Most of the campers left Pinicon Ridge Park in Linn County, Iowa, on Sunday (April 26) before a twister ripped apart three recreational vehicles, damaged four others and tore apart trees.
Tom Hazelton, special program manager with Linn County Conservation, said most of the campers left for home before the tornado hit late in the afternoon. Of those who remained, several sought shelter in a shower building. No injuries were reported, however one dog did not survive, according to the Des Moines Register.
The National Weather Service is conducting a survey to find out where tornadoes touched down on Sunday. A report was expected later today.
For now Hazelton and others at the park 30 miles north of Iowa City do not doubt that it was a tornado. A path about 200 feet wide was cut through the timber near the campgrounds. Old oak and pine trees were lost in the campground.
“Hundreds of trees have been lost,” Hazelton said. “It’s hard to put a price tag on those. We’re estimating about $70,000 to $100,000 for repairs and cleanup.”
He said the campground was packed on Saturday night. It’s fortunate that it didn’t happen then.
“A lot of people saw it approach the park from the west,” Hazelton said. “It didn’t make the train sound that you hear about. But you can see the path it took through the timber.”