Charles City Whitewater Park

This whitewater park is located on the Cedar River in the heart of Charles City, Iowa "America's Hometown" as it calls itself. It features 3 distinct drops. Dam Drop or DD is the first in line. This wave feature was designed to be the Midwest's premiere SUP (Stand Up Paddle) surfing wave, but it great for surfing and spinning kayaks. It is located where the old dangerous low-head dam was at, that was removed to create this park. The next feature is Doc's Drop the powerful hole provides excellent playboating, and vertical moves. The final drop is a wave/hole feature called Exit Exam great for beginning and advance kayakers. Each feature is followed by large eddies on both sides for easy reentry and safe exit. It is open year round and is free to use

River/Stream: Cedar River

Location: Charles City, Floyd County
        Latitude: 43.064968
        Longitude: -92.677829
        Click here to view an aerial map of the former beauty dam and the park.

Whitewater park grand opening in June, 2015

Charles City Whitewater website

Kayak Charles City webcam

Charles City Whitewater on American Whitewater

First feature is Dam Drop, also known as Double D

Doc's Drop

Other Iowa whiterwater parks

Built: 1933 for recreation. Whitewater park opened in 2011.

Owner: City of Charles City

Height: formerly 7 ft.

Length: 260 ft.

Comments: Avoid the dangerous 11-foot high Main Street lowhead dam that exists 800 feet upstream from the whitewater park.

Fatalities 1

  • July 10, 1944, Phillip Thomsen, 10-year-old playing with a toy boat fell from a wall into river near the Beauty Dam

View of old beauty dam from river right