The Mississippi River Project’s Muscatine Ranger Station has gone to a new way to pay for First-Come First-Serve campsites at the Blanchard Island Recreation Area. This new way is called "Scan & Pay". Blanchard Island’s open fee dates are May 15th through October 15th. Visitors are required to physically arrive at the campground to purchase and claim a site using the QR Code and Recreation.gov mobile APP. (Cash will no longer be accepted for payment. Credit Card Only.)
This "off the beaten" path Class B campground is a fisherman' and hunter's and camper's paradise. The park has a boat ramp, concrete vault toilets, 15 campsites-each with a picnic table and fire ring, as well as a beautiful and quiet view of Blanchard Chute on the Mississippi River.
There are a number of water hydrants throughout the park that provide potable water. A dump station is also available for camper's use.
Attention Campers! Beginning 2024, the Mississippi River Project's new Check-out time will be 12 pm. The new Check-in time will be 2 pm.
The Mississippi River Project’s Muscatine Ranger Station has gone to a new way to pay for First-Come First-Serve campsites at the Blanchard Island Recreation Area. Blanchard Island’s open fee dates are May 15th through October 15th.
First, you’ll want to download the Recreation.gov mobile APP to your phone prior to coming to the park, then create an account if you don’t already have one, because some remote areas have limited or no cellular service.
Second, all campsites are on a First-Come First-Serve basis. Visitors are required to physically arrive at the campground to purchase and claim a site. (Cash will no longer be accepted for payment. Credit Card Only.)
Third, all payments will be completed by the customer using their smartphone (Android and IOS) by scanning a QR Code using the Recreation.gov mobile APP.
Note: You cannot use Recreation.gov the website, to secure your site; you must use the Recreation.gov mobile APP and be at the campground. The Recreation.gov website, however; will have an information page for Blanchard Island now, so you can learn more about “Scan and Pay” here.
All dogs must be on a 6 foot leash and not allowed to roam freely for the safety of other campers and the pet.
Quiet hours are from 10 pm to 7 am. Generators are not allowed during this time.
A maximum of 6 campers are allowed per site as well as 2 vehicles.
Practice Leave No Trace Principles
Blanchard Island Recreation Area is a great place to view wildlife due to it's serene backcountry feel. It sits along the backwaters of the Mississippi River. You'll have to travel about 2 miles on a gravel road to get here, but it's well worth it. You'll want to bring the bug spray though to be safe!
Fisherman have good luck fishing for catfish from Blanchard Island. If you have a boat, you can launch it from here and find the best catfish holes. In the Fall, hunters enjoy camping and hunting deer from here, as well as the Island; if they bring their boat.
Others just enjoy the serenity of the park and the natural views of the river and bottom lands. Wildife viewing is a popular activity here. Bald Eagles, ducks, Pileated Woodpeckers, deer, and the occasional muskrat or otter may be seen.
As in the past, no refunds will be given if you must leave the campground early.
34000 176th Ave. W. New Boston IL 61272
1315 River's Edge Drive Muscatine IA 52761
For campground inquiries, please call: 563-263-7913
To get to Blanchard Island Recreation Area you will need to drive on approximately 2.5 miles of gravel road. The address is 34000 176th Ave. W., New Boston, IL 61272.
From Muscatine, IA, you will need to cross the Muscatine Bridge into IL. You'll drive about 2 miles on Hwy. 92, then turn right onto 322nd St. W for about 4.5 miles. Then you'll turn right onto 176th St. W, which is a gravel road. Follow this gravel road all the way to the levee for about 2.5 miles, then go up and over the levee to enter the park.