4.4
125 votes

Devonian Fossil Gorge

Coralville Lake, 2850 Prairie Du Chien Rd NE, Iowa City, Iowa 52240 USA

Free
Free to Visit
Open Now
Fri 6a-10p
  • Independent
  • Credit Cards
    Accepted
  • Pet Friendly
  • Wheelchair
    Accessible
  • No Public
    Restrooms
Add to Trip
Remove Ads

“glimpse into Iowa's geologic past”

Imagine walking on a 375 million year old ocean floor! This glimpse into Iowa's geologic past was first exposed during the Floods of 1993 at Coralville Lake, then again more were exposed during the Floods of 2008. The fossils and limestone bedrock of the Devonian Fossil Gorge date back almost 200 million years before the dinosaurs! The Welcome to Devonian Fossil Gorge - A Window into Iowa's Geologic Past brochure is located at the entrance to the fossil area with detailed information. The markers listed in the brochure have all been destroyed by the Floods of 2008, but the information in the brochure is still accurate.  

Read More >
Add Review
Thanks!
Your Rating
1
2
3
4
5

Reviewed by
Amanda_Smith

  • 5 Reviews
  • 6 Helpful
March 29, 2015
Rated 5.0

Amazing stop that was enjoyed by kids and adults alike. Not much walking at all. The map and number plaques on the ground make it easy to find the fossils and structures you're looking for. There's great fossils on the path before you ever hit the stairs. It didn't take long to see, is totally free, and was a highlight of a long road trip. Very highly recommended.

5 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
5Jeeps

  • 6 Reviews
  • 12 Helpful
December 05, 2016

you can actually find a bunch more fossils in the loose rocks over by the dam spillway...from the parking lot head toward the water then follow the road left towards the dam....look at the rocks to the right of the road (when facing the dam)

4 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
kmgrinnell

  • 6 Reviews
  • 4 Helpful
July 22, 2016
Rated 2.0

This was a neat experience, but you had to really search for the fossils. There are places "marked"; however, the map showing what the marked areas represent is up near the parking lot. So, take a picture of the map with your phone, so you know what you're looking at.

3 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
MeganHolthaus

  • 25 Reviews
  • 17 Helpful
March 31, 2018
Rated 4.0

A fun stop to take a break from i-80 and walk around a bit. The fossil gorge is neat, but I'm not really into fossils so I enjoyed hiking around it more than looking for fossils. The river at the end of the gorge is really pretty and there were a lot of people fishing. Drive to the top of the dam for a cool view on the way out.

2 people found this review helpful

Reviewed by
brandicewhitechurch

  • 3 Reviews
  • 1 Helpful
August 19, 2018
Rated 5.0

Great experience! Felt wonderful to be able to “search” for fossils. So easy to find- they were everywhere we looked.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
ericarchrist

  • 24 Reviews
  • 6 Helpful
July 02, 2018
Rated 5.0

This place is fantastic if you enjoy hunting for fossils. We took advantage of the map & phone tour which was great & helped understand what to look for and what we were seeing. The seabed fossils are EVERYWHERE.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
madelineodell

  • 2 Reviews
  • 2 Helpful
December 11, 2017
Rated 5.0

Trilobites, brachiopods, favocites, oh my! Follow the prehistoric trail to find many hidden treasures. Fulfill your inner paleontologist on this worth while adventure.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
alwayswanderlusting

  • 1 Review
  • 1 Helpful
August 18, 2017
Rated 5.0

If you are interested in fossils or are in need of a small activity to stretch your legs this is the place for you! I have a broken kneecap and am on crutches and I was able to carefully make it down and still enjoy myself throughly. The map didn't seem to accurate but I had a fun time trying to find them! The Devonian Fossil Gorge is one of those sites that you can spend as little or as much time as you want and still have a memorable experience.

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
sambeen

  • 4 Reviews
  • 1 Helpful
July 26, 2017
Rated 4.0

Open your eyes and look close. Every inch of this gorge is covered in fossils. Nice lil walk through the gorge that is bordered by a peaceful fish filled river. Nice stop off the highway, definitely recommended if you need to stretch your legs.
Enjoy,
Cool Beens K&S

1 person found this review helpful

Reviewed by
Misty

  • 11 Reviews
  • 3 Helpful
July 05, 2017
Rated 2.0

If you are nearby, stop. But do not go out of your way. I didn't feel like it was well maintained nor was it as easy to "see" the fossils as one might think. Our kids had more fun listening to the frogs and watching the fish in the pools of water that have collected on the site.

1 person found this review helpful

Be the first to add a review to the Devonian Fossil Gorge.

Devonian Fossil Gorge

Coralville Lake, 2850 Prairie Du Chien Rd NE
Iowa City, Iowa
52240 USA

Hours

Open now until 10:00 pm
  • Sun - Sat: 6:00 am - 10:00 pm

Problem with this listing? Let us know.

  • Parking
  • Pets Allowed
  • Restrooms
  • Wifi
  • Wheelchair Accessible
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Outdoor Seating
See More Details (14)

Parking, Dining

Remove Ads

Nearby Hotels

Iowa City, Iowa
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
FastBook
$$

Click to discover a
great deal!

Cedar Rapids, Iowa
FastBook
$

Click to discover a
great deal!

Iowa City, Iowa
FastBook
$$

Click to discover a
great deal!

West Branch, Iowa
FastBook

Click to discover a
great deal!

Related Trip Guides

  • Trip Guide
  • 1 Week

A road trip along the Great River Road

  • 35 Places
  • 37:29
  • 1,907 mi
  • Trip Guide

The top things to do on a U.S. Route 20 road trip

  • 23 Places
  • 60:25
  • 3,576 mi
  • Trip Guide

The top things to do on an I-80 road trip

  • 35 Places
  • 53:41
  • 3,194 mi
Remove Ads
62841