Camping

Camping in Full Swing - Things you need to know

Now that camping is in full swing, we thought it would be helpful to have a few reminders:

Camping:

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Make reservations—especially if you’re camping in a group. Several weekends are already full in June and July. BIG TIP: When you make reservations, please know that every site is a great site and you will not be reserving a specific site #. Because we specialize in groups—big and small, we actually create a unique map every week so we can ensure that sites that need to be together are together. You CAN request a specific site when you make your reservation and we will do our best to get you in it.

Check-in the office when you arrive—especially since you don’t know your site #. The offie is located in the barn at the entrance. Every camper and every tenter MUST check in when you arrive—yes, even if you’re camping in a group and they are already here.

Check-out when you leave—so you can settle up in the office and we can tell you how happy we are to camp with such amazing people like you!!

You can reserve sites online (both individual and group) or call the office 563-883-8562.


River Activities:

Travel times for river activities fluctuate depending on the weather and the current river levels. Generally speaking canoes & kayaks travel @ 2 mph, tubes @ 1mph; hence if we shuttle you 2 1/2 miles up stream with tubes, it’s going to take you about 2-3 hours to float down river. And the long 4-5 hour canoe trip means you’re starting out about 9 miles up river. If you stop at the fresh water springs or to collect fossils or eat a picnic lunch on the banks, it will, of course, take longer. Plan accordingly :)

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Canoes & Kayaks

  • Short trip goes in at the state line: 2-3 hours

  • Long trip goes in at Granger, MN: 4-5 hours

Tubes —All tubes go in at the 9’ bridge

  • Medium trip: 2-3 hours

  • Short trip: 1 hour
    This trip is an excellent option for adults in kayaks or canoes w/ small children in tubes. It gets you out on the beautiful river without the long time commitment.


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Fishing:

Yes, you need a license to fish in the state of Iowa. Yes, you need a trout stamp if you’re fishing in a trout stream. Yes, fishing is great even right here at the campground landing.

Keep in mind if you’re fishing while canoeing down river on our long trip, we actually launch you in Minnesota; you’ll cross the state line at the Niagara cave springs about 2 miles out (or 1 hour after you put in). Get your license accordingly.

You can buy your fishing license online and download a digital copy to your phone as sufficient proof of your license. Get your license and more info on the Iowa DNR website.

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We have so many warm sunny days of camping to look forward to this season. We can’t wait to see you.

Camp on,
HFCR Staff

Aiming to open April 19, 2019

Now that our long cold winter is coming to an end, yes, spring really has sprung—at least in terms of our Gregorian calendar, and in spite of the recent April snow storm that dumped another foot of snow and ice onto our very-determined-to-thaw lawns… we’re still looking toward the weekend of April 19 to open the campground.

Last weekend, working under merciful and good 68 & sunny skies, we got the water turned on, hot water heaters pumping, and lawn mowers prepped. This week, trapped by icy cold winds all day inside the store, we took inventory, stocked fresh goods, and organized the office. So, yeah, we’re ready to camp.

We are still waiting for the frost boils to thaw so we can drive on the roads safely. So, we’ll post regular updates if & when there’s something new to report.

Meanwhile, let’s start camping next weekend.

Time Change for Checking In & Out

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Effective Immediately

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New times for...

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Check-out & Check-in

For campers & tents check-in/check-out times have changed.

Check-out is now 2pm.

It used to be Noon. But we think you need more time to hang before you pack up--especially because time flies when you're camping.  

As always, you can still check out early and stay till you're ready to leave--IF you make arrangements with us in the office first. After all, you may floating down the river that day or hitting up Niagara Cave or cooking up a buffet lunch. Whatever! Just make sure you let us know when you settle up in the office before 2pm.

Check-in is now 3pm.

It used to be 1pm. You still get here in plenty of time to set up and do dinner before you hang at the campfire, and you can work the morning if you must. 

As always, if you want to come in early, let us know and we'll make arrangements for you and your site. Conversely, if you are arriving late--meaning, after office hours, please let us know so we can make arrangements for you.

For cabins, nothing's changed. Check-in is still after 3pm and Check-out is by noon.

In just about all things camping, communication is key. And it's as much for your convenience as it is for ours. So, talk to us. After all, we're your camping family and that's what families do.

Opening Day Update: May 4... it's official!

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We're almost there...

Really, this time. It's been a wild winter ride this year, and, as usual, that spring ground hog is a liar liar stuck in mire. We are waaaaay past six more weeks of winter. And snow is still on the way...

Here's the story... On March 28, our Tentative Opening day was: Friday April 6th

April 2: We want to let you know that although we are anxiously working to open as soon as is super-humanly possible, we are now hunkering down for a snow storm headed our way tomorrow-followed by a week of below freezing temps and more snow expected on Sunday-Monday April 8-9th. YIKES!!

Target Opening day is now: Friday April 13, 2018.

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April 10: Due to the unusual volume of weather-related difficulties we're experiencing this month, our opening wait time is now 6... no 13, no 20 days past our target of April 1. 

Target opening day is now: Friday April 20, 2018

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April 18: We regret to inform you that due to the current weather conditions--aka today's snow storm dumping 6-10" of new snow and freezing temps allowing it to pile up, we are adjusting the season opening date.

2018 Opening Day for Camping: (maybe) Friday April 27

Hopefully! We will email Seasonal Families in the event that we can open earlier.  it's inevitable now, as after today's snow, we are looking at a week of warm spring weather... plenty of time to get frost out of the ground and firm it up so we can get our camp on!

April 24: Believe it or not, the frost is still not out of the ground yet. And, we still have ice and snow covering various parts of the campground. In fact, the road to the landing is covered with ice--all the way down (sigh). We have never seen a winter hang on so long nor a spring come so late before. This is definitely the latest we've ever opened (heavy sigh). But, it's time to start camping. So...

It's Official: Opening Day: Friday May 4, 2017.

The end.