"For the lake....." Solon by leics

Solon Travel Guide: 1 reviews and 7 photos

I drove through Solon itself on the way to Lake MacBride State Park, the bit of 'green' I could find nearest to Iowa City. I didn't stop in Solon itself: the page exists so that I can write a little about Lake McBride, a huge (to me) C-shaped lake. But, in truth, there isn't much of Solon to stop and explore anyway. The 2010 census showed just over 2000 inhabitants.

I did notice a most impressive brick State bank, a building I'd guess dates from the late 1800s (Solon, named after an Ancient Greek, first developed during the 1840s). Unfortunately, that part of of Solon's centre was undergoing extensive roadworks and I simply couldn't find anywhere to stop and take a photo.

So...onward to Lake MacBride State Park.....

There had been a rather magnificent thunderstorm in the early morning, and the ground underfoot was still very wet. The parking area, on a midweek mid-morning, was almost empty...just me and a couple of other cars. I didn't explore very far: I had other places to see on my one free driving day.

Lake MacBride is huge (in UK terms), and was further enlarged in 1955: the State Park which lines its shores was opened to the public in 1937. It's the sheer space of the US which amazes me...this place is massive, and pretty empty, and it is really nothing unusual at all. (for the US).

It's not 'wild' though: I felt he park is very much aimed at leisure for families. So there are picnic shelters and short-term lodges for hire, boats and pedalos for the lake, a campsite, a small sandy 'beach area' (which I suspect is not natural)....

There are walking and cycling trails winding through the park, fishing (apparently the lake is very good for fishing), birdwatching (didn't see many myself, suspect they weer all still recovering from the shock of that thunderstorm!). And in winter, snowmobiles and cross-country skiing...

I enjoyed my brief wander, I must admit. If I return to IC, I shall spend a while exploring further, following one of the trails and trying to get into the wilder parts, if there are any.

If you're in the area, this would be an excellent place for a picnic, a 'countryside' walk, a 'breath of fresh air'...

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Trees, water, space.
  • Cons:Bet it's crowded on summer weekends.
  • In a nutshell:A green space to explore.
  • Last visit to Solon: Aug 2012
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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