Wednesday ยท August 2, 2023
Embark on an Unforgettable Equestrian Adventure at River Valley Lodge and Campground in Southeast Iowa
Author: Admin
River Valley Lodge & Campground in Iowa | Top Horse Trails

Amidst the gently flowing waters of the Des Moines River and the soaring eagles, a dream and a concept came together to create the extraordinary River Valley Lodge and Campground. Nestled in the heart of Southeast Iowa, this picturesque haven embraces the laid-back atmosphere of the region, boasting glistening ponds, breathtaking sunsets, and the harmonious rustling of giant cottonwoods. With Mother Nature as the architect, Steve and Carolyn Kokjohn breathed life into their dream, and now River Valley Lodge and Campground stand as a reality, ready to offer a state-of-the-art experience for visitors of all kinds.

From Dream to Reality

The journey from a mere dream and concept to the awe-inspiring River Valley Lodge and Campground was one filled with determination and collaboration. Countless talented individuals contributed their efforts and labor to turn the vision into a stunning reality. Steve and Carolyn extend their heartfelt gratitude to all those involved, acknowledging their hard work in bringing this extraordinary destination to life.

A Western Oasis in the Tri-State Area

River Valley Lodge and Campground stands as a family-oriented oasis with a distinctive western atmosphere, rivaling any other similar destination in the tri-state area. Whether you're a couple seeking a place to bring your beloved horses, camp, and explore the forested trails, a large group yearning for a memorable get-together in the beautiful lodge, or a horse group or organization in need of an arena or complete campground, this versatile and adaptable complex caters to all needs. Here, horses are cherished companions, but campers of all kinds are warmly welcomed to share in the magic of River Valley Lodge and Campground.

A Place of Flexibility and Warm Hospitality

At River Valley Lodge and Campground, flexibility is the cornerstone of their service. The team endeavors to meet the unique needs and desires of each guest, ensuring an unparalleled experience tailored to individual preferences. Whether you arrive with horses or not, the warm and inviting atmosphere embraces all who step foot into this enchanting haven.

Explore and Experience the Magic

River Valley Lodge and Campground is more than just a destination; it's an invitation to embark on an unforgettable adventure. Discover the beauty of Southeast Iowa as you traverse forested trails, bask in the tranquility of the quiet ponds, and witness the splendor of the sunsets. The lodge provides an ideal setting for gatherings, offering a perfect backdrop for cherished memories with friends and family.

River Valley Lodge and Campground has transformed dreams into reality, welcoming guests to indulge in the scenic beauty of Southeast Iowa. Under the warm and attentive care of Steve and Carolyn Kokjohn, this equestrian paradise stands as a testament to hard work, dedication, and an unwavering commitment to creating an exceptional experience for all who grace its grounds. Whether you're a horse enthusiast, nature lover, or simply seeking a tranquil retreat, River Valley Lodge and Campground promises an unparalleled escape in the heart of Iowa's scenic beauty.


River Valley Lodge & Campground offers the following facilities and amenities:

  • Cabins
  • Bunkhouses
  • Horse barns
  • Horse wash and rolling area
  • Horse arena
  • Horse stalls
  • Shower house
  • Office/laundry/family restroom
  • Horse trails
  • Water
  • Electricity
  • Fire pit
  • Picnic tables


Horse Campsite:

Their campgrounds and campsites are "horse friendly", but a horse is not a requirement to book a stay for camping at the River Valley Lodge and Campground. You will find fifty (50) campground sites that are equipped with both water and electricity and an abundance of primitive campsites. All of these campsites have access to the beautiful climate-controlled shower house. One side of the shower house is for men and the other side for women and each side is decorated accordingly. Also available to all campers is a coin-operated laundry, a very unique playground for the children, a fishing pond, many trails for horseback riding, a large warm-up arena, and a covered stall is included if available. If you don't have a camper or tent there is even a bunkhouse that sleeps six (6) and a one (1) room log cabin that you can rent. 


Horse Trails:

Their timbered trail system begins at the campground and heads directly into our very scenic Lion Gulch. People enjoy riding their trails which vary from well-maintained routes wide enough for riding two abreast, to rugged single-file trails that meander amongst beautiful oak and cedar forests. You will encounter numerous rock-bottomed creek crossings and several unique rock outcroppings. Deer and turkey are abundant and may be viewed along the way. A band of replacement fillies can sometimes be seen as well. Our trails border and have direct access to the 9,000 acres of Shimek State Forest which offers another 40 miles of established horse trails.


Cost Details:

  • $15 - Primitive campsite
  • $15 - Horse stall per day Friday and Saturday and $10.00 Sunday through Thursday.
  • $10 - 20' by 30' pens (four of them) are available per day any day of the week, or use the 150 feet of high ties at no additional cost.
  • Other rates are available on their page.


If you want to discover and explore other campsites and horse trails, here are some of them that you may visit:






River Valley Lodge & Campground does require reservations for overnight accommodations. Please visit their page here on Top Horse Trails - River Valley Lodge & Campground for more information