Fisherman's Corner Recreation area has become one of the premier campgrounds on the banks of the Mississippi River. Located just above Lock and Dam 14 in Hampton, this busy little park has a wonderful view of Lock and Dam 14 and the small nearby marsh just above the dam is full of wildlife.
The locks and dam located here are part of a much larger system of 29 locks and dams on the Upper Mississippi River. This series of locks and dams operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers maintains a nine-foot channel on the Mississippi from St. Paul, MN to St. Louis, MO.
Pleasure craft, towboats and barges all use this "stairway of water" to travel the river segments which were once too shallow to navigate. The marsh is home to countless numbers of waterfowl, shore birds, and even several flocks of white pelicans. With a name like Fisherman's Corner, there has to be fishing. Shoreline fishing is available at the separate Fisherman's Corner South day use area, adjacent to the campgrounds. The open water below Lock and Dam 14 provides nearly year-round fishing for walleye, sauger, catfish, blue gill, striped bass and freshwater drum.
Across the river from Fisherman's Corner is another recreation area known as Smith's Island. It is a day use area designed for walkers, runners and people who enjoy the great outdoors. There is great fishing all around the island and you are welcome to try your luck. There are two picnic shelters with electricity and water to provide a wonderful place to gather for lunch with two open grills for cooking.
Smith's Island does not flood because of its higher elevation and close proximity to Lock and Dam 14. Therefore, many species of trees and plants found on Smith's Island are rarely found on any other island on the Upper Mississippi River floodplain.