Turkey Run State Park

We had unseasonably warm weather in February 2017 when Jess came to visit for the weekend, while I was dog-sitting for my Pap. As you’ve probably realized if you’ve read any of my other posts, Jess and I always go on some sort of adventure when we are together, whether it be a road-trip, National Park, or a state park, and this visit was no different. We decided to knock another item off our very long (and ever growing) bucket lists – Turkey Run State Park. We had visited what I call Turkey Run’s little sister, Shades State Park, the year before and loved it.

turkey run

Pap’s dog, Buddy, was in need of some exercise so he joined on our adventure.

turkey run 6

Jess, Buddy and I turned trails 1, 3, 5, and 9 into a large loop. We wanted to see as much as we could of the park while avoiding ladders, since we had Buddy. However, I quickly learned that Buddy is not afraid of heights and will get as close to the edge as possible, especially on stairs.

turkey run 4

So while Buddy could have used the exercise, it ended up being me who got the workout carrying him up and down all the stairs. At one point, in Boulder Canyon, we had to scramble up some rocks and I just gave up and stuck him in my backpack. He loved it. Pap swears Buddy only weights 10 pounds, but after carrying him a good portion of 3.5 miles, I begged to differ. I weighted him when we got home, he weights over 13 pounds!

turkey run 2
Suspension Bridge

One of my favorite parts of the hike was walking across the Suspension Bridge. I know that suspension bridges move, but actually feeling it sway as I walked on it was really cool! Made me feel like a little kid on the playground.

The “140 Steps” section was also memorable, there were so many stairs.

turkey run 5
How often do you get to wear shorts and a tank top in the middle of February in Indiana?

Rocky Hollow and Wedge Rock were also impressive, but there were a ridiculous number of people, especially screaming small children, and it was stressful watching out for them, carrying Buddy, and trying not to fall in the water. Luckily, I was able to make it out with only one soaked foot. I would like to go back early in the day before all the people show up and get more pictures.

turkey run 3


UPDATE: February 2018 (apparently February is when I go to Turkey Run State Park)

I put together a Women Who Hike Indiana group hike at Turkey Run. A lot of the trails across the Suspension Bridge were closed due to flooding. Trails 1, 2, and part of 4 were not flooded so we did those trails.

I really liked Trails 1 and 2. Trail 1 follows near Sugar Creek and Trail 2 is up the ridge from Trail 1. Both offer great views from different perspectives.

newby gulch
Newby Gulch

Trail 1 starts at the Turkey Run Inn, goes down the ’70 Steps’ towards the Suspension Bridge, then hangs a right, passes Goose Rock, and follows Sugar Creek to the Narrows Covered Bridge.

goose rock trail 1
Goose Rock
narrows covered bridge
Narrows Covered Bridge

narrows bridge 2

narrows 3

Trail 2 is the adventurous version of Trail 1. It involves stairs, boardwalks, and winding around fallen rocks.

trail 2.2
Gypsy Gulch waterfall

With all the rain Indiana had been getting there was a decent waterfall in Gypsy Gulch.


lusk earth fill trail 2
Lusk Earth Fill

Trail 2 connects back to Trail 1 at the Narrows Covered Bridge via the Lusk Earth Fill. It was built in 1880 and served as a county road.

We also hiked the lower half of Trail 4 that runs along the other side of Sugar Creek and passes the old Coal Mine. We picked up Trail 4 via the Narrows Covered Bridge and were rewarded with a new view of the bridge.

Narrows Covered Bridge
coal mine

We all had a great time meeting each other and making new friends.


Maybe next February I’ll finish off the rest of my Turkey Run State Park Bucket List haha!

Bucket List:

  • the rest of Trail 4
  • Trail 8
  • Trail 10