Hike the Turkey Run Trail System

Marshall, Indiana

based on 4 reviews



14 miles

Route Type



Added by Kathie Green

Hike through a beautiful, unique landscape, of riverside trails. Ready for another adventure post hike, there are nearby canoe and kayak rentals.

Turkey Run State Park is one of Indiana's most beautiful hidden gems. The fourteen miles of trails that intertwine Sugar Creek range from beginner to advanced and are easily accessible from the the park's visitor center. With the longest trail stretching only two miles, Turkey Run's trail system is perfect for day hikes or a weekend adventure.

These trails run through a system of deep canyons that are unique among Indiana's typical flatland areas. As you navigate the sandstone walls, you're able to discover nearly invisible side canyons and crevasses.

Following the path behind the visitor center or from the park's nearby campsite, you'll find yourself at the banks of Sugar Creek. From there you can explore the larger amphitheater-like canyons or cross the suspension bridge to navigate the deeper ravines. The Turkey Run trail system is essentially one continuous trail that leads to points of interest throughout the park. By taking a look at the trail map (link below), you'll be able to visit each captivating landmark such as Gypsy Gulch, Falls Canyon and Camel's Back.

Trail Map: http://www.indianaoutfitters.com/Maps/state_park_maps/turkeyofmap.htm

If floating down stream is more your style, there is a canoe and kayak rental business just down the road from the park's entrance. Loading you into a van, prepped with paddles and life jackets, you'll be shuttled upstream and launched into the water. During these self guided trips, you'll pass under two of Indiana's historic covered bridges and the suspension bridge, mentioned earlier. With thirty minute intervals between shuttle services, you're able to take your time and explore along the river.

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Hike the Turkey Run Trail System Reviews

This park has tons of trails of varying difficulty and topography! My personal favorite is the one with the ladders - you start out in a cavern, walking down between two cliffs, and then must climb a series of ladders to get to the upper trail! It can definitely be crowded in the summer or during the Covered Bridge Festival time in the area, but going when the fall colors are out is my favorite!

As I stated in another review for Turkey Run, it can be quite busy, so plan your visit accordingly. It is worth that visit, though, so do go ahead and plan it if you live nearby! There are many many miles of trails, all varying in difficulty. Some are just paths while others have ladders or require slowly shuffling along rock faces next to streams. I prefer the harder ones, and the hike with the Devils Punch Bowl was for sure a fun one.

My neice and I hiked several trails in Turkey Run with a break along the river. We hiked the canyon and the Forest. The old growth forest was beautiful but the canyon was awesome. Two totally different landscape. I will return here.

I took my 9 yr old son with me for his first hike. We hiked 8 miles through beginner legs and into more advanced stuff. It was a beautiful day, so a bit crowded. If an isolated hike is what you are searching for, steer clear of Turkey Run on weekends. It's very busy. I highly recommend the place though. Trails are well maintained and the park has built assistance (steps, ladders) to enable you to see parts you may otherwise miss. Beautiful place.

Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!


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