Public Lock and Dam Tours

Join a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Park Ranger for a lock and dam tour. Public tours can be scheduled on weekends between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Topics covered during lock and dam tours are river history, lock and dam operation, towboats, barges, cargo, river hazards and much more.

These walking tours will be about an hour long and are dependent on weather conditions. Tour size is limited to 25 people. Lock and dam tours involve walking out onto the lock, therefore proper footwear (enclosed shoes) will be required. Cameras and purses/bags will not be allowed on the tours. Group tours must call ahead. Specific lock sites and requirements are listed below.


Lock & Dam 11 in Dubuque, Iowa. Walking tours of the lock and dam are held Sundays at 2:00 p.m., Memorial Day through Labor Day. Meet at the overlook building. Contact Dubuque ranger station for reservations, (563) 582-0881.

Lock & Dam 13 in Fulton, Illinois. Walking tours are held on Sundays at 1:00 p.m.  from Memorial Day through Labor Day.  Meet at the visitor overlook.  Contact Thomson ranger station for reservations, (815) 259-3628.

Locks & Dam 15 on the Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois. Walking tours are held on Saturdays and Sundays from Memorial Day through Labor Day as staffing allows.  Meet upstairs in the Mississippi River Visitor Center on the west end of Arsenal Island. For security purposes all persons age 16 and over must carry photo ID to enter island. A pass onto the Rock Island Arsenal must be issued by the Visitor Control Center near the Moline security gate. Reservations are required. For information call (309) 794-5338.

Lock & Dam 16 in Illinois City, Illinois. Walking tours are held on Sundays at 2:00 p.m.,  from Memorial Day through Labor Day.  Meet at observation deck. Contact Muscatine ranger station for reservations, (563) 263-7913.