct 29, 2017 near Iowa City, IA
Start of the Oak and Hickory Upland Loop.
Oct 29, 2017 near Iowa City, IA

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