Goat Island Recreation Island

Known as one of the few places that is simultaneously both in Nebraska and South Dakota, Goat Island (affectionately called Jake’s Island) offers a multitude of recreational activities. The possibilities for outdoor recreation enthusiasts include but are not limited to camping, hiking, biking, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, hunting, bird watching, and guided tours. Because of its unique terrain characteristics, Goat Island is a safe haven for providing important wildlife habitats.

Though the overall landscape has changed with time and while the area is not specifically cited in the Lewis and Clark journals, a geologic and riverine scientific study suggests a high probability the island existed during the passage of their expedition in 1803 and 1806. Today the 800-acre property supports a wide variety of wildlife on its sandbars and within its dense forested areas of cottonwood and Eastern red-cedar. Chutes paralleling the island, free-flowing water, vegetation, and sandbars not only provide important wildlife habitat but add to the aesthetic qualities of the Park’s 59-Mile District.


Contact Information

Missouri National Recreational River
Reservations and Information:

508 East 2nd Street, Yankton, South Dakota 57078, United States

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Other Information

  • Hours Open

    Missouri National Recreational River is open every day of the year. The National Park Service operates a Visitor Contact Station inside their Yankton, South Dakota park headquarters. This office is open 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and closed on Sundays and all federal holidays.
  • Seasons Open

    Open year round
  • Prices and Fees

    The daily permit is $6.00 per vehicle.
  • Eco Friendly Notes

    The Goat Island Management Plan emphasizes the intent to retain the primitive character of the island in permanency. The overarching goal and management objectives outlined in the plan is to provide a quality recreational experience for visitors in the same spirit that historically contributed to the island’s popularity.