While winter weather arrived to western Iowa weeks ago, the first day of winter is officially here. In the Northern Hemisphere, December 21 is marked by the winter solstice, when the Earth is at its maximum tilt away from the sun resulting in the least amount of sunlight during the year. While the days get longer from now until the summer solstice, temperatures will remain cold (and colder!) until spring thaws the frozen soil, ponds, and creeks of western Iowa. For those that relish the winter wonderland of western Iowa, the next few months are a delight. If you shudder at the thought of Old Man Winter, however, get cozy with a cup of cocoa and give winter a chance as there are plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy the snowy season along western Iowa’s three scenic byways.
Mount Crescent Ski Area
Perhaps the epicenter of winter outdoor recreation on the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway, the Mount Crescent Ski Area is ready for a historic season. Pottawattamie County Conservation recently acquired the property as part of its plan to create one of the largest nature areas in the state. The 2022-23 winter season marks 61 years since Mount Crescent first opened and new snowmaking machines guarantee a 100% chance of snow from December through March. Pottawattamie County has committed to increasing snow-making and grooming frequency throughout the season as well as reducing wait times to improve the customer experience.
Opening day for the 2022-23 season is December 21st. With the exception of Christmas Day, Mount Crescent will be open every day over the holidays beginning on December 21st from 10am until 5pm (9am to 3pm on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve). After the new year, the ski area will be open for night skiing on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4pm to 9pm, in addition to extended hours on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays (check the winter hours calendar).
Season passes are available for purchase on Mount Crescent’s website; Pottawattamie County residents receive a 25% discount on season passes and lift tickets. You can also pre-purchase single-day lift tickets, equipment rentals, ski and snowboard lessons, and reserve sledding passes (zibob sledding every other Saturday from 6pm - 9pm beginning in January) on the website.
Hitchcock Nature Center
Pottawattamie County Conservation has long-term plans to connect Mount Crescent Ski Area with Hitchcock Nature Center, where more winter activities await visitors. Hiking is popular at Hitchcock, and the ten-mile trail system creates a variety of options for hikers to explore the rugged terrain of the Loess Hills in winter. There are several guided hikes scheduled throughout winter at Hitchcock Nature Center. Naturalist Dustin Clayton will lead the annual Winter Solstice Night Hike on December 21st at 6:30pm. The hike is free with valid park entry or membership. Another hike on New Year’s Eve, starting at 6pm, offers the chance to ring in 2023 by viewing Omaha’s fireworks display far away from the crowds. Check Hitchcock’s calendar for more winter hikes.
Hiking isn’t the only activity on the trails at Hitchcock. The rugged topography and steep ridges make the park a sledding paradise. One of the trails in particular, The Chute, is notoriously steep but perfect for sledding in winter. All sledding at Hitchcock is at your own risk, so bring your own sled and please be mindful of other people on the trails.
While you must bring your own sled to Hitchcock, snowshoes are available for guest rental at the park’s Loess Hills Lodge. There must be at least four to six inches of snow on the ground to rent snowshoes. If you are new to snowshoeing, the environmental education team at Hitchcock has planned four “pop-up” classes in January and February to teach you the basics of snowshoeing. The classes are weather-dependent, so check the park’s calendar and social media for confirmation of dates.
Cone Park Sioux City
One hour north of Hitchcock Nature Center on the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway, Cone Park is the place for winter fun in Sioux City. The centerpiece of the park is the 83-foot tall tubing hill with a 700-foot run. There is also an ice skating rink, outdoor fire pit, and lodge to warm up with a hot drink before heading back up the carpet lift to the top of the hill for more tubing fun. Tubes are provided by Cone Park (outside tubes are not allowed) and ice skates are available to rent if you don’t have your own pair. Tubing sessions of three hours cost $10 and can be reserved, as some sessions do occasionally sell out. For a complete list of operating dates, hours, and rates, check out Cone Park’s website and Facebook page.
Start 2023 off on the right foot by joining one of several First Day Hikes in western Iowa. First Day Hikes are part of a nationwide initiative led by state parks around the United States to encourage people to get outdoors. There are several official First Day Hikes scheduled on or near western Iowa’s scenic byways.
Friends Of The Loess Hills State Forest And Preparation Canyon State Park, Iowa DNR, and Golden Hills RC&D are partnering to host a First Day 5K Hike at the Pisgah Unit of the Loess Hills State Forest. The hike begins at 1pm on January 1, 2023, and will conclude with snacks and drinks at the Brent Olson Memorial Visitor Center (206 Polk Street in Pisgah). To participate in the hike, meet at 2047 145th Street south of Pisgah and park along the road.
The First Day Hike at Waubonsie State Park begins at 1pm at the Wa-Shawtee Lodge (2585 Waubonsie Park Rd, Hamburg IA 51640). The 2-mile hike will begin at Wa-Shawtee Lodge and wind off-trail through the woods of Waubonsie State Park and the Militia Hollow Wildlife Management Area. The Friends of Waubonsie will be supplying food and beverages before and after the hike.
At the northern end of the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway, Stone State Park in Sioux City will be hosting a First Day Hike at 10am on January 1st. Meet at the parking lot across from the park office (5001 Talbot Rd, Sioux City IA 51103) to join park staff for a short 45-minute moderate hike through the woods. Dress for weather and contact the park office (712-255-4698; Stone@dnr.iowa.gov) with any questions.
Two state parks along the Western Skies Scenic Byway will also be hosting First Day Hikes. Prairie Rose State Park near Harlan will hike around the east side of the lake, taking hikers through wooded areas, prairie, and across the hidden bridge. Meet at 4pm at the park office (680 Road M47, Harlan IA 51537). Springbrook State Park, near Guthrie Center, will hike to the highest point in the park, stopping at geologically and historically significant sites along the way and looking for signs of wildlife activity. Hot chocolate will be provided after the hike. The hike begins at 1pm and meets at the park house/office (2437 160th Rd, Guthrie Center IA 50115).
Continue hiking throughout winter in western Iowa by using the Loess Hills hiking guide developed by Golden Hills RC&D. Hiking in cold weather can be fun as long as you dress and pack accordingly. Dress in layers so that you can peel off a layer if you get overheated, then put it back on if you get chilled. Your base layer should be a wicking material to keep sweat off of your skin, while the second layer should be insulating to retain heat. The outer layer should protect you from wind and precipitation. Don’t forget to wear a hat to keep your head warm. Winter is also hunting season, so wear at least one item of clothing that is blaze orange (don’t forget blaze orange for your dog!).
Locals know their area best and each community has its own popular sledding hill. The steep ridges of the Loess Hills and the rolling swells on the Western Skies Scenic Byway and Glacial Trail Scenic Byway make for great sledding. Some great spots for sledding include, but are not limited to, Vincent Bluff State Preserve in Council Bluffs and Sertoma Park and Grandview Park, both in Sioux City, as well as the aforementioned The Chute at Hitchcock Nature Center in Honey Creek.
Many of the hiking trails in western Iowa can also be used by cross-country skiers in winter. While most, if not all, of the trails are not groomed for cross-country skiing in the winter, the intrepid explorer can still strap on their ski boots and cut a path through the powder after a fresh snow. The Wabash Trace Nature Trail is an excellent option for cross-country skiing, as the level grade and trailhead accessibility make it easy to get out and explore the trail during the winter.
Bird watching might not come to mind as a winter activity, but in fact it is a wonderful winter activity for several reasons. Around 20% of Iowa birds overwinter in the state, so while there aren’t as many birds to watch during other seasons, winter does provide plenty of bird watching opportunities. One of the main reasons bird watching is great in winter is the lack of foliage makes it easier to spot birds in trees and shrubs. Additionally, many birds change their feathers in winter, so you can test your bird identification skills. Northern cardinals, blue jays, juncos, northern flickers, woodpeckers, owls, hawks, and eagles are just some of the common birds that overwinter in Iowa.
Western Skies Scenic Byway connects some of the best birding areas in Iowa and has many places to see birds. Check out our Western Skies Birding Trail page with information about birding the Western Skies Scenic Byway. There are two Bird Conservation Areas on the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway: Loess Hills Bird Conservation Area in Harrison and Monona counties, and Broken Kettle Bird Grasslands in Plymouth County.
A great way to join a bird watching group is to participate in a Christmas Bird Count. The Audubon Christmas Bird count is the nation's longest-running community science bird project. It is a census performed annually by volunteers between December 14th and January 5th. Each count is performed in a 15-mile “count circle” by at least ten volunteers that break into small groups and follow assigned routes, while some watch bird feeders. The National Audubon Society administers the counts and uses the population data to inform their conservation programs. To learn more about the Audubon Christmas Bird Count, check out the Christmas Bird Count Compiler Resources, where you can search for a Christmas Bird Count in your area via this map.
The nearest Christmas Bird Counts to western Iowa’s scenic byways will be held in Cass County and Ida County, respectively. The Cass County Christmas Bird Count is scheduled for December 28 from 8am to 4:30pm at Cold Spring State Park near Lewis (south of Atlantic). Contact Cass County Conservation for more information.
The Loess Hills Audubon Society will host a Christmas Bird Count on December 31 at Moorhead Park in Ida Grove. The count begins at 8am and will conclude at 3:30pm. Chili will be provided for lunch, while pie and ice cream will be available after the count has concluded. For more information, contact Don Poggensee (712-369-3454; firstname.lastname@example.org). Ida Grove is a half-hour drive east of the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway and one hour south of Glacial Trail Scenic Byway.
The Western Skies Scenic Byway, dedicated in 1998, is among the first state-designated scenic byways in Iowa. Western Skies offers travelers several easy opportunities to venture off the beaten path. The Byway is 142 miles long, traveling through Harrison, Shelby, Audubon and Guthrie Counties, including 14 rural towns. It is easily accessible to travelers from both Interstates 80 and 29.
The byway allows visitors to explore and take in a scenic journey along Iowa’s landscapes of rolling hills, working farmsteads, and tranquil small town life. Below are several unique places to stay for visitors exploring Western Skies.
Willow Lake Recreation Area cabins, Woodbine (Harrison County)
The Willow Lake Recreation Area near Woodbine has 6 beautiful rental cabins that sleep from 4-14 people. The cabins get fully booked on summer weekends, so move fast to reserve a cabin or visit during the week or shoulder season. A new nature center is under construction at Willow Lake, which is a popular fishing spot that also has more than six miles of hiking trails. Plan your visit to coincide with Woodbine’s Applefest on the last Saturday in September.
Mitzi's Place, Woodbine (Harrison County)
If the cabins at Willow Lake Recreation Area are booked, or if you simply want to experience the simple life in small-town western Iowa, book a stay at Mitzi’s Place. Just steps from downtown Woodbine, this cottage has been impeccably renovated while keeping its Victorian charm. The rocking chairs on the beautiful front porch are excellent choices to spend a summer or fall evening. Check the Airbnb listing for more information and availability.
Seeley Creek Cabin Getaway and Hunting Lodge, Guthrie Center (Guthrie County)
Nestled on 40 acres complete with a fully stocked fishing pond and walking trail, the Seeley Creek Cabin Getaway is perfect for a romantic weekend or a hunting trip with family and friends. Located just south of the Western Skies Scenic Byway, the cabin is near Seely Creek Timber and Sutcliff Woodland. Visit in fall and pick your own apples from the surrounding woods or enjoy a cozy weekend next to the fireplace with a good book while snow falls outside. Check Navey’s listing on Airbnb for more information and availability.
Schafer Century Barn, Adair (Guthrie County)
The Schafer Century Barn is an immaculately restored 1915 barn located on a seventh-generation family farm. Guests can rent the barn when it is not being used as a wedding venue. Its location is less than ten minutes from Highway 44, making it a perfect base to explore the Western Skies Scenic Byway as well as the White Pole Road Scenic Byway.
Hackberry Bend Primitive Woodland Tent Site, Stuart (Guthrie County)
Hang hammocks around the fire pit at Hackberry Bend, a private camping site just minutes from Interstate 80. You won’t have to hike your supplies in to this primitive woodland campsite, as parking is only fifty feet away from the leveled mulch tent pad. The tent pad can fit a four-person tent, while the surrounding trees can accommodate three to four hammocks. Pets are welcome (on leash)! Check the Airbnb listing for available dates.
The Rookery Cottage, Coon Rapids (Carroll County)
Like nearby Whiterock Conservancy, the Rookery Cottage is within a short drive of the Western Skies Scenic Byway. The rustic cottage hosts up the six guests. The proximity to the byway, Whiterock Conservancy, and the Middle Raccoon River Valley provides visitors with plenty of outdoor recreation opportunities. Check the Airbnb listing for more information, photos, and availability.
Taylor Hill Lodge, Audubon (Audubon County)
Taylor Hill Lodge welcomes guests to stay in an English barn built in the 1890s by Grandpa Taylor. Six guest rooms are available in the rolling hills just three miles north of Audubon. The lodge has been transformed into a modern bed and breakfast while maintaining the barn’s Midwestern charm. Local artist Clint Hansen designed the stained-glass windows. The lodge is ideally located for travelers from Omaha or Des Moines, as it sits halfway between the two cities. Check the website for more information and reservations.
Garst Historic Farmhouse and other properties, Coon Rapids (Carroll County)
Whiterock Conservancy is not on the Western Skies Scenic Byway, however, the short fifteen-minute drive makes it an ideal place to stay while you explore the byway’s attractions and communities. There are several places to stay at Whiterock, including the Garst Farmhouse, which hosted Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev in 1959. Other options include a log cabin and several quaint cottages and farmhouses. Check the website for more information.
Rock N Ranch Events & Campground, Menlo (Guthrie County)
Travelers need to follow five miles of gravel roads to reach Rock N Ranch, a rustic ranch just south of Beaver Creek. The ranch is a retirement dream and has grown from a few tent sites to include cabins ranging from a barebones cabin for hunters to heated and air conditioned cabins. Choose from four cabins and several tent sites that are available on the Hipcamp listing.
Firefly Creek Ranch, Guthrie Center (Guthrie County)
A former county health facility, this property sat vacant until the current owners came up with a plan to turn it into a non-profit art, community, and retreat center. There are only dispersed RV and tent sites available at Firefly Creek Ranch, but pitching your tent on a farm is a unique experience. Farm animals and friendly folks will make your stay at Firefly Creek Ranch warm and welcoming. Check the listing on Hipcamp for more information.
Dog Creek Park grain bins, Sutherland (O’Brien County)
There are two grain bins at Dog Creek Park, aptly named Beans and Corn, where up to twelve guests can enjoy the park located directly on the Glacial Trail Scenic Byway. The grain bins are available to rent, with a two-night minimum, from May through December. Each grain bin has a spiral staircase that gives access to the deck on the second floor, offering breathtaking views of the lake and Little Sioux River Valley.
Uncle Tom's Cabin at River Road Conservation Area, Cherokee (Cherokee County)
Although not on the Glacial Trail Scenic Byway, this cabin south of Cherokee is a short drive away. The cabin is named after Tom Nelson, whose wife donated the cabin surrounding acreage to Cherokee County after he passed away, creating River Road Conservation Area. Hiking and cross-country skiing trails, fishing ponds, river access, and hunting make Uncle Tom’s Cabin a perfect getaway during any time of year—it’s also pet-friendly! Contact Cherokee County Conservation and the cabin’s website for information and reservations.
Winery Loft at Inspiration Vines & Wines, Linn Grove (Buena Vista County)
InnSpiration Vines & Wines started as a bed and breakfast in 2005 and expanded into a winery in 2011. The Winery Loft hosts up to four guests in the second-floor space above the wine tasting room. Floor-to-ceiling windows look out on splendid views of the pond and timber. Hiking trails connect to several vineyards in the area and the nearby Little Sioux River offers more outdoor recreation opportunities. Enjoy the fire pit and patio as you sample InnSpiration wines.
Generations Bed & Breakfast, Sutherland (O’Brien County)
Just minutes from Glacial Trail Scenic Byway, Generations Bed & Breakfast offers a slice of life in rural western Iowa. This cozy cottage has multiple bedrooms to choose and large deck to enjoy those famous Iowa sunsets. Make sure you check out Bogenrief Studios during your stay in Sutherland.
The Morning Glory B&B, Cherokee (Cherokee County)
Cherokee is the largest town near the Glacial Trail Scenic Byway and there are several lodging options in town. The Morning Glory B&B is a beautifully restored Victorian mansion near Main Street. After a busy day exploring Glacial Trail, relax in a rocking chair on the spacious front porch. Check the Airbnb listing for more picture and availability.
Library Loft Apartment - Left Wing & Right Wing, Cherokee (Cherokee County)
What would bookstore owners call the apartment above their shop? The Library Loft, of course! Stay in one (or both) of the wings, each beautifully renovated and designed. High ceilings, large windows, and original hardwood give the lofts plenty of character. After driving the Byway all day, the ability to walk to shops and restaurants will be much appreciated. Check the hosts’ Airbnb profile for more information on each loft.
Lovely Loft in Cherokee on Historic Main Street, Cherokee (Cherokee County)
Another loft on Main Street in Cherokee, this one just as lovely as the previous. If you need more space, the host has another Airbnb listing that can accommodate six guests. Check their profile for more information.
Buffalo Ridge Barn, Cherokee (Cherokee County)
Another option in Cherokee is the Buffalo Ridge Barn, located on the north edge of town. A former horse barn, it has been converted into a lovely guest house that is available to rent on Airbnb. Games, puzzles, and a small library make this an ideal option for families or groups that are exploring Glacial Trail together. Dude and Lori Ganger, the owners, have decorated the barn with horse memorabilia and antiques as a reminder of days gone by. Check their listing for availability.
If we've missed a unique lodging option on Western Skies Scenic Byway or Glacial Trail Scenic Byway that should be added to this list, please contact Seth Brooks at email@example.com.
Named after one of the most unique landforms in North America, the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway spans 220 miles of paved roads with an additional 185 miles of optional excursion loops. With so much ground to cover, travelers will need places to stay in order to fully appreciate the natural and cultural heritage the Byway offers. There are numerous lodging options along the Byway; below are some of the most unique places to stay to make your trip on the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway an unforgettable experience. Start planning a trip for next year or escape cabin fever with a winter weekend getaway!
Five Ridge Prairie Camping Cabin, Westfield (Plymouth County)
Perched atop a ridge overlooking the Missouri River Valley, the camping cabin at Five Ridge Prairie State Preserve is available year-round, weather permitting. The one-room cabin sleeps four and can only be reached on foot, requiring guests to hike in with their supplies, including water. The cabin has a primitive bathroom, propane heat, and a solar power system for indoor lighting. Enjoy the cozy cabin in winter, come in early spring for blooming pasque flowers, or visit in fall as the prairie grasses turn rusty red. The sweeping views and solitude are worth the strenuous hike up the ridge. For more information or to make a reservation, visit the Five Ridge Prairie website or call Plymouth County Conservation at (712) 947-4270.
Chocolate Mansion and Linda Sue Manor, Sioux City (Woodbury County)
Two neighboring boutique hotels, Chocolate Mansion and Linda Sue Manor, offer travelers on the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway the opportunity to spend the night in beautiful Victorian-style mansions in the heart of Sioux City. Both are filled with antiques and furniture honoring their history. Sit on the porch on a balmy summer evening, stroll the garden, and take a walk in the historic neighborhood. For more information, refer to each hotel's website.
RT Reese Homestead Cabin, Turin (Monona County)
In order to ensure the land would be properly cared for and available to the public, the Reese family donated part of their homestead to Monona County. Guests of up to eight can stay at the ADA-accessible cabin on the homestead, which features restored prairie and wetlands and is surrounded by 713 acres of public land owned by Monona County Conservation and the Iowa DNR. Contact Monona County Conservation at (712) 433-2400 for more information or to reserve the cabin.
LoHi Bells: Loess Hills Basecamp Tent and Scout’s Point, Onawa (Monona County)
Airbnb hosts Kelly and Doug have set up two double-walled canvas tents on their property east of Onawa. Their property borders the Turin Wildlife Management Area, giving guests access to over 1,000 acres of wilderness to explore. The tents are not available during the winter; instead, book a stay during warmer months to hike the surrounding hills during the day, then gaze at the starry night sky after sitting around a toasty campfire. Check their Airbnb listings for more information and pictures.
Jordan Creek Aronia Berry Farm and Jordan Creek Farms, Soldier (Monona County)
Two Airbnb listings near Soldier, just ten minutes from the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway, offer visitors the chance to unplug and unwind along Jordan Creek. Both properties are on the family farm of Terry and Shirley Weldon. Their daughters Vicki, Cyndy, and Patti have all been involved in building houses on the property, two of which are open to guests. The artwork of their late son Jeffrey adorns the properties. Vicki has opened her house to guests, where she has grown Aronia berries for five years. Vicki’s house is typically booked, and if that is the case, Patti welcomes visitors to stay at another house on the farm. Both listings have earned glowing reviews from previous guests. There is no WiFi or TV, but the surrounding countryside and pristine night sky offer plenty of entertainment.
Loess Hills Hideaway Cabins & Campground, Moorhead (Monona County)
Nestled in the woods surrounding Savery Pond, the Loess Hills Hideaway Cabins & Campground offer an ideal escape to explore the nearby units of the Loess Hills State Forest as well as Preparation Canyon State Park. Seven cabins, which sleep between four and seven guests, and six RV/tent sites are available year-round for individuals, couples, hunting groups, retreats, reunions, and families (including your house-trained dogs!). WiFi is not available, so if you are looking to disconnect, this beautiful and quiet slice of western Iowa is the perfect destination. For more information, check the Loess Hills Hideaway website or call (402) 660-3267.
Grain Bin Getaway, Missouri Valley (Harrison County)
Grain bins are not an uncommon sight on the Loess Hill National Scenic Byway, but have you ever considered staying in one? Architect Brent Nie and his wife Christy have repurposed an existing grain bin into a unique getaway. The property sits at the foot of the Loess Hills with the broad floodplain of the Missouri river to the west. Sunsets are spectacular and the hosts recommend hiking up the ridge behind the bins for breath taking views. Google “Grain Bin Getaway Missouri Valley Iowa” or check their Airbnb listing for more information and photos.
Cheese Cave Apartment, Honey Creek (Pottawattamie County)
Cows aren’t the only ungulates that graze the Loess Hills, as you will learn first-hand after a stay at this Airbnb listing. Janna has converted part of this working farm into a “cheese cave” apartment to allow guests a pastoral experience less than a half hour from the Omaha/Council Bluffs metropolitan area. Help milk the sheep in the morning (depending on the season), hike the nearby trails in the afternoon, then enjoy a relaxing evening with a bottle of wine and fresh cheese. Contact Janna through her Airbnb listing for more information.
The Arrowhead Lodge, Council Bluffs (Pottawattamie County)
The "quirky and clean" Arrowhead Lodge offers guests a unique resting stop as they explore the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway. The lodge is located in a suburban neighborhood on the outskirts of Council Bluffs, but you'd never notice it with the forested surroundings and the two goats that call the backyard home. Dogs are welcome but need approval and an additional fee. Check the Hipcamp listing for availability.
Art Church, Malvern (Mills County)
Your dreams will be divine during a stay at the Art Church, a former place of worship turned into an art studio by a native artist. Zach Jones purchased the desanctified church in 2012 and turned the space into his working art studio. The former downstairs studio is now available on Airbnb, which has garnered rapturous reviews. Guests are welcome to visit the current studio on the main floor, where Zach has painted a mural on the former church’s ceiling. Check out Zach’s other listings on Airbnb in Malvern, including Studio 414 and Art House, which is scheduled to open in 2023.
Malvern Depot, Malvern (Mills County)
Whether you are driving the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway or riding the Wabash Trace Nature Trail, make a stop in Malvern to stay at this former railroad depot. The bunkhouse can host up to five people in the charming and vibrant town of Malvern. The depot’s location right on the trail is perfect for bike enthusiasts or travelers looking for small-town Iowa hospitality. Check the Depot's Airbnb listing for availability.
Former Sugar Clay Winery, Thurman (Fremont County)
The devastating floods of 2019 affected many communities and businesses along the Missouri River Valley. Due to decreased traffic as a result of closed interstate exits, the owners of Sugar Clay Winery unfortunately decided to shutter their business. The former winery and vineyard, however, is open to guests as an Airbnb property. The modern cabin has a spacious deck and wooden walkway underneath the forest canopy, making it the perfect secluded sanctuary as you explore the southwestern section of the Loess Hills National Scenic Byway. Check the Airbnb listing for availability.
Horse Creek Adventures, Sidney (Fremont County)
Disconnect for a weekend, or longer, at Horse Creek Adventures near Sidney. The 170-acre ranch offers RV sites and off-the-grid cabins; you can also pitch a tent anywhere on the ranch, "by the pond, on top of the hill, or in a valley." Check the ranch's listing on Hipcamp. If you want to bring your dogs, make sure you inquire first with Horse Creek Adventures to get the okay.
If we've missed a unique lodging option on the Loess Hills Scenic Byway that should be added to this list, please contact Seth Brooks at firstname.lastname@example.org.