Getting lost, traveling down rustic, curvy, dusty roads while keeping an eye out for wild turkeys and deer makes getting to the Motor Mill in Elkader an authentic Iowa adventure. Entering the landscape, travelers are caught in a time warp throwing them back to the late 1800s. It is time to be still, wander through the buildings and meander along the Turkey River.
Over a 140 years ago, master stone masons built of complex of stone buildings, all which still stand straight and rock strong as they day they placed the last stone. The Motor Mill complex was built to grind corn for farmers and included an Inn for them to stay, a Livery Stable for their horses, a Cooperage to build barrels to ship the corn meal and an Ice House. It is easy to visualize the activities of the mill workers and the farmers from that day, even though it was only in operation for about ten years.
Fast forward to today, the Turkey River Water Trail provides an access point to the Motor Mill and primitive camping. Interpretive signage assists travelers to explore the water trail, learn about cultural history and fish & wildlife along the river. The Turkey River Valley has an abundance of wildlife; Bald Eagles are common and a traveler just might catch a glimpse of a Blue Heron. Seventy four different species of fish have been documented along the Trail.
For more information on the Motor Mill, visit: www.motormill.org
Or for information on the Turkey River Water Trail, visit: www.turkeyriver.org/map.