Notice of Intended Action

State parks, recreation areas, and state forest camping, ch 61

Untitled document

ARC 7509C

NATURAL RESOURCE COMMISSION[571]

Notice of Intended Action

Proposing rulemaking related to state parks, recreation areas, and state forest camping

and providing an opportunity for public comment

The Natural Resource Commission (Commission) hereby proposes to rescind Chapter 61, "State Parks, Recreation Areas, and State Forest Camping," Iowa Administrative Code, and to adopt a new chapter with the same title.

Legal Authority for Rulemaking

This rulemaking is proposed under the authority provided in Iowa Code sections 422.43, 455A.4, 461A.3, 461A.3A, 461A.35, 461A.38, 461A.39, 461A.42, 461A.43, 461A.45 through 461A.51, 461A.57, and 723.4 and chapter 724.

State or Federal Law Implemented

This rulemaking implements, in whole or in part, Iowa Code sections 422.43, 455A.4, 461A.3, 461A.3A, 461A.35, 461A.38, 461A.39, 461A.42, 461A.43, 461A.45 through 461A.51, 461A.57, and 723.4 and chapter 724.

Purpose and Summary

Chapter 61 provides guidance and definitions for citizens of Iowa and other visitors who use state parks, recreation areas, and state forests for camping, facility rentals, and other recreational uses.

Consistent with Executive Order 10 and the five-year review of rules required by Iowa Code section 17A.7(2), this chapter is proposed to be edited for length and clarity. Specifically, there are lists of state parks, preserves, and areas managed by other governmental agencies that are proposed to be removed from this chapter. Also, the proposed rulemaking removes the word "possession" from the Mines of Spain firearm limitations consistent with Iowa law, adds protected nesting periods to access parameters for hunting areas or training areas for dogs, and bases damage deposit refunds on an hourly fee instead of an hourly wage of employees.

Fiscal Impact

This rulemaking has no fiscal impact to the State of Iowa.

Jobs Impact

After analysis and review of this rulemaking, no impact on jobs has been found.

Waivers

This rulemaking is subject to the waiver provisions of 571—Chapter 11. Any person who believes that the application of the discretionary provisions of this rulemaking would result in hardship or injustice to that person may petition the Commission for a waiver of the discretionary provisions, if any.

Public Comment

Any interested person may submit written comments concerning this proposed rulemaking. Written comments in response to this rulemaking must be received by the Department of Natural Resources no later than 4:30 p.m.on February 15, 2024. Comments should be directed to:

Jessica Manken

Iowa Department of Natural Resources

Wallace State Office Building

502 East Ninth Street

Des Moines, Iowa 50319

Email:jessica.manken@dnr.iowa.gov

Public Hearing

Public hearings at which persons may present their views orally or in writing will be held as follows:

February 13, 2024

12 noon to 1 p.m.

Conference Room 4E

Wallace State Office Building

Des Moines, Iowa

February 15, 2024

4 to 5 p.m.

Conference Room 4E

Wallace State Office Building

Des Moines, Iowa

Persons who wish to make oral comments at a public hearing will be asked to state their names for the record and to confine their remarks to the subject of this proposed rulemaking.

The hearing will also be available online. Persons who wish to attend the conference call or Google Meet virtual meeting should contact Jessica Manken via email.

Any persons who intend to attend a hearing and have special requirements, such as those related to hearing or mobility impairments, should contact the Department and advise of specific needs.

Review by Administrative Rules Review Committee

The Administrative Rules Review Committee, a bipartisan legislative committee which oversees rulemaking by executive branch agencies, may, on its own motion or on written request by any individual or group, review this rulemaking at its regular monthly meeting or at a special meeting. The Committee's meetings are open to the public, and interested persons may be heard as provided in Iowa Code section 17A.8(6).

The following rulemaking action is proposed:

Item 1. Rescind 571—Chapter 61 and adopt the following new chapter in lieu thereof:

TITLE VI

PARKS AND RECREATION AREAS

CHAPTER 61

STATE PARKS, RECREATION AREAS, AND STATE FOREST CAMPING

571—61.1(461A) Definitions.

"Bank" or "shoreline" means the zone of contact of a body of water with the land and an area within 25 feet of the water's edge.

"Basic unit" or "basic camping unit" means the portable shelter used by one to six persons.

"Beach" means the same as defined in rule 571—64.1(461A).

"Beach house open shelter" means a building located on the beach that is open on two or more sides and that may or may not have a fireplace.

"Cabin" means a dwelling available for rental on a nightly or weekly basis. Cabins may or may not contain restroom and kitchen facilities.

"Camping" means erecting a tent, hammock, or shelter of natural or synthetic material; placing a sleeping bag or other bedding material on the ground; or parking a motor vehicle, motor home, or trailer for the apparent purpose of overnight occupancy.

"Centralized reservation system" means a system that processes reservations using more than one method to accept reservations. Each method simultaneously communicates to a centralized database at a reservation contractor location to ensure that no campsite or rental facility is booked more than once.

"Chaperoned, organized youth group" means a group of persons 17 years of age and under, which is sponsored by and accompanied by adult representatives of a formal organization including, but not limited to, the Boy Scouts of America or Girl Scouts of America, a church, or Young Men's or Young Women's Christian Association. "Chaperoned, organized youth group" does not include family members of a formal organization.

"Fishing" means the same as described in Iowa Code sections 481A.72, 461A.42 and 481A.76.

"Free climbing" means climbing with the use of hands and feet only and without the use of ropes, pins and other devices normally associated with rappelling and rock climbing.

"Group camp" means the camping area at Lake Keomah State Park where organized groups (e.g., family groups or youth groups) may camp. Dining hall facilities are available.

"Immediate family" means spouses, parents or legal guardians, domestic partners, dependent children and grandparents.

"Lodge" means a day-use building that is enclosed on all four sides and may have kitchen facilities such as a stove or refrigerator and that is available for rent on a daily basis. "Lodge" does not include buildings that are open on two or more sides and that contain fireplaces only.

"Modern area" means a camping area that has showers and flush toilets.

"Nonmodern area" means a camping area in which no showers are provided and that contains only pit-type latrines or flush-type toilets. Potable water may or may not be available to campers.

"Open shelter" means a building that is open on two or more sides and that may or may not include a fireplace.

"Open shelter with kitchenette" means a building that is open on two or more sides and contains a lockable, enclosed kitchen area.

"Organized youth group campsite" means a designated camping area within or next to the main campground where chaperoned, organized youth groups may camp.

"Person with a physical disability" means any of the following: an individual, commonly termed a paraplegic or quadriplegic, with paralysis or a physical condition of the lower half of the body with the involvement of both legs, usually due to disease or injury to the spinal cord; a person who is a single or double amputee of the legs; or a person with any other physical affliction that makes it impossible to ambulate successfully in park or recreation area natural surroundings without the use of a wheeled conveyance.

"Possession" means the same as defined in Iowa Code section 481A.1(27).

"Prohibited activity" means any activity other than fishing as defined in this chapter including, but not limited to, picnicking and camping.

"Property" means personal property such as goods, money, or domestic animals.

"Recreation areas" means the following areas that have been designated by action of the commission:

Area

County

Badger Creek Recreation Area

Madison

Brushy Creek Recreation Area

Webster

Clair Wilson Park

Dickinson

Emerson Bay and Lighthouse

Dickinson

Fairport Recreation Area

Muscatine

Lower Gar Access

Dickinson

Marble Beach

Dickinson

Mines of Spain Recreation Area

Dubuque

Pleasant Creek Recreation Area

Linn

Templar Park

Dickinson

Volga River Recreation Area

Fayette

Wilson Island Recreation Area

Pottawattamie

"Refuse" means trash, garbage, rubbish, waste papers, bottles or cans, debris, litter, oil, solvents, liquid or solid waste or other discarded material.

"Rental facilities" means facilities that may be rented on a daily or nightly basis and includes open shelters, open shelters with kitchenettes, beach house open shelters, warming lodges, lodges, cabins, yurts and group camps.

"Reservation window" means a rolling period of time in which a person may reserve a campsite or rental facility.

"Scuba diving" means swimming with the aid of self-contained underwater breathing apparatus.

"State park" means areas managed by the state and designated by action of the commission and listed on the department's website at www.iowadnr.gov.

"State park managed by another governmental entity" means areas designated by action of the commission and listed on the department's website at www.iowadnr.gov.

"State preserve" means the areas or portions of the areas dedicated by actions pursuant to Iowa Code section 465C.10 and listed on the department's website at www.iowadnr.gov.

"Swim" or "swimming" means to propel oneself in water by natural means, such as movement of limbs, and includes but is not limited to wading and the use of inner tubes or beach toy-type swimming aids.

"Walk-in camper" means a person arriving at a campground without a reservation and wishing to occupy a first-come, first-served campsite or unrented, reservable campsite.

"Yurt" means a one-room circular fabric structure built on a platform that is available for rental on a nightly or weekly basis.

571—61.2(461A) Centralized reservation system. The centralized reservation system of the department accepts and processes reservations for camping, rental facilities, and other special privileges in state parks, recreation areas, and state forests. The system is accessible through the department's website at www.iowadnr.gov. The operating policies and procedures for the centralized reservation system are available upon request.

571—61.3(461A) Camping in state parks and recreation areas.

61.3(1) Procedures for camping registration.

a. Registration of walk-in campers occupying nonreservable campsites or unrented, reservable campsites will be on a first-come, first-served basis and will be handled by a self-registration process. Registration forms will be provided by the department. Campers shall, within one-half hour of arrival at the campground, complete the registration form, place the appropriate fee in the envelope and place the envelope in the depository provided by the department. One copy of the registration form must then be placed in the campsite holder provided at the campsite. The camping length of stay identified on the camping registration form must begin with the actual date the camper registers, pays and posts the registration at the campsite.

b. Campsites are considered occupied and registration for a campsite shall be considered complete when the requirements of paragraph 61.3(1)"a" have been met.

c. Campsite registration must be in the name of a person 18 years of age or older who will occupy the camping unit on that site for the full term of the registration.

61.3(2) Organized youth group campsite registration.

a. Registration procedures for organized youth group campsites shall be governed by paragraphs 61.3(1)"a," "b" and "c."

b. A chaperoned, organized youth group may choose to occupy campsites not designated as organized youth group campsites. However, the group is subject to subrules 61.3(1), 61.3(3) and 61.3(5) pertaining to the campsite the group wishes to occupy.

61.3(3) Restrictions on campsite/campground use. This subrule sets forth conditions of public use that apply to all state parks and recreation areas. Specific areas as listed in subrule 61.3(4), rule 571—61.10(461A) and rule 571—61.13(461A) are subject to additional restrictions or exceptions. The conditions in this subrule are in addition to specific conditions and restrictions set forth in Iowa Code chapter 461A.

a. No more than six persons shall occupy a campsite except for the following:

(1)Families that exceed six persons may be allowed on one campsite if all members are immediate family and cannot logically be split to occupy two campsites.

(2)Campsites that are designated as chaperoned, organized youth group campsites.

b. Camping is restricted to one basic unit per site except that a small tent or hammock may be placed on a site with the basic unit.

c. Each camping group shall utilize only the electrical outlet fixture designated for its particular campsite.

d. Each camping group will be permitted to park one motor vehicle not being used for camping purposes at the campsite. Unless otherwise posted, one additional vehicle may be parked at the campsite.

e. All motor vehicles, excluding motorcycles, not covered by the provision in paragraph 61.3(3)"d" shall be parked in designated extra-vehicle parking areas.

f. Walk-in campers occupying nonreservable campsites or unrented, reservable campsites shall register as provided in subrule 61.3(1) within one-half hour of entering the campground.

g. Campers occupying nonreservable campsites shall vacate the campground or register for the night prior to 3 p.m.daily. Registration can be for more than 1 night at a time but not for more than 14 consecutive nights for nonreservable campsites. All members of the camping party must vacate the state park or recreation area campground after the fourteenth night and may not return to the state park or recreation area until a minimum of three nights has passed. All equipment must be removed from the site at the end of each stay. The 14-night limitation shall not apply to volunteers working under a department program.

h. Walk-in campers shall not occupy unrented, reservable campsites until 10 a.m.on the first camping day of their stay. Campers shall vacate the campground by 3 p.m.of the last day of their stay. Initial registration shall not exceed two nights. Campers may continue to register after the first 2 nights on a night-to-night basis up to a maximum of 14 consecutive nights, subject to campsite availability. All members of the camping party must vacate the state park, recreation area, or state forest campground after the fourteenth night and may not return to the state park, recreation area, or forest campground until a minimum of three nights has passed. All equipment must be removed from the site at the end of each stay. The 14-night limitation shall not apply to volunteers working under a department program.

i. Campers with reservations shall not occupy a campsite before 4 p.m.of the first day of their stay. Campers shall vacate the site by 3 p.m.of the last day of their stay. Campers may register for more than 1 night at a time but not for more than 14 consecutive nights. All members of the camping party must vacate the state park or recreation area campground after the fourteenth night and may not return to the state park or recreation area until a minimum of three nights has passed. All equipment must be removed from the site at the end of each stay. The 14-night limitation shall not apply to volunteers working under a department program.

j. Minimum stay requirements for camping reservations. From May 1 to October 31, a two-night minimum stay is required for weekends. The two nights shall be designated as Friday and Saturday nights. However, if October 31 is a Friday, the Friday and Saturday night stay shall not apply. If October 31 is a Saturday, the Friday and Saturday night stay shall apply. The following additional exceptions apply:

(1)A Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night stay is required for the national Memorial Day holiday and national Labor Day holiday weekends.

(2)A Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night stay is required for the Fourth of July holiday when the Fourth of July occurs on a Monday.

(3)Exception to the paragraph 571—61.3(3)"j" stay requirement. For campgrounds that are 100 percent reservable, with no walk-in sites, customers can reserve a Saturday stay if the Friday/Saturday stay is not reserved before the booking cut-off time has passed to make a Friday/Saturday stay reservation.

(4)Exception to the subparagraphs 571—61.3(3)"j"(1) and (2) stay requirements. For campgrounds that are 100 percent reservable, with no walk-in sites, customers can reserve a Saturday or Sunday separately if the Friday/Saturday/Sunday is not reserved before the booking cut-off time has passed to make a three-night reservation.

k. Buddy campsite reservations. Buddy campsites are between two to four individual sites that are grouped together and can only be reserved and used collectively. Campers reserving buddy campsites through the centralized reservation system must reserve both or all four of the individual sites that make up the group buddy campsite or buddy campsite.

l. In designated campgrounds, equine animals and llamas must be stabled at a hitching rail, individual stall or corral if provided. Equine animals and llamas may be hitched to trailers for short periods of time to allow for grooming and saddling. These animals may be stabled inside trailers if no hitching facilities are provided. Portable stalls/pens and electric fences are not permitted.

m. Campers shall use only straps to secure hammocks to trees on campsites. Straps must be a minimum of one inch wide.

n. Special events. The department director or director's authorized representative may authorize camping in areas outside designated campgrounds for certain special events as defined in rule 571—44.2(321G,321I,461A,462A,481A). Requests shall be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and permitted under the provisions of 571—Chapter 44.

61.3(4) Area-specific restrictions on campground use. In addition to the general conditions of public use set forth in this chapter, special conditions shall apply to specific areas listed as follows:

a. Brushy Creek Recreation Area, Webster County.

(1)In the designated equestrian campgrounds, the maximum number of equine animals to be tied to the hitching rails is six. Persons with a number of equine animals in excess of the number permitted on the hitching rail at their campsite shall be allowed to stable their additional animals in a trailer or register and pay for an additional campsite if available.

(2)In the designated equestrian campgrounds, equine animals may be tied to trailers for short periods of time to allow grooming or saddling; however, the tying of equine animals to the exterior of trailers for extended periods of time or for stabling is not permitted.

b. Recreation area campgrounds. Access into and out of designated campgrounds shall be permitted from 4 a.m.to 10:30 p.m.From 10:31 p.m.to 3:59 a.m., only registered campers are permitted in and out of the campgrounds.

c. Lake Manawa State Park, Pottawattamie County. Except for the following limitations on campground length of stay, campsite use restrictions as stated in subrule 61.3(3) shall apply to Lake Manawa. Campers may register for more than 1 night at a time but not for more than 14 consecutive nights. No person may camp at the Lake Manawa campground for more than 14 nights in any 30-day period.

d. Walnut Woods State Park, Polk County. Except for the following limitations on campground length of stay, campsite use restrictions as stated in subrule 61.3(3) shall apply to Walnut Woods. Campers may register for more than 1 night at a time but not for more than 14 consecutive nights. No person may camp at the Walnut Woods campground for more than 14 nights in any 30-day period.

61.3(5) Campground fishing. Rule 571—61.13(461A) is not intended to prohibit fishing by registered campers who fish from the shoreline within the camping area.

571—61.4(461A) State forest camping areas established and marked.

61.4(1) Areas to be utilized for camping shall be established within the following state forests:

a. Shimek State Forest in Lee and Van Buren Counties.

b. Stephens State Forest in Appanoose, Clarke, Davis, Lucas and Monroe Counties.

c. Yellow River State Forest in Allamakee County.

61.4(2) Signs designating the established camping areas shall be posted along the access roads into these areas and around the perimeter of the area designated for camping use.

61.4(3) Areas approved for backpack camping (no vehicular access) shall be marked with appropriate signs and shall contain fire rings.

571—61.5(461A) Campground reservations. Procedures and policies regarding camping reservations in established state forest campgrounds shall be the same as those cited in rule 571—61.2(461A). Reservations will not be accepted for backpack campsites.

571—61.6(461A) Camping fees and registration.

61.6(1) Fees.

a. Backpack campsites. No fee will be charged for the use of the designated backpack campsites.

b. The fees for camping in established state forest campgrounds shall be set by the department pursuant to 561—Chapter 16.

61.6(2) Procedures for camping registration.

a. Backpack campsites. Persons using backpack campsites shall register at the forest area check station or other designated site.

b. The procedures for camping registration in established state forest campgrounds shall be the same as those cited in paragraphs 61.3(1)"a," "b," and "c."

c. Organized youth group campsites. The procedures for camping registration for organized youth group campsites shall be the same as those cited in subrule 61.3(2).

571—61.7(461A) State forest camping restrictions—area and use.

61.7(1) Restrictions of campsite or campground use in established state forest campgrounds shall be the same as those cited in paragraphs 61.3(3)"a," "b," "d" through "j," and "l" through "n."

61.7(2) Hours. Access into and out of the established camping areas shall be permitted from 4 a.m.to 10:30 p.m.From 10:31 p.m.to 3:59 a.m., only registered campers are permitted in the campgrounds.

61.7(3) Firearms use prohibited. Except for peace officers acting in the scope of their employment, the use of firearms, fireworks, explosives, and weapons of all kinds by the public is prohibited within the established camping area as delineated by signs marking the area.

571—61.8(461A) Rental facilities.

61.8(1) Procedures for rental facility registration.

a. Registrations for all rental facilities must be in the name of a person 18 years of age or older who will be present at the facility for the full term of the reservation.

b. Rental stay requirements for cabins and yurts.

(1)Except as provided in subparagraphs 61.8(1)"b"(2) and 61.8(1)"b"(3), cabins and yurts may be reserved for a minimum of two nights throughout the entire season.

(2)Cabins and yurts must be reserved for a minimum of three nights (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights) for the national Memorial Day holiday weekend, the Fourth of July holiday weekend when the Fourth of July occurs on a Monday, and the national Labor Day holiday weekend.

(3)The department may require cabins with restroom and kitchen facilities to be reserved for a minimum stay of one week (Friday p.m.to Friday a.m.) during the time period beginning with the Friday of the national Memorial Day holiday weekend and ending with the Thursday after the national Labor Day holiday.

(4)All unreserved cabins, all unreserved yurts and the group camp must be rented for a minimum of two nights on a walk-in first-come, first-served basis. No walk-in rentals will be permitted after 6 p.m.

(5)Reservations or walk-in rentals for more than a two-week stay will not be accepted for any facility.

c. Persons renting cabins, yurts or the group camp facility must check in at or after 4 p.m.on the first day of the rental period. Check-out time is 11 a.m.or earlier on the last day of the rental period.

d. Except by arrangement for late arrival with the park staff, no cabin, yurt or group camp reservation will be held past 6 p.m.on the first night of the reservation period if the person reserving the facility does not arrive. When arrangements for late arrival have been made, the person must appear prior to the park's closing time established by Iowa Code section 461A.46 or access will not be permitted to the facility until 8 a.m.the following day. Arrangements must be made with the park staff if next-day arrival is to be later than 9 a.m.

e. Except at parks or recreation areas with camping cabins or yurts, no tents or other camping units are permitted for overnight occupancy in the designated cabin area. One small tent shall be allowed at each cabin or yurt in the designated areas and is subject to the occupancy requirements of paragraph 61.3(3)"b."

f. Open shelters and beach house open shelters that are not reserved are available on a first-come, first-served basis. If the open shelters with kitchenettes are not reserved, the open shelter portions of these facilities are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

g. Except by arrangement with the park staff in charge of the area, persons renting a lodge, shelter, or beach house open shelter facility and all guests shall vacate the facility by 10 p.m.

61.8(2) Damage deposits for cabins, lodges, open shelters with kitchenettes, and yurts.

a. Renters shall pay in full a damage deposit equal to the weekend daily or nightly rental fee for the facility or $50, whichever is greater, by the established deadline for the facility. If a gathering with keg beer takes place in a lodge or open shelter with kitchenette, the damage deposit shall be waived in lieu of a keg damage deposit as specified in 571—subrule 63.5(3) if the keg damage deposit is greater than the lodge or open shelter with kitchenette damage deposit.

b. Damage deposits will be refunded only after authorized personnel inspect the facility to ensure that the facility and furnishings are in satisfactory condition.

c. If it is necessary for department personnel to clean up the facility or repair any damage beyond ordinary wear and tear, a log of the time spent in such cleanup or repair shall be kept. The damage deposit refund shall be reduced by the applicable hourly fee for the time necessary to clean the area or repair the damage and by the cost of any repairs of furnishings.

d. The deposit is not to be construed as a limit of liability for damage to state property. The department may take legal action necessary to recover additional damages.

571—61.9(461A) Wet and dry storage for vessels. The department may provide limited temporary vessel storage for individuals who own vessels that are actively used on waters in state parks and recreation areas.

61.9(1) Vessel storage fees. A person who fails to pay a vessel storage fee by the established payment due date shall forfeit the slip assignment.

61.9(2) Storage slip assignment.

a. Slip assignments shall be made on a first-come, first-served basis. Park staff may establish a waiting list upon receiving more requests for storage slips than the number of slips available. The waiting list shall be maintained in chronological order of the requests received.

b. Slip assignments shall be valid for one year with the option to renew annually.

c. In the event a person on a waiting list refuses a specific slip assignment, the person's name will be removed from the waiting list.

61.9(3) Storage slip requirements and conditions.

a. Each storage slip is limited to no more than one vessel at any given time.

b. All vessels in a storage slip must have a current boat registration.

c. Slip assignments must be in the same name of the person to whom the vessel that will occupy the slip is registered.

d. Dry storage slips shall be maintained in a clean and orderly manner. Failure to maintain the slip in a satisfactory condition will result in forfeiture of the slip assignment and any storage fees paid.

e. Slip assignments are not transferable.

571—61.10(461A) Restrictions—area and use. This rule sets forth conditions of public use that apply to all state parks and recreation areas. Specific areas as listed in subrule 61.3(4), rule 571—61.11(461A) and rule 571—61.14(461A) are subject to additional restrictions or exceptions. The conditions in this rule are in addition to specific conditions and restrictions set forth in Iowa Code chapter 461A.

61.10(1) Animals.

a. The use of equine animals and llamas is limited to roadways or to trails designated for such use.

b. Animals are prohibited within designated beach areas.

c. Livestock are not permitted to graze or roam within state parks and recreation areas. The owner of the livestock shall remove the livestock immediately upon notification by department personnel in charge of the area.

d. Animals are prohibited in all park buildings, with the following exceptions:

(1)Service dogs and assistive animals.

(2)Dogs in designated cabins and yurts. A maximum of two dogs of any size shall be allowed in any designated cabin or yurt.

(3)Animals being used in education and interpretation programs.

e. Except for dogs being used in designated hunting areas during hunting season or in designated dog training areas outside of the nesting period closure from March 15 to July 15, pets such as dogs or cats shall not be allowed to run at large within state parks, recreation areas, or preserves. Such animals shall be on a leash or chain not to exceed six feet in length and shall be either led by or carried by the owner, attached to an anchor/tie-out or vehicle, or confined in a vehicle. Pets shall not be left unattended in campgrounds. Dogs shall be kenneled when left unattended in a cabin or yurt and shall not be left unattended if tied up outside of the cabin or yurt.

61.10(2) Beach use/swimming.

a. All swimming shall take place between sunrise and sunset. Swimming is prohibited between sunset and sunrise.

b. Except as provided in paragraphs 61.10(2)"c" and "d," all swimming and scuba diving shall take place in the beach area within the boundaries marked by ropes, buoys, or signs within state parks and recreation areas. Inner tubes, air mattresses and other beach-type items shall be used only in designated beach areas.

c. Persons may scuba dive in areas other than the designated beach area provided they display the diver's flag as specified in rule 571—41.10(462A).

d. Swimming outside beach area.

(1)Persons may swim outside the beach area under the following conditions:

1.The swimmer must be accompanied by a person operating a vessel and must stay within 20 feet of the vessel at all times during the swim;

2.The vessel accompanying the swimmer must display a flag, which is at least 12 inches square, is bright orange, and is visible all around the horizon; and

3.The person swimming pursuant to this subparagraph must register with the park staff in charge of the area and sign a registration immediately prior to the swim.

(2)Unless swimming is otherwise posted as prohibited or limited to the designated beach area, a person may also swim outside the beach area provided that the person swims within ten feet of a vessel which is anchored not less than 100 yards from the shoreline or the marked boundary of a designated beach. Any vessel, except one being uprighted, must be attended at all times by at least one person remaining on board.

(3)A passenger on a sailboat or other vessel may enter the water to upright or repair the vessel and must remain within ten feet of that vessel.

e. The provisions of paragraph 61.10(2)"a" shall not be construed as prohibiting wading in areas other than the beach by persons actively engaged in shoreline fishing.

f. Alcoholic liquor, beer, and wine, as each is defined in Iowa Code section 123.3, are prohibited on the beaches located within Lake Macbride State Park and Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area. This ban does not apply to rental facilities located within the 200-foot buffer of land surrounding the sand or fenced-in area that have been officially reserved through the department.

61.10(3) Bottles. Possession or use of breakable containers, the fragmented parts of which can injure a person, is prohibited in beach areas of state parks and recreation areas.

61.10(4) Chainsaws. Except by written permission of the director of the department, chainsaw use is prohibited in state parks and recreation areas. This provision is not applicable to employees of the department in the performance of their official duties.

61.10(5) Firearms. The use of firearms in state parks and recreation areas as defined in rule 571—61.1(461A) is limited to the following:

a. Lawful hunting as traditionally allowed at Badger Creek Recreation Area, Brushy Creek Recreation Area, Pleasant Creek Recreation Area, Mines of Spain Recreation Area (pursuant to rule 571—61.12(461A)), Volga River Recreation Area and Wilson Island Recreation Area.

b. Target and practice shooting in areas designated by the department.

c. Special events, festivals, and education programs sponsored or permitted by the department.

d. Special hunts authorized by the commission to control animal populations.

61.10(6) Fishing off boat docks within state areas. Persons may fish off all state-owned docks within state parks and recreation areas. Persons fishing off these docks must yield to boats and not interfere with boaters.

61.10(7) Garbage. Using government refuse receptacles for dumping household, commercial, or industrial refuse brought as such from private property is prohibited.

61.10(8) Motor vehicle restrictions.

a. Except as provided in these rules, motor vehicles are prohibited on state parks, recreation areas and preserves except on constructed and designated roads, parking lots and campgrounds.

b. Use of motorized vehicles by persons with a physical disability. Persons with a physical disability may use certain motorized vehicles to access specific areas in state parks, recreation areas and preserves, according to restrictions set out in this paragraph, or otherwise provided for by department other power-driven mobility device (OPDMD) processes, in order to enjoy the same recreational opportunities available to others.

(1)Reasonable accommodations. Each person with a physical disability or mobility impairment may request a reasonable accommodation to park or recreation area staff in order to use an OPDMD within state parks, recreation areas, and preserves. Reasonable accommodation requests are considered on a case-by-case basis based on the facts and circumstances and considering need, protection of the permit holder, protection of other users, and protection of natural resources consistent with relevant state and federal law.

(2)Permits. Except where areas or trails are preapproved for OPDMD use, persons with a physical disability or mobility impairment must have a permit issued by park or recreation area staff in order to use a motorized vehicle in specific, approved areas within state parks, recreation areas, and preserves.

(3)One companion may accompany the OPDMD user on the same vehicle if that vehicle is designed for more than one rider; otherwise, the companion must walk.

(4)Exclusive use. The issuance of a permit does not imply that the permittee has exclusive or indiscriminate use of an area. Permittees shall take reasonable care not to unduly interfere with the use of the area by others.

(5)Prohibited acts and restrictions.

1.Except as provided in paragraph 61.10(8)"b," the use of a motorized vehicle on any park, recreation area or preserve by a person without a valid permit or at any site not approved on a signed map is prohibited. Permits and maps shall be carried by the permittee at any time the permittee is using a motorized vehicle in a park, recreation area or preserve and shall be exhibited to any department employee or law enforcement official upon request.

2.The speed limit for an approved motorized vehicle off-road will be no more than 3 miles per hour, unless otherwise approved in writing. The permit of a person who is found exceeding the speed limit will be revoked.

3.The permit of any person who is found causing damage to cultural and natural features or abusing the privilege of riding off-road within the park will be revoked, and restitution for damages or other remedies available under the law may be sought.

61.10(9) Noise. Creating or sustaining any unreasonable noise in any portion of any state park or recreation area is prohibited at all times. The nature and purpose of a person's conduct, the impact on other area users, the time of day, location, and other factors that would govern the conduct of a reasonable, prudent person under the circumstances shall be used to determine whether the noise is unreasonable. Between the hours of 10:30 p.m.and 6 a.m., noise that can be heard at a distance of 120 feet or three campsites shall be considered unreasonable.

61.10(10) Opening and closing times. Except by arrangement or permission granted by the director or the director's authorized representative or as otherwise stated in this chapter, the following restrictions shall apply: All persons shall vacate all state parks and preserves before 10:30 p.m.each day, except authorized campers in accordance with Iowa Code section 461A.46, and no person shall enter into such parks and preserves until 4 a.m.the following day.

61.10(11) Paintball guns. The use of any item generally referred to as a paintball gun is prohibited in state parks, recreation areas and preserves.

61.10(12) Rock climbing or rappelling. The rock climbing practice known as free climbing and climbing or rappelling activities that utilize bolts, pitons, or similar permanent anchoring equipment or ropes, harnesses, or slings are prohibited in state parks and recreation areas, except by persons or groups registered with the park staff in charge of the area. Individual members of a group must each sign a registration. Climbing or rappelling will not be permitted at Elk Rock State Park, Marion County; Ledges State Park, Boone County; Dolliver Memorial State Park, Webster County; Stone State Park, Woodbury and Plymouth Counties; Maquoketa Caves State Park, Jackson County; Wildcat Den State Park, Muscatine County; or Mines of Spain Recreation Area, Dubuque County. Other sites may be closed to climbing or rappelling if environmental damage or safety problems occur or if an endangered or threatened species is present.

61.10(13) Speech or conduct interfering with lawful use of an area by others.

a. Speech commonly perceived as offensive or abusive is prohibited when such speech interferes with lawful use and enjoyment of the area by another member of the public.

b. Quarreling or fighting is prohibited when it interferes with the lawful use and enjoyment of the area by another member of the public.

61.10(14) Animal population control hunts. Animal hunting as allowed under Iowa Code section 461A.42(1)"c" shall be designated annually by the commission. During the dates of special hunts, only persons participating in special hunts shall use the area or portions thereof as designated by the department and signed as such.

571—61.11(461A) Certain conditions of public use applicable to specific parks and recreation areas. In addition to the general conditions of public use set forth in this chapter, special conditions shall apply to the specific areas listed as follows:

61.11(1) Hattie Elston Access and Clair Wilson Park, Dickinson County.

a. Parking of vehicles overnight on these areas is prohibited unless the vehicle operator and occupants are actively involved in boating or are fishing as allowed under rule 571—61.14(461A).

b. Overnight camping is prohibited.

61.11(2) Mines of Spain Recreation Area, Dubuque County. All persons shall vacate all portions of the Mines of Spain Recreation Area prior to 10:30 p.m.each day, and no person or persons shall enter into the area until 4 a.m.the following day.

61.11(3) Pleasant Creek Recreation Area, Linn County. Fishing access into and out of the north portion of the area between the east end of the dam to the campground shall be closed from 10:30 p.m.to 4 a.m., except that walk-in overnight fishing will be allowed along the dam. The area known as the dog trial area shall be closed from 10:30 p.m.to 4 a.m., except for those persons participating in a department-authorized field trial. From 10:30 p.m.to 4 a.m., only registered campers are permitted in the campground.

61.11(4) Wapsipinicon State Park, Jones County. The land adjacent to the park on the southeast corner and generally referred to as the "Ohler property" is closed to the public from 10:31 p.m.to 3:59 a.m.

571—61.12(461A) Mines of Spain hunting, trapping and firearms use.

61.12(1) The following described portions of the Mines of Spain Recreation Area are established and will be posted as wildlife refuges:

a. That portion within the city limits of the city of Dubuque located west of U.S. Highway 61 and north of Mar Jo Hills Road.

b. The tract leased by the department from the city of Dubuque upon which the E. B. Lyons Interpretive Center is located.

c. That portion located south of the north line of Section 8, Township 88 North, Range 3 East of the 5th P.M. between the west property boundary and the east line of said Section 8.

d. That portion located north of Catfish Creek, east of the Mines of Spain Road and south of the railroad tracks. This portion contains the Julien Dubuque Monument.

61.12(2) Trapping and archery hunting for all legal species are permitted in compliance with all open-season, license and possession limits on the Mines of Spain Recreation Area except in those areas designated as refuges by subrule 61.12(1).

61.12(3) Firearms use is prohibited in the following described areas:

a. The areas described in subrule 61.12(1).

b. The area north and west of Catfish Creek and west of Granger Creek.

61.12(4) Deer hunting and hunting for all other species are permitted using shotguns only and are permitted only during the regular gun season as established by 571—Chapter 106. Areas not described in subrule 61.10(3) are open for hunting. Hunting shall be in compliance with all other regulations.

61.12(5) Turkey hunting with shotguns is allowed only in compliance with the following regulations:

a. Only during the first shotgun hunting season established in 571—Chapter 98, which is typically four days in mid-April.

b. Only in that area of the Mines of Spain Recreation Area located east of the established roadway and south of the Horseshoe Bluff Quarry.

61.12(6) The use of a handgun or any type of rifle is prohibited on the entire Mines of Spain Recreation Area except as provided in subrule 61.12(4). Target and practice shooting with any type of firearm is prohibited.

61.12(7) All forms of hunting, trapping and firearms use not specifically permitted by rule 571—61.12(461A) are prohibited in the Mines of Spain Recreation Area.

571—61.13(461A) After-hours fishing—exception to closing time. Persons shall be allowed access to the areas designated in rule 571—61.14(461A) between the hours of 10:30 p.m.and 4 a.m.under the following conditions:

1.The person shall be actively engaged in fishing.

2.The person shall behave in a quiet, courteous manner so as not to disturb other users of the park.

3.Access to the fishing site from the parking area shall be by the shortest and most direct trail or access facility.

4.Vehicle parking shall be in the lots designated by signs posted in the area.

5.Activities other than fishing are allowed with permission of the director or an employee designated by the director.

571—61.14(461A) Designated areas for after-hours fishing. These areas are open from 10:30 p.m.to 4 a.m.for fishing only. The areas are described as follows:

61.14(1) Black Hawk Lake, Sac County. The area of the state park between the road and the lake running from the marina at Drillings Point on the northeast end of the lake approximately three-fourths of a mile in a southwesterly direction to a point where the park boundary decreases to include only the roadway.

61.14(2) Clair Wilson Park, Dickinson County. The entire area including the parking lot, shoreline and fishing trestle facility.

61.14(3) Clear Lake State Park, Ritz Unit, Cerro Gordo County. The boat ramp, courtesy dock, fishing dock and parking lots.

61.14(4) Elinor Bedell State Park, Dickinson County. The entire length of the shoreline within state park boundaries.

61.14(5) Elk Rock State Park, Marion County. The Teeter Creek boat ramp area just east of State Highway 14, access to which is the first road to the left after the entrance to the park.

61.14(6) Green Valley State Park, Union County. The shoreline adjacent to Green Valley Road commencing at the intersection of Green Valley Road and 130th Street and continuing south along the shoreline to the parking lot on the east side of the dam, and then west along the dam embankment to the shoreline adjacent to the parking lot on the west side of the spillway.

61.14(7) Hattie Elston Access, Dickinson County. The entire area including the parking lot shoreline and boat ramp facilities.

61.14(8) Honey Creek State Park, Appanoose County. The boat ramp area located north of the park office, access to which is the first road to the left after the entrance to the park.

61.14(9) Geode State Park, Des Moines County portion. The area of the dam embankment that is parallel to County Road J20 and lies between the two parking lots located on each end of the embankment.

61.14(10) Lake Keomah State Park, Mahaska County.

a. The embankment of the dam between the crest of the dam and the lake.

b. The shoreline between the road and the lake from the south boat launch area west and north to the junction with the road leading to the group camp shelter.

61.14(11) Lake Macbride State Park, Johnson County. The shoreline of the south arm of the lake adjacent to the county road commencing at the intersection of Cottage Reserve Road at the north end of the north-south causeway proceeding across the causeway thence southeasterly along a foot trail to the east-west causeway, across the causeway to the parking area on the east end of that causeway.

61.14(12) Lake Manawa State Park, Pottawattamie County. The west shoreline including both sides of the main park road, commencing at the north park entrance and continuing south one and one-half miles to the parking lot immediately north of the picnic area located on the west side of the southwest arm of the lake.

61.14(13) Lower Pine Lake, Hardin County. West shoreline along Hardin County Road S56 from the beach southerly to the boat ramp access.

61.14(14) Mini-Wakan State Park, Dickinson County. The entire area.

61.14(15) North Twin Lake State Park, Calhoun County. The shoreline of the large day-use area containing the swimming beach on the east shore of the lake.

61.14(16) Pikes Point State Park, Dickinson County. The shoreline areas of Pikes Point State Park on the east side of West Okoboji Lake.

61.14(17) Prairie Rose State Park, Shelby County. The west side of the embankment of the causeway across the southeast arm of the lake including the shoreline west of the parking area located off County Road M47 and just north of the entrance leading to the park office.

61.14(18) Rock Creek Lake, Jasper County. Both sides of the County Road F27 causeway across the main north portion of the lake.

61.14(19) Union Grove State Park, Tama County.

a. The dam embankment from the spillway to the west end of the parking lot adjacent to the dam.

b. The area of state park that parallels BB Avenue, from the causeway on the north end of the lake southerly to a point approximately one-tenth of a mile southwest of the boat ramp.

61.14(20) Upper Pine Lake, Hardin County. Southwest shoreline extending from the boat launch ramp to the dam.

61.14(21) Viking Lake State Park, Montgomery County. The embankment of the dam from the parking area located southeast of the dam area northwesterly across the dam structure to its intersection with the natural shoreline of the lake.

571—61.15(461A) Vessels prohibited. Rule 571—61.14(461A) does not permit the use of vessels on the artificial lakes within state parks after the 10:30 p.m.park closing time. All fishing is to be done from the bank or shoreline of the permitted area.

571—61.16(461A,463C) Honey Creek Resort State Park. This chapter shall not apply to Honey Creek Resort State Park. Where permission is required to be obtained from the department, an authorized representative of the department's management company may provide such permission in accordance with policies established by the department.

These rules are intended to implement Iowa Code sections 422.43, 455A.4, 461A.3, 461A.3A, 461A.35, 461A.38, 461A.39, 461A.42, 461A.43, 461A.45 to 461A.51, 461A.57, and 723.4 and chapters 463C and 724.

Natural Resource Commission


This Organization is a part of the Natural Resources Department

Closed For Comments

This notice is now closed for comments. Collection of comments closed on 2/15/2024.

Official Document

  • State parks, recreation areas, and state forest camping, ch 61
  • Published on 1/24/2024
  • 103 Views , 0 Comments
  • Notice of Intended Action

The official published PDF of this document is available from the Iowa General Assembly’s Administrative Rules page.

View Official PDF

View the Iowa Administrative Bulletin for 1/24/2024.

View Bulletin

Keywords

The following keywords and tags were added to this document. You may click a keyword to view related notices.

After-hours fishing—exception to closing time Animal population control hunts Animals Area-specific restrictions on campground use Beach use/swimming Black Hawk Lake, Sac County Bottles Brushy Creek Recreation Area, Webster County Campground fishing Campground reservations Camping fees and registration Camping in state parks and recreation areas Centralized reservation system Chainsaws Clair Wilson Park, Dickinson County Clear Lake State Park, Ritz Unit, Cerro Gordo County Definitions Designated areas for after-hours fishing Elinor Bedell State Park, Dickinson County Elk Rock State Park, Marion County Fees Firearms Fishing off boat docks within state areas Garbage Geode State Park, Des Moines County portion Green Valley State Park, Union County Hattie Elston Access and Clair Wilson Park, Dickinson County Hattie Elston Access, Dickinson County Honey Creek Resort State Park Honey Creek State Park, Appanoose County Lake Keomah State Park, Mahaska County Lake Macbride State Park, Johnson County Lake Manawa State Park, Pottawattamie County Lower Pine Lake, Hardin County Mines of Spain hunting, trapping and firearms use Mines of Spain Recreation Area, Dubuque County Mini-Wakan State Park, Dickinson County Motor vehicle restrictions Noise North Twin Lake State Park, Calhoun County Opening and closing times Organized youth group campsite registration Paintball guns Pikes Point State Park, Dickinson County Pleasant Creek Recreation Area, Linn County Prairie Rose State Park, Shelby County Procedures for camping registration Procedures for rental facility registration Recreation area campgrounds Rental facilities Restrictions on campsite/campground use Restrictions—area and use Rock climbing or rappelling Rock Creek Lake, Jasper County State forest camping areas established and marked State forest camping restrictions—area and use Storage slip assignment Storage slip requirements and conditions Union Grove State Park, Tama County Upper Pine Lake, Hardin County Vessel storage fees Vessels prohibited Viking Lake State Park, Montgomery County Walnut Woods State Park, Polk County Wapsipinicon State Park, Jones County Wet and dry storage for vessels
Click To Comment