We recommend the High Trestle Trail! The main attraction of the Trail is just two miles from Madrid: the half-mile long, 13-story High Trestle Trail Bridge over the Des Moines River valley. Whether you live in Central Iowa or are visiting, seeing the Bridge is an exhilarating experience that you won’t forget! The bridge is in Boone County, between Madrid and Woodward, Iowa, less than 30 minutes by car from Des Moines or Ames.
The High Trestle Trail Bridge has lights that are turned on from dusk ’til 9 p.m. through the winter and from dusk to midnight during the spring-summer-fall biking season.
High Trestle Trail Facts
The entire trail is 25 miles long end to end and connects the towns of Ankeny, Sheldahl, Slater, Madrid, and Woodward. A map can be found here (the green line is the trail). The High Trestle Trail Bridge is one of the most spectacular trail bridges in the world! Learn more about its history and creation.
Distances from Madrid
Madrid to bridge overlook (west side) round trip: 6 miles
Madrid to Woodward trailhead round trip: 11 miles
Madrid to Slater round trip: 16 miles
Madrid to Oasis rest area round trip: 26 miles
Madrid to Ankeny round trip: 40 miles
Distance from QF Lane Parking
QF Lane parking area to bridge (east side) round trip: 1.2 miles (popular for walkers and wheelchair users)
QF Lane parking area to bridge overlook (west side) round trip: 2.25 miles (popular for walkers)
Other Nearby Trails
The Ledges State Park has many hiking trails through rugged woodlands and canyons.
Things to Do
In addition to the High Trestle Trail, there are many wonderful attractions in and near Madrid, Iowa. The Madrid Iowa Chamber of Commerce website lists regional attractions and community events; a list of parks is available on the City’s website. You can also find fun things to do in Boone, Boone County Conservation, and in Ames.
Places to Stay
There are many excellent places to spend the night nearby. Stay next door to Trailside Rentals at the Trailside Guest House or the newly remodeled Art House! Camping is available at nearby Swede Point Park.
Area Bike Shops
If you need a bike repair, be sure to stop by Trailside Rentals. We’ll help you get back on the road or direct you to local shop that can help with your problem.
Classic Bike Museum
Dave Johnson, one of the owners of Trailside Rentals, has a large classic bike collection. Ask to see it when you stop by or learn more on the Museum page.