Think Before You Beach
Crowds spread COVID-19, but you can help to fight the spread of COVID-19 by putting on a face mask, EVEN OUTDOORS.
Yes, the Indiana Dunes National Park is open for the most part.
But, there are closures in still in place, and we ask visitors to abide by these closures for their safety as well as for the safety of other park visitors. Since we are under the authority of national and state CoronaVirus (COVID-19) guidelines, park closures are in a constant state of flux, and we must adjust to these orders as they develop.
Indiana Dunes National Park COVID-19 Open and Closure Dates:
The Dorothy Buell Memorial Visitor Center, jointly managed by Porter County Tourism and the National Park Service, is open as of Sunday, June 14th in keeping with the Sate of Indiana’s Back on Track plan. The visitor center’s operations will be modified to promote social distancing and safe practices and will initially be open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. daily. The Paul H. Douglas Center for Environmental Education also reopened on June 14. These opening dates are subject to change if there is a change in the Covid 19 pandemic.
Other Temporary Closures, for Public Safety:
Due to erosion, portions of Lake Front Drive in Beverly Shores and Central Avenue Beach are closed.
We recommend West Beach and here's some reasons why:
1. Parking - 660 parking spaces! More than the entire east-side of the national park’s combined spaces are located at West Beach.
2. Trails - Three different loops and four miles of great hiking.
3. Grill/Picnic Area – Shaded grilling areas.
4. Flower lovers: Various wildflowers are in bloom, so now is the best time to grab your camera for some great nature pictures!
Please be safe and keep social distancing in mind while enjoying your stay here at the park, and be sure to take back what you bring with you.
Times are tough right now, but if you need a nice place to visit in the park, think West Beach!
Occasionally Flooded Trails:
Caution: the Tolleston Dunes, Glenwood Dunes, Paul H. Douglas (Miller Woods) and Upland hiking trails have flooding, please take any necessary precautions. We recommend the West Beach Trails.
Cowles Bog parking lot full?ATTENTION: Temporary Closure - Cowles Bog North Parking Lot
Wednesday July 15, the Cowles Bog north parking lot will be closed and under construction.
Check out our extra parking available at the park headquarters located at 1100 N. Mineral Springs Rd, Porter, IN 46304. It's a bit of a journey, but parking here is legal. Anywhere else, beside the Cowles Bog lot, you'll be ticketed.
We recommend walking down the Porter Brickyard Bike Trail near the West end of the parking lot (see map, enter at green "X").
Be on the lookout this summer for rip currents on Lake Michigan.
Before your next visit to the beach, learn how to spot a rip current and what to do if you get caught in one. Always check the local beach forecast for any warnings, and exercise caution.
IF CAUGHT IN A RIP CURRENT
♦ Don't fight the current
Unmanned Aircraft (e.g. model airplanes, quadcopters, drones)Launching, landing or operating unmanned aircraft from or on lands and waters administered by the National Park Service within the boundaries of Indiana Dunes National Park is prohibited except as approved in writing by the park.
Calumet Dunes Trail Temporarily Inaccessible to Wheelchairs:
Due to recent construction along the Calumet Dunes trail, returning to the parking lot, near the south side of the CDIC building, this trail will not be fully accessible to wheelchairs. The trail is still open, but part of the section under construction would be bare ground. Check back here or our social media for when construction will be complete. Please plan accordingly.
Know your beach's weather conditions and please use caution.
Event Cancellations:Due to the Covid 19 pandemic and not being able to provide adequate social distancing at festivals and special events, we are cancelling this September's Indiana Dunes Apple Festival and the Century of Progress House Tours. We hope to be able to resume both special events safely in 2021.
Last updated: July 31, 2020