Sac and Fox Overlook-Steamboat Rock

Up until now I have overlooked going to Steamboat Rock on my sojourn around Iowa.Why this happened is hard to figure with a town that has such an interesting name,so this spring I decided to cross this stop off my list.This particular area has the unique feature of being located at the junction of 3 major Iowa landform regions much too complicated for me to describe.I do  know that from the modern overlook facilities on the south side of the designated wildlife area you get an excellent view of the Iowa River Valley  and the newly constructed US 20 Bridge (see below)

This geographic anomaly has some Iowa history connected to it as one might suspect a prominent point to possess.The site commemorates the Sac and Fox tribes ,the principal early inhabitants of the area,who undoubtedly used the area as a rendezvous point and also as a protected habitation location..Hardin County has done a nice job furnishing the public with a modern gathering place replete with tables restrooms and even mounted binoculars so that one can fully enjoy the view of wildlife and the valley.

Now about that name… Steamboat Rock was not something to be avoided in early Iowa River navigation as I had supposed . Area  indicates that town adopted the name for a prominent rock formation on the river bluff  that resembled an anchored steamboat from the river’s perspective.However lightning struck on a tree on the bluff ,rocks fell into the river and the likeness was lost..The memory of this landmark apparently was etched deeply in the area’s residents minds and they went ahead incorporated the town as “Steamboat Rock”.. Hardin-ed firmly in history.


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