Details

Distance

1.5 miles

Elevation Gain

320 ft

Route Type

Loop

Description

Added by Dan Barr

Western Indiana is home to a series of parks home to deep sandstone canyons and ravines, and one of the best places to experience these natural wonders in solitude is Shades State Park and the loop around the Devil's Punch Bowl.

Starting at the central parking lot near the pond, follow the signs for Trail 1, which will take you down through a set of steps and boardwalks to the bottom of a steep canyon. From there, simply follow the canyon downstream. 

The canyon trail terminates at Silver Cascade Falls, a unique convex waterfall that flows over a series of siltstone before dropping to the river valley floor below. From the waterfall overlook, backtrack less than 0.1 mile to a series of stairs that climbs up out of the canyon atop a forested plateau with fantastic views of Sugar Creek below from Inspiration and Prospect Points. From there, simply follow  Trail 1 back to the pond trailhead. 

The trails within the canyons in Shades State Park follow the streambed for the majority of the hike, so be prepared with appropriate footwear. YakTrax/Microspikes in the wintertime are almost required, as ice is still present even when temperatures are are in the 50s within the shady ravines. 

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Features

Hiking
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Forest
River
Scenic

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