Home » 2003 Cross Country Road Trip

Lake Anita State Park, IA

Thursday, July 10, 2003 - 11:00am by Lolo
630 miles and 11 hours from our last stop - 1 night stay


A long 10-hour day of driving brought us to Lake Anita State Park in southwestern Iowa. It seems like Iowa has become our day-2 state in our transcontinental drives.

The park was quite pretty with many campsites right on the lake. Unfortunately, Lake Anita, like most state parks throughout the country, only allows swimming at a designated beach, which in this case was tauntingly located right across from the campground on the other side of the lake. Not wanting to just settle in for the night without at least some exploration, the kids and I hopped on our bikes and rode the trails around the lake to the beach, which by this time was totally deserted. The kids got quite startled when they saw what appeared to be a baby's hand sticking up from the sand. They ran over and pulled on what turned out to be the plastic hand from a doll. Pretty creepy!

The sun was getting low and we still hadn't eaten dinner yet, so we took a quick dip and rode our bikes back home.


Lake Anita State Park is located in southwest Iowa about 5 miles south of Interstate 80. The park, which contains a beautiful 171-acre artificial lake, is very popular for swimming, fishing and boating.
There is a campground with 144 sites, all within easy access of the lake.

Jim on May 3, 2013

Lake Anita always seems to be our first stop traveling west out of chicago. Sometimes even without knowing it. We'll pull in under the direction of goodalls or google, get to the lake, look at eachother and say "we've been here before"!!

A very nice state park, and a great place to stop for the night.

Really enjoying your blog, just found it. starting on this one cause colorado / utah is what we did last year.
Delicate arch is much easier early in the morning!

Herb on May 3, 2013

Hi Jim,

As you can tell, we like Lake Anita too.. It's a comfortable stop on our way out west.

Glad you are finding something of interest in our website. Your right about Delicate Arch in the morning, but I really like the light in the evening.

Safe travels,


Lake Anita State Park location map

Javascript is required to view this map.