This place ranks right up there as one of the strangest places in Iowa.

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In the Decorah Ice Caves State Preserve you'll find one of the largest caverns containing ice in the Midwest; even in the summer. It's well known for the rare ice deposits inside of that stays icy until late summer. The cave itself was formed in 450-million-year-old limestone and dolomite.

But no matter when you go see this unique natural attraction, you’ll be amazed. According to,

The ice formation is created when the chilly air of winter enters the cave and lowers the rock wall temperature. When spring thaw occurs, surface water seeps into the cave and freezes upon contact with the still-cold walls, and reaches maximum thickness in June. Fall usually sees the cave free of ice, which doesn't return until the following spring.

The preserve is located in the Barbara Barnhard VanPeenen Memorial Park and was given to the Decorah City Parks Commission in 1954. It became a geological state preserve in 1973. You'll find the park at Quarry Street/Ice Cave Road, Decorah, IA. Call ahead for more information 563-382-4158.




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