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Proud of its Norwegian heritage, Decorah, Iowa, is definitely the place to visit to take in all things Scandinavian. But Decorah is more than justlefseand folk dances. A weekend in the northeastern Iowa community is a walk through nature with eagle viewing as well as hiking trails. And don’t forget about the unique shopping opportunities its main street offers. Oh, and food. The food! Decorah’s culinary scene is worth a trip.

Both of these attractions are visible on the Trout Run Trail:

Decorah Eagles
Each February, an eagle couple lays eggs in the same nest they’ve occupied for more than 10 years. TheDecorah eagles-- Mom, as the female is called, and DM2 (Decorah Male second eagle) -- nurture the eggs until the eaglets hatch in spring. Then, sometime during the summer, the eaglets are ready to leave the roost and venture out on their own. Meanwhile, the parents live in the area year-round. During your visit, you’ll want to take a walk along the paved trail that takes you past the eagles’ nest, which is easily identifiable, partly because of the camera attached to a tree branch. If you’re fortunate to see them close-up, you’ll notice how large each eagle is.

Decorah Fish Hatchery

A short walk from the Decorah eagles, theChuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatcheryoffers you an up-close look at raising trout that will eventually be stocked in Iowa’s rivers, streams, and lakes. You’ll be mesmerized watching fish splash about and leap out of the water as you stroll past more than a dozen pools. Iowa’s Department of Natural Resources releases about 130 million fish around the state annually. The Decorah fish hatchery stocks 15 streams in northeast Iowa. From infancy to adulthood, you can see all sizes of trout. You’ll be tempted to buy some pellets to toss into the water and watch the fish scramble to gobble up the goodies.


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