Thursday, May 19, 2016
Final connection improvements on the east end of the Great Western Trail extension are in progress. These improvements should be wrapped up by the beginning of June. Trails users may need to dismount their bicycles and walk around the construction area.
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources will relax fishing regulations at Easter Lake in Polk County starting on June 1st, 2016, to allow anglers to more freely harvest game fish before the lake is renovated in 2017.
Anglers with a valid fishing license will be allowed to harvest any size or number of largemouth bass, channel catfish, and all other fish species from Easter Lake. Any number of fishing poles or jug fishing will be allowed. Anglers must remain in sight of these lines at all times, and follow all other fishing regulations and area rules. Trot lines will be allowed (name and address must be attached), however lines may not be set across the entire water body. It is illegal to sell fish or stock captured fish into public waters. Please note that due to the dredging pipe and dredge being in the lake, Polk County Conservation will not allow any boating activities on the lake during this project.
Plans to eliminate undesirable fish species, such as gizzard shad and common carp are part of a plan to further improve the lake’s water quality and recreational opportunities.
Liberalized fishing regulations for Easter Lake will remain in effect from June 1st, 2016 through June 1st, 2017. Specific regulation changes include:
• Removal of bag and length limit restrictions on largemouth bass.
• Removal of bag limit on walleye.
• Removal of bag limit on channel catfish.
• Removal of bag limit on crappie and bluegill.
• Removal of the two line/two hook fishing restriction, however anglers must still adhere to the being within visual sight of the lines.
It is very important that anglers never transport and release common carp or any fish species into any water body. Gizzard shad and common carp populations in Easter Lake have reduced game fish populations, decreased water quality and limited fishing activity. All lake water from live wells and bait buckets must be drained before you leave the boat ramp.
For more information contact Iowa DNR Fisheries Biologist Ben Dodd at 641-891-3795.
Thursday, April 14, 2016
To celebrate Polk County Conservation's 60th Anniversary in 2016, we are kicking off a Geocaching Parks Challenge! We want to encourage you to get outside and explore our county parks and trails and we think geocaching is a great way to learn about them. Geocaching is a high tech scavenger hunt using GPS. We have worked with local geocachers to hide geocaches in 16 different Polk County parks and trails. Once all 16 geocaches have been found, individuals must turn in their passport to claim their reward - a special geocoin! By the end of the challenge, we hope you'll know where there are tons of cool places to hike, bike, camp, and explore. Locations to the geocaches can be found on www.geocaching.com!
Click here to learn more about the Parks Challenge and to get started!
Friday, April 01, 2016
Campgrounds in all Polk County parks are now open for the 2016 camping season. Water and showerhouse services are expected to be fully operational by Friday, April 15th.
Monday, March 28, 2016
The May-August 2016 Nature News is now available. Find the most current listing of our programs and events on our calendar by clicking here. To download a copy of the latest Nature News, Click here.
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
An updated flyer with detailed park enhancement descriptions, map and timeline for Fort Des Moines Park is now available to view by clicking here. Major construction will occur from December 2015 through October 2016. The park will remain open during this time, however, short term closures may be necessary to ensure public safety.