COLUMN: Get Out And Explore Our State Parks

Monday, August 16, 2021 at 1:15 PM

By State Rep. Randy Frye (R-Greensburg), guest column

You can start locally at Versailles State Park and Clifty Falls State Park.

Now is a great time to get out and explore Indiana's natural beauty, and you don’t have to travel far to reach 1 of 24 state parks with an abundance of trails, lakes, waterfalls and caves. In fact, a state park is within an hour's drive for every Hoosier, with opportunities to improve our physical and mental health, and learn more about our state's environment. In our area, we are fortunate to be the home of two state parks, including Clifty Falls State Park and Versailles State Park. 

Clifty Falls State Park, which is along the Ohio River near historic Madison, is named after the many waterfalls located throughout the park. There are four named waterfalls and a dozen more to explore. Along with rugged terrain, this park offers an impressive view of the Ohio River and our neighboring state of Kentucky. Hiking trails, campsites, tennis courts and a pool are a few of the amenities offered, along with the famous Clifty Inn and Restaurant.

Versailles State Park in Ripley County is the second-largest park in Indiana and the epicenter for outdoor enthusiasts. In addition to hiking, cycling and equestrian trails, this park offers water recreation for fishing and swimming.

Both of these parks are a part of Indiana's state park system that includes eight reservoirs, 700 miles of trails and 7,700 campsites. Collectively, these are sources of affordable adventures close to home. For fun, sign up to receive the State Nature Passport to earn prizes when visiting designated parks, forests and lakes throughout Indiana. More information and downloadable passports can be found online at [VisitIndiana.com]VisitIndiana.com.

I hope everyone can get out and explore Indiana's natural beauty. To learn more and find a nearby state park, visit in.gov/dnr.

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