Are you itching for an adventure in nature? Have you considered hiking northern Indiana? Trust me, it’s an experience you won’t forget! Imagine winding trails that take you through hills and valleys covered in lush greenery, or strolling along the shores of serene lakes while breathing in the fresh air. Northern Indiana has an abundance of scenic hiking trails that cater to all levels of hikers.
There’s nothing quite like hiking through nature and experiencing all the wildlife it has to offer, and northern Indiana is no exception. As you traverse the scenic trails, you’ll encounter all sorts of creatures, from soaring raptors to scurrying chipmunks and everything in between. It’s a truly magical experience that’s perfect for family and friends looking to spend some quality time together while surrounded by picturesque scenery.
This article has got you covered with the best places to hike in northern Indiana. We’ll take you through the top trails and show you the most scenic routes, so you can have an unforgettable adventure and create lasting memories with your loved ones. So, if you’re ready to explore the great outdoors and embark on your next adventure, let’s get started!
UPDATED March 2023
Northern Indiana Hiking Trails
Ouabache State Park, Bluffton, IN
Pronounced “Wabash” .
13 miles of hiking trails ranging from 1 mile to 6 miles give you the option to choose your adventure. If you want to see it all, I suggest trail 5 ( 6miles), which will take you through almost all terrain types available.
While you’re there, check out the Bison exhibit
Have you heard of the Bloodroot Trail? It’s an awesome hiking and biking trail located on Salamonie Lake near Andrews, Indiana. This 13-mile trail is perfect for adventurers who love a challenge!
Whether you’re up for a long day hike or a backpacking trip, the Bloodroot Trail won’t disappoint. And the best part? You can camp along the way! There are six campsites available for reservation, so you can take your time and really enjoy the stunning scenery that surrounds you.
Read: Indiana Backpacking Trails which features the Bloodroot Trail
Pokagon State Park, Angola, IN
Hell’s Point Challenge
This challenge is an 8.2 mile loop that leads you all over the state park. You’ll traverse wooded area, wetland, bridges, and a lookout tower that’s sure to test the strength of your legs. Autumn is a really great time to hike this one. The view of the colorful trees from the top of the lookout tower is gorgeous. Don’t forget to stop in to the visitor center to get your freebies for completing the trail!
Bonneyville Mill County Park, Bristol, IN
The trails wind through beautiful wooded areas, leading you to stunning bodies of water, charming wooden towers with breathtaking views of the forest, and rolling hills that’ll take your breath away. And the best part? These trails are perfect for hikers of all ages and skill levels.
Prepare to embark on a wildlife adventure at Bonneyville! The trails are teeming with all sorts of critters that’ll get your kids excited, from bountiful frogs to adorable rabbits and majestic deer. One time, we stumbled upon a puddle overflowing with tadpoles – the kids were absolutely thrilled!
But that’s not all – the trails at Bonneyville are also home to some harmless water snakes, which are always a thrill to spot. And if you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of a playful raccoon on the prowl.
France Park, Logansport
The beauty here is absolutely breathtaking, and the hiking trails are both invigorating and enjoyable. As someone who has explored many hiking destinations in Northern Indiana, I can confidently say that this park stands out as one of my all-time favorites.
The best part about this park is that it offers a unique experience no matter what time of year you visit. Imagine the vibrant, fiery leaves of autumn framing the scenic quarry or the frozen waterfall creating an icy wonderland in the winter. It’s truly a sight to behold!
One of the great things about this park is that there are two distinct areas to explore, each with its own charm. If you’re in the mood for some adventure and want to see stunning views, head to the quarry area. Here, you can hike up the cliffs to get panoramic views of the bright blue waters below. Alternatively, you can venture through the woods along the water and discover hidden gems along the way.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a peaceful, calming experience, the wooded/waterfall area is the perfect spot for you. Take in the natural beauty of the falls from the bottom before crossing the bridge to begin your journey. As you make your way through the woods, you’ll come across several tiny waterfalls and streams, all while surrounded by the peaceful sounds of nature.
All in all, this park is a haven for hikers
Indiana Dunes National Park and Indiana Dunes State Park
Cowles Bog Trail
This trail is an explorer’s dream come true, as it offers a diverse range of habitats to discover. From tranquil swamps and serene ponds to lush marshes and breathtaking beaches, the scenery is constantly changing as you make your way through the trail.
3 Dune Challenge
If you’re looking for a challenging hike, this one is for you! 552 vertical feet consisting of sand and stairs, Indiana Dunes says this hike is the equivalent to climbing 55 flights of stairs. This trail will definitely push your limits and leave you feeling a sense of accomplishment! Check out their page for more fun facts and info on hiking the 3 Dunes Challenge.
Great Marsh Trail
The short but serene loop trail is great for birdwatchers and those who love to observe the lives of wetland wildlife, (like me!). The trail starts in a gravel parking lot and leads you into the woods where you’ll twist and curve a bit until you come to a T in the trail. If you go left here, you’ll be lead to the Marsh Overlook, where a spectacular view of the marsh and, if you’re lucky, some of the many birds that like to hang out there.
After getting your fill of the marsh, head back toward the T and continue straight to finish the trail. This section of trail gives you some great views across large areas where you can see a lot of different vegetation and cattails.
So, have you been itching to get out of the house and immerse yourself in nature? Hiking in northern Indiana is the perfect way to do just that! With a variety of trails to choose from, you’ll find breathtaking views, diverse landscapes, and challenges to fit any skill level. From dense forests to rolling hills and winding rivers, the scenery alone is worth the trip. As a seasoned hiker myself, I can attest to the beauty and thrill of exploring the trails in northern Indiana. So, whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner, don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to connect with nature and discover the beauty of hiking in northern Indiana.