|Hike Name:||Sunset Ridge Trail|
GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
From US Hwy # 2 turn South on State Hwy 239 and continue straight into the park.
|Total Hike Distance:||2.00 miles|
|Hike Difficulty:||Easy to Moderate|
|Hike Type:||In & Out, Backtrack Hike|
|Hike Starts/Ends:||Overlook Parking Area|
|Trails Used:||Sunset Ridge Trail|
|Backcountry Water Sources:||None|
|Management:||State Park Service|
|Contact Information:||Waubonsie State Park
2585 Waubonsie Park Rd
Hamburg, IA 51640
|Best Season:||Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall|
|Road Conditions:||Primary Paved Roads, Secondary Paved Roads|
|Hike Summary:||Waubonsie is located in the unique "Loess Hills", a landform found only along the Missouri River in Iowa and Missouri, and in China. As the glaciers melted 14,000-28,000 years ago the Missouri River became a major channel for water and sediment during the summer.
In the winter, when the water level was reduced, these deposits were exposed to the wind. These fine particles, called loess, were carried by strong winds and deposited when the winds encountered the steep slopes of the east valley wall. This created the distinctive loess hills topography visitors can see today. The park topography resembles the "badlands" of the west and harbors plants like yucca that are normally found in more arid climates.
This hike starts at the parking area for the main overlook in the park. It follows the ridgeline next to the road then takes a right turn to the west and follows the trail through a strand of hardwoods. There are outstanding views to the valley floor below - especially in the winter.