Iola Trailhead SignIola is the second-largest community along the Prairie Spirit Trail (population 5704 as of 2010), and is the county seat of Allen County. As such, it has many services, amenities, and points of interest for travelers.

Iola has one official trailhead, at Cofachique Park, near the intersection with State Street (old Highway 169) at Mile Marker 108.6. When the Prairie Spirit Trail first opened in Iola in 2008, Cofachique Park was the “end of the line”, but the city extend the trail another mile-plus, to Riverside Park (mile marker 109.7). Volunteers with Thrive Allen County then created the Southwind Rail Trail heading south from Iola to Humboldt, another 6.5 miles. The Southwind opened in 2013. Riverside Park serves as a second defacto trailhead.

In 2014, Iola added sharrows on some of their streets as an aid in guiding trail users downtown. The sharrows run along Washington Avenue, and connect to the Prairie Spirit Trail at West Street and at Riverside Drive.

In 2015, Iola added the Missouri Pacific Recreational Trail, which follows the old Missouri Pacific Railroad right-of-way east into town. The Mo-Pac Trail connects to the Prairie Spirit Trail at about mile marker 109.

In 2016, Iola added another trail system, the Lehigh Portland Trails, which offer over 10 miles of wide gravel trails and narrower singletrack trails for hiking, biking, and trail running. The Lehigh Portland Trails connect to the Southwind Rail Trail just south of the Elm Creek Trestle Bridge.

 

Directions North and South From Iola

Heading north from Iola, the trail transitions from the city’s paved surface to crushed limestone at the city limit. The ride north features some nice farms on either side of the trail which can be spotted through the trees. Most notable along this stretch is a long bridge over two intersecting roads and a stream. The roads are made to be easily floodable during a heavy rain. Within Iola, the trail is free to use and paved. North of Iola’s city limit, the surface is crushed limestone, and requires a permit.

 

Although the stretch from Iola to Humboldt is part of the same contiguous trail, the name changes from the Prairie Spirit Trail to the Southwind Rail Trail. The Southwind was built by volunteers with Thrive Allen County. The distance between Iola and Bassett is very short, but this segment features the most impressive bridge along the entire corridor, the magnificent Elm Creek Bridge. The Southwind Rail Trail is free to use, requiring no permit. The Lehigh Portland Trails also connect to the Southwind, just south of the Elm Creek Trestle Bridge.

 

Services along the Prairie Spirit Trail in Iola

PhotoService, Address, PhoneServices
Allen County Historical SocietyAllen County Historical Society
20 South Washington Avenue, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-3051
America's Best Value InnAmerica's Best Value Inn
1315 North State Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-5161
Around the Corner Coffee and EateryAround the Corner Coffee and Eatery
110 S Jefferson Ave, Iola, KS 66749
620-228-5779
B & B Country CafeB & B Country Cafe
324 West Garfield Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-8691
Bolling's Meat Market & DeliBolling's Meat Market & Deli
201 South State Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-380-6328
China PalaceChina Palace
110 North State Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-3723
Dairy Queen IolaDairy Queen Iola
323 S State St, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-3691
Dudley’s Done Right BBQDudley’s Done Right BBQ
2402 N State St, Iola, KS 66749
620-380-6580
El Jimador IolaEl Jimador Iola
902 North State Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-7300
General Funston Boyhood HomeGeneral Funston Boyhood Home
14 South Washington, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-3051
Iola RV Park & StorageIola RV Park & Storage
1327 US Highway 54, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-2200
Iola TrailheadIola Trailhead
1310 North State Street, Iola, KS 66749
King's Sandwich ShopKing's Sandwich Shop
321 South State Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-6271
Lehigh Portland TrailsLehigh Portland Trails

Old Jail MuseumOld Jail Museum
203 North Jefferson, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-3051
Renee's BakeryRenee's Bakery
2 North Washington, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-2922
Riverside ParkRiverside Park
600 S State St, Iola, KS 66749
620-365-4930
Rookies Sports Bar & GrillRookies Sports Bar & Grill
105 E Jackson St, Iola, Kansas 66749
620-228-5322
Sam & Louie'sSam & Louie's
2150 N State Street, Iola, KS 66749
620-380-6900

 

Iola Photos

  • Elm Creek Bridge Before Trail
    Elm Creek Bridge Before Trail
  • Elm Creek Bridge Railing Construction
    Elm Creek Bridge Railing Construction
  • End of the Trail 2010
    End of the Trail 2010
  • Pre-Southwind Corridor
    Pre-Southwind Corridor
  • Southwind Rail Trail: Before
    Southwind Rail Trail: Before
  • Touring Cyclists on the Southwind Rail Trail
    Touring Cyclists on the Southwind Rail Trail

 

More Information About Iola