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Indianapolis, IN: Whitewater Red Springs

Peek into a wildflower-filled ravine, a ruddy-colored seep spring, and the Hornbeam Nature Preserve on this rugged 1.1-mile loop in Indiana’s third largest state park.

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Established in 1949 as a living tribute to local veterans, Whitewater Memorial State Park has over 9 miles of hiking trails and a recreational lake that make it an excellent day trip destination from Indianapolis. This easy counterclockwise loop hits two of the park’s most interesting features: a large, ruddy-colored seep spring and the Hornbeam Nature Preserve.
From the nature preserve parking area, the trail dips into a wooded ravine heading south toward Silver Creek. Though this hike is short, the trail is rugged en route to Red Springs just before mile 0.5. An observation platform alongside the bubbling spring offers a peek at the swirling waters and an ideal mid-hike rest point. The trail climbs the hillside again before crossing the park road and turning west through the heavily forested south side of the Hornbeam Nature Preserve, notable for the high concentration of hardwoods, its rough-barked cousin the American hophornbeam, and fantastic spring wildflowers. The last half of the trail climbs gently back toward the trailhead and preserve parking area.
-Mapped by Swati Gunale

To Trailhead

I-70 E to exit 151A. Drive south for almost 3 miles before jogging west at N. D St. Head south on 8th Ave. (becomes US 27 and IN 101 in Liberty). Two miles south of Liberty, turn right onto Whitewater State Park Rd. Continue 2.8 miles to the nature preserve parking area.

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