Hiking Project Logo

Trail 9

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.7 (45) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

Perhaps the best trail in Northwest Indiana with incredible views of Lake Michigan.


Your Rating:      Clear Rating
Your Difficulty:
Your Favorites: Add to Favorites · Your List
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

3.6

Miles

5.8

KM

Loop

684' 209 m

High

606' 185 m

Low

99' 30 m

Up

100' 31 m

Down

1%

Avg Grade (1°)

9%

Max Grade (5°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · Views

Pets permitted on a leash (6' or shorter). Swimming is permitted only at the Pavilion when lifeguards are present (Memorial Day through Labor Day).

Overview

This is the definitive trail in the dunes. It combines hiking through mature forests and along the top of a dune ridge overlooking Lake Michigan. The views are incredible. The gem of this trail is Beach House Blowout, a huge bowl of sand. The trail winds along its narrow edge affording views in every direction.

Need to Know

There is an entrance fee to the State Park. Everyday mid-April through mid-November. Weekends only in the winter. $7 per car for Indiana residents, $12 per car for out of state. $2 walk-in and bike fee.

Description

Park at the Nature Center parking lot. The trailhead is well marked. The preferred route is to stay on Trail 9 for its entire length. At the base of Beach House Blowout, stay low (to the right) to hike the loop in a counter-clockwise direction. This will keep you low through the forest on the way out.

At the farthest point, the trail will turn to the left and climb up the dune. Lake Michigan will come into view. The trail returns along the ridge line culminating at Big Beach House Blowout. The views and topography are incredible. The trail literally falls off the back out the blowout and returns to the Nature Center using the same trail.

History & Background

The Indiana Dunes State Park was established in 1925 and contains 2,182 acres of land. The park is home to the tallest sand dunes in the area and approach 200 feet in height. The park contains a diverse range of beach, forest, and wetland habitats. As a result, this is an incredible spot for birding. There are three miles of pristine beaches along the Lake Michigan shoreline.

Visit the State Park website for information on programs, camping, and other activities.

Contacts

Shared By:

Rafi Wilkinson

Trail Ratings

  4.7 from 45 votes

#146

Overall
  4.7 from 45 votes
5 Star
76%
4 Star
22%
3 Star
2%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in Indiana

#146

Overall
273 Views Last Month
16,403 Since Jan 29, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
2%
59%
12%
27%
0%

Photos

Beach House Blowout panorama.
Jan 29, 2016 near Beverly…, IN
Awesome view of Lake Michigan at Beach House Blowout on Trail 9.
Jan 29, 2016 near Beverly…, IN
The views from the dune ridge are incredible!
Jan 29, 2016 near Beverly…, IN
Hiking along the ridge of of the Beach House Blowout.
Jan 29, 2016 near Beverly…, IN
Coming into the Beach House Blowout.
Jan 29, 2016 near Beverly…, IN
Enjoying the colors on Trail 9.
Jan 29, 2016 near Beverly…, IN

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 28 days ago See History
Add Your Check-In

Check-Ins

Sep 29, 2020
Rebecca Ashby
Best trail at dunes
Sep 19, 2020
Lily Adams
2mi
Sep 19, 2020
Julia Melton
Trail 9 4.3mi — 1h 45m
Sep 6, 2020
Erica Graphman
3.6mi
Aug 30, 2020
Scott Moosey
Nice hike with beautiful views of Lake Michigan. — 10h 00m
Aug 23, 2020
Scott S
Aug 7, 2020
Nicole G
Aug 3, 2020
Todd Nelson
Great hike, pristine beaches, loved listening to waives while hiking along the dune ridge. Problem with the trail being poorly marked.