Activities and Amenities
Rathbun Lake is situated in the gently rolling hills of the Chariton River Valley in southeast Iowa. The campground consists of open grassy areas dotted with trees. Shade is limited.
Bald eagles, white-tailed deer, Canada geese, wild turkey, and other wildlife can be found at Rathbun Lake.
The 11,000-acre lake provides a variety of fishing opportunities for any angler. Crappie, channel catfish, walleye, and largemouth bass are most common.
Although power boating is popular, the prevailing winds at Rathbun Lake, also known as Iowa's Ocean, make it one of the best sailing lakes in Iowa.
The park offers 54 family sites with electric hookups, and a group campsite and group day-use area. Amenities include flush and pit toilets, showers, drinking water, a dump station, boat ramp and playground.
The Rathbun Fish Hatchery is located near the main dam, and offers self-guided tours Monday through Friday year-round. Hundreds of thousands of catfish and walleye are produced here each year.
Southern Iowa's only Off Highway Vehicle Park is nearby, on the south bank of the South Fork Chariton River, encompassing nearly 125 acres of an abandoned rock quarry.