Discover three little known hiking gems at Indian Lake.
Indian Lake is very well known for its many nautical recreational activities such as boating, jet skiing, fishing, sailing, swimming, summer beach parties and much more. One thing it is really not known for is hiking. That’s too bad because hiking is a very rewarding and fun outdoor activity that gets you back to nature. It’s also good exercise and doesn’t really cost any money to do.
The fact is that most people who visit Indian Lake and many people who even live at Indian Lake are unaware of excellent hiking opportunities the lake has to offer.
Although under the radar and underutilized, these little known trails are very well maintained and considered hidden treasures at the lake by avid local hikers and trail runners.
In fact, a group of Realtors from Choice Properties of Russells Point just recently performed some trail maintenance work on one of the hiking trails at Indian Lake. “We spent the day sprucing up the Cherokee Hiking Trail at Indian Lake State Park as part of a volunteer day with the local United Way,” said Paige Duff of Choice Properties. “It’s a wonderful hiking trail and the trail work itself was very rewarding also.” added Duff.
Now that the word is out, get your hiking boots on and get out and take advantage of “Indian Lake’s Triple Crown of Trails.” Enjoy nature at one or more of these three little-known and seldom-used hiking trails at Indian Lake. You’re gonna love it!
Cherokee Hiking Trail
This three mile trail meanders through brushy and secluded habitat. The trail is relatively flat and rated easy to hike. Enjoy wooded views and beautiful wildlife scenes. Great for trail running also.
The main entrance is located off State Route 235 just west of the State Park Campground.
John and Mary Rudolph Nature Area Hiking Trail
Check out the fantastic trail system within this relatively new nature area donated by John and Mary Rudolph. It is part of a 52 acre, $500,000 Indian Lake Great Miami River Open Space Project that started in 2011.
The trail is open daily from dusk to dawn and is relatively flat and easy to hike. Hike through wetlands, a prairie and enjoy beautiful and rarely seen views of the eastern border of the Great Miami River.
You may encounter wildlife such as deer, rabbit, turkey, heron and quail. There are also some incredible ominous backdrop views of the Honda windmills moving in harmony with the wind and the natural setting of the area.
The main entrance and parking area is located off Lincoln Boulevard in Russells Point.
Pew Island Hiking Trail
Enjoy stunning views of the lake on this one mile loop around Pew Island. Lakeside parking is pretty much available right at the trail-head via the causeway access.
The landscape is beautifully-forested and diverse with some minor hills and twist and turns including a few connecting off-trails to hidden hills, pits and other nature gems. The difficulty rating for this trail is easy to moderate.
A beautiful wooden boardwalk through a marshy wetland is a top feature of this trail in addition to some of the best panoramic views you’ll find anywhere on Indian Lake. Be sure to bring your camera, especially around sunset.
The main entrance is off Buckeye Drive on Pew Island. Go past Cranberry Resort on Seminole Island, stay on Buckeye Drive, go over the causeway and Pew Island parking is on the right.
Ron Brohm is a regular contributor to this newspaper.