Activities

Biking Trails

Mountain bicyclists can use the trails on Grandad's Farm and adjoining RiverRidge Farm or easily access Story County Greenbelt mountain-bike trails immediately south of Grandad's Farm. Central Iowa has approximately 70 miles of off road bike trails. Road bicyclists will find Central Iowa home to approximately 20 bike trails with maintained surfaces. Most trails are located within a 50 mile radius of Loya's B&B, including the 91 mile, 10 trail central Iowa loop.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.inhf.org/iowatrails/
www.inhf.org/trails/central-iowa-trail-network

Amenities:
• Bike trails, five miles on-site
• Public off-road bike trails, county trails within a mile
• Public surfaced bike trails, many within a 50 mile radius
• Central Iowa loop trail within a half hour's drive
• Whiterock Conservancy off-road trails, 1.5 hours, 82 miles

Bird and Wildlife Watching

Wildlife enthusiasts start their observations from the rooms, patios and decks of the B&B. Bird feeding stations, gardens, and water features attract a continuous supply of wildlife. Trails on Grandad's Farm and adjoining RiverRidge Farm provide birders and wildlife lovers an opportunity to observe a variety of wildlife and habitats while hiking the farms' trails. Trails consist of prairie, wetland, and woodland habitats and include a monitored bluebird trail. Birdwatchers also have access to McFarland Park and the Story County Greenbelt trails. Central Iowa is home to the Makoke Trail consisting of 22 bird watching areas, many within a few miles of the B&B.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.iowabirds.org
http://www.iowadnr.gov/Things-to-Do/Watchable-Wildlife
www.audubon.org/big-bluestem-audubon-society

Amenities:
• Four bird feeding areas
• Gardens attracting pollinators
• Water features
• Fifty house bluebird trail
• Skunk River riverine system
• Prairie and prairie pothole habitats
• Upland and floodplain woodlands
• Whiterock Conservancy birding areas, 1.5 hours, 82 miles
• Twenty two birding sites on the Makoke Trail

Canoe and Kayaking

Local paddlers know the beauty of the upper Skunk River. Enjoy the hard work of the Skunk River Navy to clean up the river and improve its beauty. The Department of Landscape Architecture at Iowa State University headed up a group of individuals, organizations and private landowners along the river to have the Upper Skunk designated a state water trail. The Upper Skunk River Canoe Trail offers eight access points between Story City and south Ames, two of them easily accessed from Grandad's Farm: one a mile north and one a mile south of the farm. Rent canoes/kayaks in Ames at www.jaxmercantile.com/Rentals or bring your own.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
http://www.iowadnr.gov/Things-to-Do/Canoeing-Kayaking
iowawatertrails.org/watertrails

Amenities:
• Anderson canoe access #239 one mile north of the B&B on 150th Street
• Soper's Mill canoe access #235 one mile south of the B&B on 170th Street
• Peterson Pits canoe access #234 two miles south of the B&B on 180th Street
• Shuttle assistance if you only have one vehicle

Cross-country Skiing

Enjoy winter? The trails on Grandad's Farm and adjoining RiverRidge Farm provide immediate cross-country skiing opportunities for skiers and winter enthusiast. Looking for more of a challenge? The Story County Greenbelt trails are within easy access from Loya's B&B and offer more rigorous terrain. During the winter the Upper Skunk River Canoe Trail offers an excellent cross-country skiing opportunity.

Activities free to registered guests.

Bring your own or rent skies at:
www.jaxmercantile.com/Rentals
www.skunkrivercycles.com

Amenities:
• Five miles of on-site trails
• Skunk River skiing when frozen adds to trail length

Hiking Trails

Walk! Whether it is a short stroll around the gardens at the B&B or a more invigorating longer hike to explore a variety of habitat, Loya's B&B can offer the experience. The B&B has several shorter trails that explore the gardens, prairie and woodlands high above the river. These trails extend out to trails around the farm buildings and fields at Grandad's Farm and onto adjoining RiverRidge Farm with approximately 5 miles of private trails. Several public hiking areas and trails are within a few miles of the B&B. The Story County Greenbelt trails are within easy access from Loya's B&B and within hiking distance.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.storycounty.com

Amenities:
• Five miles of on-site trails

Horseback Riding

The trails on Grandad's Farm and adjoining RiverRidge Farm are available for horseback riders. The farms' trails are a short distance from one of Story County's equestrian trails and within easy access from Loya's B&B. Guests are welcome to bring their horses with them with the option of renting a stall in the horse barn, paddock space or housing horses in the owners' trailers.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.storycountyiowa.gov/Facilities
www.mycountyparks.com
www.iowadnr.gov/Things-to-Do/Equestrian

Amenities:
• Five miles of on-site trails

Snowshoeing

Grandad's Farm and RiverRidge Farm are also excellent areas to put your snowshoes to work. The terrain on the farms ranges from flat to fairly steep hills. Snowshoeing is an excellent way to see wildlife during snowy winters when deep snow makes hiking trails more difficult. Snowshoeing the Story County Greenbelt trails and McFarland Park extends the areas available to snowshoers. All are easily accessed from Loya's B&B and the farms.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.storycounty.com

Bring your own or rent snowshoes at:
www.jaxmercantile.com/Rentals

Amenities:
• Five miles of on-site trails
• Skunk River snowshoeing when frozen adds to trail length

Sky Watching

Night skies can be spectacular and beautiful, even in the dead of winter. Loya's B&B, Grandad's Farm and RiverRidge Farm have only the minimal light needed for guests' security. This leaves much of the property free of artificial light, making it a great place to observe the stars at night. Night skies, however, are not the only times to watch the sky here. The vast expanses of prairies and pasture provide ample areas for observing not only big fair weather clouds but also ominous storm clouds and marvelous sunsets. Birders will enjoy looking for owls at night and observing large flocks of migrating waterfowl by day. The open prairies provide excellent habitat for migrating raptors.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.storycounty.com
www.amesastronomers.org

Amenities:
• Minimal light pollution
• Excellent views of the night sky from patios, decks and rooms
• Excellent areas to photograph sunrises, sunsets and night skies

Tubing

Not a paddler? Find some inner tubes and life jackets and bring them along. The Upper Skunk River Canoe Trail has long been a favorite tubing river for the residents of RiverRidge and Grandad's Farm. The trail offers eight access points between Story City and south Ames and two of them are easily accessed from Grandad's Farm: #239, Anderson Access, a mile north and #235, Soper's Mill, a mile south of the farm.

Activities free to registered guests.

Amenities:
• Shuttle assistance if you only have one vehicle

Running Trails

Runners aren't excluded from enjoying a running experience at the B&B. An easy run goes through the woodland high above and along the river, eventually opening up to a trail bordering the prairies. These trails join other trails on Grandad's Farm and adjoining RiverRidge Farm with approximately 5 miles of private trails through a variety of grasslands, wetlands and woodlands. Story County Greenbelt trails are also within easy access from Loya's B&B, providing a wide variety difficulty and terrain.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.storycounty.com

Amenities:
• Five miles of on-site trails
• Variety of terrains
• Access to public river valley trails
• Quiet county roads

Wildflower Hiking

Woodland flowers abound at the B&B and both farms in the spring. The prairies on both Grandad's Farm and RiverRidge Farm boast a variety of prairie forbs during the summer and fall. Grandad's Farm and adjoining RiverRidge Farm have approximately 5 miles of private trails for viewing flowers. Story County Greenbelt trails are within easy access from Loya's B&B. These trails eventually lead to the north side of Story County's McFarland Park and easy access to Peterson Pits Park area. These trails are also within 2 miles of Doolittle Prairie, a state prairie preserve managed by Story County Conservation, all available for seeing wildflowers.

Activities free to registered guests.

For more information go to:
www.storycounty.com

Amenities:
• Five miles of on-site trails provide a variety wildflowers
• Prairie wildflowers, especially summer and fall
• Woodland wildflowers, especially spring
• Wetland wildflowers, especially spring and summer