Log In
Join Now

Camping at Pilot Knob State Park

Scan for Cancellations
All campsites booked in Pilot Knob State Park? Create a scan and we’ll notify you when somebody cancels.
Scan for Cancellations

Location and Overview

Pilot Knob State Park is located in north-central Iowa, near the town of Forest City in Winnebago County. The park spans 700 acres and is known for its unique glacially-formed landscape, including Pilot Knob, one of the highest points in Iowa.

Camping Facilities

Camping Options: Pilot Knob State Park offers a variety of camping opportunities including:

  • Electrical Campsites: Equipped with electrical hookups for RVs and trailers.
  • Non-Electrical Campsites: Suitable for tents and smaller camping units.
  • Youth Group Camp: A specialized area reserved for chaperoned youth groups.

Amenities: Common amenities at the campground include modern restrooms, showers, and a dump station. There are also picnic tables, grills, and fire rings available at each campsite.

Reservation Details

Reserve Campsite: Campsites at Pilot Knob can be reserved through the Iowa State Parks reservation system, with a portion of the campground typically available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Reservation Season: Reservations can usually be made up to three months in advance, and there is often a minimum stay requirement for weekends and holidays.

Activities and Attractions

Hiking: The state park features several miles of hiking trails, including the Tower Trail that leads to a historic stone tower providing panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Fishing and Boating: The park has a man-made lake where fishing is available, and although there is no boat ramp, non-motorized boats can be used on the lake.

Horseback Riding: A designated bridle trail is available for horseback riding enthusiasts.

Birding and Wildlife Viewing: The diverse habitats within the park make it an excellent spot for bird watching and observing wildlife.

Winter Sports: In winter, Pilot Knob State Park offers snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, and ice fishing, provided conditions are adequate.

Rules and Regulations

Pets: Pets are allowed in the park but must be kept on a leash and under control at all times.

Alcohol: Alcohol is prohibited in all Iowa state parks, including Pilot Knob.

Quiet Hours: Quiet hours are typically enforced from 10:30 pm to 6:00 am to ensure a peaceful camping experience for all visitors.

Fires: Fires are permitted only in designated fire rings or grilling areas.


ADA Accessible: Efforts have been made to provide ADA-accessible facilities, but visitors with specific accessibility needs should contact the park directly for detailed information.

Contact Information

To get the most current information and for any inquiries, it is best to contact the park directly:

  • Park Office: The phone number for the park office can be found through the Iowa Department of Natural Resources website.
  • Park Address: Pilot Knob State Park, 2148 340th Street, Forest City, IA 50436.

It is advisable to check for any travel advisories, weather updates, or specific park alerts before planning your visit to Pilot Knob State Park.

Map of Campgrounds in Pilot Knob State Park
Campgrounds in Pilot Knob State Park
Scan for Cancellations
All campsites booked in Pilot Knob State Park? Create a scan and we’ll notify you when somebody cancels.
Scan for Cancellations
National Parks Badges

Get The Campsite Reservations You Want

Create a scan to get notified once a reservation opens at a campground you're interested in.