Type: Rail Trail

Length: 11 miles

Surface: Crushed Limestone



Grade - Gentle Grades



The Praeri Rail Trail is a 10.5-mile recreational corridor that runs from Roland through McCallsburg to Highway 65 west of Zearing.

The section of abandoned railway was acquired by the county in 1978, and development began in the spring of 1979. The spelling of the word "Praeri" is in recognition of the area's strong Norwegian heritage. Many native prairie remnants can be seen adjacent to the trail. Sections of the trail at Roland and McCallsburg have a limestone surface; the remainder of the trail is mowed grass and may be difficult for all but off-road (mountain) bikes.  Access to the trail is easiest from the Roland City Park at the northeast edge of town (North Park Street and National Street) and from McCallsburg.

Recreational opportunities along the trail include:
  • Summer trail uses such as hiking, biking, jogging, and horseback riding.
  • Winter recreation, including cross-country skiing and snowmobiling.(Snowmobiles are allowed on the trail when there is sufficient snow cover. All other motorized vehicles are prohibited.)
  • Viewing wildlife, picking wild strawberries, raspberries, plums, and mulberries, and enjoying nature.
  • Public hunting - Sections of the trail are open to public hunting and  trapping.  The miles of trail adjacent  to a city boundary are closed to these activities. Only non-toxic ammunition is allowed. No target shooting is allowed. Please get permission to hunt within 200 yards of any occupied buildings.

Location - Where is this Trail?


Runs between Roland and Zearing and parallels E-18.

  • Roland– Trailhead at North Park and National Street.
  • McCallsburgparallel to E-18/ Dubois Avenue/130th St., just east of the railroad tracks.
  • Zearing.25 miles north of 135th Street on the east side of Highway 65 or .05 miles south of Main Street and Highway 65.


Sites & Attractions

History of the Trail


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This trail was last edited by bikeiowa on Mar 25, 2022.

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