Over 35,000 people of all ages and backgrounds visit the Nature Center annually. The Lime Creek Nature Center Foundation consists of dedicated volunteers who serve as committee members. Through the Lime Creek Nature Center Foundation, the Cerro Gordo County Conservation Board provides environmental education throughout the county.


Over eight miles of trails wind through the various habitats at the Lime Creek Conservation Area, providing an excellent opportunity to view native plants and wildlife in their natural settings. Hikers, cross-country skiers, bicyclists, joggers, horseback riders, photographers, and nature enthusiasts all use these trails. Bicycling and horseback riding are not allowed during the winter season due to the cross-country ski trail grooming. The Easy Access trail is restricted to walking, wheel chair and stroller traffic.


Bow hunting is allowed on Lime Creek Conservation Area designated areas. Bow hunters must register every fall and are required to return a post-season survey. Tree stands cannot be affixed to a tree in any manner which may cause damage to the tree. Gun hunting (shotgun and muzzleloader) is allowed in the Quarry Lake area during appropriate seasons. Check the Iowa DNR website for season dates. All state hunting regulations are enforced.


The Lime Creek Conservation Area trails are groomed for cross-country skiing during the winter months with adequate snowfall. Both diagonal stride and skating trails are groomed for cross country skiing enthusiasts. Horses and bicycles are restricted from trail use during the winter months and other trail users are encouraged to stay off the groomed portions of the trails.


The Winnebago River provides anglers with fishing opportunities for smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, walleye, northern pike, catfish, carp, bullhead, crappie and rock bass. The Quarry Lake has an ample supply of green sunfish to try your luck on.


The area is also listed in the Iowa’s Wildlife Viewing Guide. The Lime Creek Conservation Area is one of 77 areas listed as Iowa’s prime wildlife watching locations. Bird watching opportunities are excellent. The various habitats attract a wide variety of bird and animal species all year long. Bird feeders just outside the nature center’s many windows are kept full year round.


The historic ruins of the Old Brewery are also located on the Lime Creek Conservation Area. The Old Brewery was built in 1873 and served a variety of uses until the 1930’s. The ruins are easily viewed from the “Brewery Loop” trail along the Winnebago River.


Picnic tables and grills are located west and northeast of the Lime Creek Nature Center. Picnic tables are also found at the prairie shelter house north of the parking lot. Firewood is available at the northeast corner of the nature center building. Please carry out your trash.


Lime Creek Conservation Area has two different areas in which primitive camping are allowed, the Bat House and Old Stage Run. Both areas are “carry in” and trash is carry out. Campers must register at the Nature Center Office (M-F 8:00am – 3:30pm) prior to camping and the cost is $5.00 per night (1 tent with 1 bundle of firewood); $1.00 per extra tent per night and additional cost for extra bundles of firewood.


The Lime Creek Conservation Area has a prime example of a restored wetland which is easily viewed from your car or the Whitetail Loop. An observation blind, built as an eagle scout project, provides a closer view of wetland inhabitants. This wetland was constructed in 1998 and has been used by Canada Geese and wood ducks for nesting. Numerous waterfowl utilize this wetland during migrations.


A wide variety of trees species grow on the Lime Creek Conservation Area, including a mixed species floodplain forest. The Lime Creek Conservation Area is also a prime location to view a large variety of woodland wildflowers. An educational/demonstration windbreak is located north of the shop buildings.


Restored native prairie and prairie seed production plots can be found on the Lime Creek Conservation Area. The largest segment of restored prairie was established in 1984. Seed harvested from the production plots within the Barred Owl Loop is used to restore prairie on public areas throughout the county.

The Lime Creek Nature Center Foundation consists of twelve volunteer board members that meet the first Tuesday of every month at 7:00 P.M. at the Lime Creek Nature Center.


Denise WoodPresident
Shannon AndersonVice President
Katie ByerlySecretary / Treasurer