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Desoto National Wildlife Refuge

Address: 1434 316th Lane, Missouri Valley, IA 51555
Phone Number: (712) 642-4121
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Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Nature & Parks
Activities: Birdwatching
Attraction details
Type: Nature/ Wildlife Areas, Nature & Parks
Activities: Birdwatching
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25 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Merrill, Iowa, United States
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2015 NEW

Not only do you get to see wildlife, you also get to tour a ship with all its artifacts. I could return to this place many time and never regret it.

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Omaha, Nebraska
Top Contributor
146 reviews 146 reviews
67 attraction reviews
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2014

This is a nice place to take a day trip. The drive through the refuge is enjoyable and varied. The hiking trails offer a nice nature-viewing activity. We have only been here once since relocating to nearby Omaha, but we plan on returning to see what the other seasons look like at Desoto. It would be nice if authorities could... More 

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Springfield, IL
Top Contributor
180 reviews 180 reviews
95 attraction reviews
97 helpful votes 97 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2014

We came solely to see the exhibit on the Steamboat Bertrand. It was a good exhibit showing the types of cargo that the boat was carrying when it sank. There is a model of the boat as well. While I understand low level lighting is needed for some items, much of what was exhibited doesn't fit that category. It could... More 

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Olympia, Washington
Top Contributor
210 reviews 210 reviews
41 attraction reviews
98 helpful votes 98 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2014

The visitor center here is the nicest I have seen at any NWR. It is large, well designed, well placed, and is chock-a-block with interesting items. The best is the salvage from a sunken steamboat (Bertram). What a treasure trove. The viewing windows and the other exhibits rival any other. The drive around the refuge is great and the walking... More 

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Dublin, Ireland
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
15 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2014

Eleven adults and children drove to DeSoto Bend on Sat. The display about Steamboat Bertram is amazing. The c steamboat sank and the cargo was salvaged, cleaned and preserved for visitors. The National Wildlife Refuge is a stopover for migrating ducks and geese in the autumn.

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Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
17 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2014

This is a lovely place for a pleasant afternoon drive. There is lots of wildlife to see, though we didn't see much the day we went. A very pleasurable way to enjoy nature.

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Saint Louis, Missouri
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2014

I grew up in Nebraska and it wasn't until this year a friend recommended we go see Desoto National Wildlife Refuge. For a nominal fee of $3 (I think) we got access to the refuge for the day. Bring a lunch, bikes, hiking shoes, fishing poles, cameras, or all of the above! We were there during the week, but it... More 

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Cheyenne, Wyoming
Top Contributor
338 reviews 338 reviews
263 attraction reviews
141 helpful votes 141 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2014

I stopped by here for a few hours the other day. The auto tour rout takes you past the Missouri River, as well as past a few small lakes. There are some hiking trails throughout the refuge as well. The visitor's center has some excellent wildlife displays, as well as a gift shop. There is also a small museum with... More 

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Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
14 attraction reviews
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2014

Desoto Bend is a hidden gym on Hwy 30 between Blair Nebraska and Missouri Valley, Iowa. The visitor Center and displays are very informative showcasing the wildlife and flora in the area. Snow a Geese in the spring and fall are a definite highlight, but fun can be found anytime of the year.

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Fort Calhoun, Nebraska
Top Contributor
118 reviews 118 reviews
26 attraction reviews
59 helpful votes 59 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2014

Visited 3/30 on a warm Sunday afternoon. Either due to Winter closures still in effect or migrations in progress a lot of the side roads were closed. But you can still find some nice trails that most everyone can handle near the lake, in a dense wood, etc. There are hides and viewing areas all around, with one really nice... More 

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  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?