Variety is what you will find on the Grant Wood Scenic Byway stretching over nearly 80 miles of paved roads in Jones and Jackson counties.
Taking a bird’s eye view down the byway, the surrounding countryside is a patch work of beautiful rolling farm land and limestone bluffs connecting three rivers, the Wapsipinicon, Maquoketa and the mighty Mississippi. Wetlands dot the landscape and provide a home for many types of wildlife and birds.
Marvel at the rich timberland along the byway, also housing countless varieties of wildlife and providing a great location for bird watching and deer or turkey hunting.
One trip on the byway is never enough. Seasonal changes make each trip feel like venturing into uncharted territory. Experience the spectacular colors in fall and farmland springing forth nature’s bounty in corn, soybeans, alfalfa and lush pastures. Surprises may come your way when you discover one of the many vineyards that find a home along the byway.
No matter the season there is always something to experience along the route, with numerous museums, historical sites, antique shops, restaurants, parks and interpretative centers to visit. In spring, summer and fall, campgrounds and ATV and hiking trails are a highlight. The winter cold provides a clean cover for the skiers and snowmobilers to appreciate. Ice fishermen will adore the relaxing sound of the cool wind whistling over the ice as they reel in the day’s catch.
For the art, culture and history buff, the Grant Wood Scenic Byway offers an art experience that will leave you inspired as native Iowan Grant Wood was so many years ago. Long-ago prairie life will spring from exhibits and documents explore the history of the byway’s communities.