Turkey Run State park
With over 14 miles of easy to very rugged trails, hiking is one of the most popular activities at Turkey Run State Park. (Sorry, bicycles must remain on paved public roads.)
Turkey Run Trails are Legendary
Deep canyons nestled in the shadows of sandstone cliffs and peaceful hemlock groves harbor some of the most ruggedly beautiful hiking trails in the state. Trails are open from dawn to dusk.
To get to many hiking trails you need to cross the suspension bridge over Sugar Creek. Be warned – it is 70 steps down to the suspension bridge. Upon crossing the bridge you will be in the Rocky Hollow-Falls Canyon Nature Preserve, containing deep sandstone canyons and one of the last remnants of the magnificent forest that originally covered most of Indiana. Please protect and enjoy this priceless heritage.
Hiking trails are open from dawn to dusk. All hikers must be off the trails before dusk.
Turkey Run Trails
The Turkey Run hiking trail numbers on the following list correspond to the trail numbers on the park map. Click on a trail number for pictures of and more information about the trail and its features:
Warning: Many trails, except Trail 11, have portions that use ravine streambeds as trail surface, and sections of those trails can become slick and the trail tread uneven. Parts of these trails may be impassible during high water and should be considered closed during such times. Use alternate trails during high water.
Turkey Run State Park Trail Map
5 Mile Challenge at Turkey Run State Park
This hike has you start at the Nature Center, cross the Suspension Bridge into Rocky Hollow-Falls Canyon Nature Preserve, and take the perimeter trails in one big loop. Hike clockwise and you’ll do the hardest sections first and go down the 140 steps. You’ll also go through three canyons, climb a ladder, and see the historic Lusk Home. Allow 2-3 hours. Do this all in one hike, taking pictures at designated spots, and you can earn a special sticker. Click here for a map and more info on the 5 Mile Challenge.
Turkey Run Trail 1
The big tree trail is a moderate to rugged, 3-mile trail that leads to the historic Narrows Covered Bridge. It takes you by Goose Rock and the Lusk Earth Fill. It ends at Box Canyon on Trail 2. You’ll also find fine sycamores and several huge black walnut trees along this trail.
Turkey Run Trail 2
This rugged 1-mile trail follows under cliff edges, taking you through Box Canyon and Gypsy Gulch before intersecting with Trail 1 near the Lusk Earth Fill. It’s definitely a trail for the more adventurous. Be careful!
Turkey Run Trail 3
This is a very rugged 1.7-mile trail that offers some unusual hiking opportunities.
Following the cliffs along Sugar Creek, Trail 3 passes by the Ice Box. It then turns north and follows between the steep walls of Bear Hollow before returning to the ridgetop by a series of ladders. Be very careful!
Trail 3 later takes you to the Punch Bowl, a pothole that was scoured out by glacial erratics caught in the swirling backwash. The trail then follows between the steep walls of Rocky Hollow, along a creek, and past Wedge Rock on the way back to the Suspension Bridge.
Warning: Ladders are part of Trail 3. Ladders can be hazardous for visitors with some medical conditions or disabilities. Hikers with small children and pets should use alternate trails.
Turkey Run Trail 4
This moderate to rugged 2-mile trail passes the old Coal Mine and follows Sugar Creek upstream to the Narrows Covered Bridge, then up to the Lusk Home. It returns along a stream and joins Trail 3 at the Punch Bowl. Trail 3 then goes through Rocky Hollow back to the Suspension Bridge.
Turkey Run Trail 6
Turkey Run Trail 7
Starting at the campground, this is a moderate 0.7-mile self-guiding nature trail forming a loop through virgin wood and hemlock trees. It offers nice hilltop views of Sugar Creek.
At one point the trail descends into a canyon leading to where the Turkey Run stream joins with Sugar Creek. Here you can cross a footbridge and join up with Trail 6 near Lieber Cabin and the Turkey Run Inn.