Bellevue Butterfly Garden – Bellevue, Iowa

bellevuebutterfuly.gif    Bellevue Butterfly Garden – Bellevue, Iowa -

Bellevue State Park has a garden specifically to attract butterflys by providing nectar plants for adults and host plants for caterpillars. Some 60 species of butterflies expected to come to the park each year.

The state park is great for picnickers at the Nelson Unit where they can enjoy beautiful views of the Mississippi River. Open picnic shelters may be reserved for a fee through the park office. The lodge is an ideal spot for group events such as wedding receptions and family events and is available on a reservation basis.

The Dyas Unit has 46 camping units (31 with electrical hookups), modern rest rooms, showers and a sanitary dumping station. Starting February 13, 2006 advance campsite reservations can be booked through the park reservation system. Half of the campsites are still available for self-registration on a first-come, first-serve basis. Camping is not allowed in the Nelson Unit.

In the Nelson Unit, four trails provide a variety of hiking opportunities. One trail leads out to scenic overlook of the Mississippi, one winds past Indian burial mounds, one wanders through a restored prairie and a "Garden Sanctuary for Butterflies", and one takes you past an old limestone rock quarry.

The Dyas Unit encompasses almost 4 miles of foot trails, scenic overlooks, a stream with beaver dams, and aquatic and other wildlife. In winter, bald eagles concentrate to feed near the open waters below Lock and Dam 12. Pileated woodpeckers are occasionally seen in isolated areas.

Location: The park lies in two separate tracts. The Nelson Unit is at the immediate south edge of Bellevue on U.S. 52, atop a 300 foot limestone bluff. The Dyas Unit is two miles further south on U.S. 52.

Address: 24668 Highway 52, Bellevue, Iowa 52031

Phone: 563-872-4019

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