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Pokagon State Park is located near Angola, just off I-69. The park was originally called Lake James State Park when proposed to be the fifth Indiana State Park in 1925. The name was changed to Pokagon State Park to acknowledge the rich Native American heritage of the state and region. Leopold and Simon Pokagon were father and son and the last two most notable leaders of the Potawatomi. The park’s Potawatomi Inn takes its name from these Native Americans, who made their home in the area. The inn, with its up-north fishing-lodge theme, is one of the Midwest’s most popular resorts and conference centers.
Being one of the state’s original parks, Pokagon features the unique work of the Civilian Conservation Corps, whose members lived and worked at Pokagon from 1934 to 1942. The “boys of the CCC” built the beautiful stone and log structures that dot the park landscape and provide accent to the rolling wooded hills, wetlands and open meadows.
Natural lakes created by glaciers that melted 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, highlight Steuben County, which has more lakes than any other Indiana county. The park is framed by Lake James and Snow Lake, which offer abundant opportunities for boating, swimming, fishing and scenic sunsets.
Pokagon is also Indiana State Parks’ winter wonderland, with cross-country ski rental, sledding, ice fishing and a twin-track toboggan run... “What a thrill!”… That's what you'll say once you've experienced the quarter-mile, refrigerated toboggan run at speeds of 35-40 mph. The toboggan run operates weekends from the Friday after Thanksgiving through February, with extended hours during the Christmas holidays. For hours, more information, and to take a virtual ride, visit www.tobogganrun.com.
The purchase and development of this site is a highly visible example of a public-private partnership to promote outdoor recreation, conserve land and preserve water quality.
Development has included the evaluation and removal of many buildings and other structures, repair/replacement of infrastructure, renovation of facilities, restoration of natural features and construction of a new welcome center.
The site has a long and well-known history in Steuben County and has historic connections to Pokagon State Park. The site will be managed as a unit of Pokagon.
Camping - See campground maps under MAPS tab
DESCRIPTION OF HIKING TRAILS
Note: For trail locations, view the property map under the MAPS tab.
1. MODERATE (2 miles)—Trail from Inn past Nature Center to Apple Orchard picnic area through hardwood forest. Crosses road at bridge, continues as the bicycle trail to saddle barn and back to Inn. A good trail for woodland birds and spring flowers.
2. MODERATE (2.2 miles)—Begins on main park road near gatehouse, goes through rolling land, past Spring Shelter, through hardwood forest. Terminates at Campground 1.
3. MODERATE (2.2 miles)—Interesting trail leading through Potawatomi Nature Preserve, with varied habitats of marsh land, deep hardwood forests, pines and sand hills; panoramic view of area from trail overlook at Hell’s Point. Returns to Potawatomi Inn.
4. EASY (1.4 mile)—Begins near gatehouse (with Trail 2) and extends to Trail 5 through campgrounds near amphitheatre. A variety of habitats is offered in pine trees, hardwood forest and rolling land.
5. EASY (.7 mile)—Begins near Campground 1 and goes past Group Camp to beach; passes through deep woods; a good trail to observe birds and spring flowers.
6. MODERATE (.7 mile)—Trail through primitive area, including swamp. Begins and ends on Trail 3. A good trail to observe marshland plants and animals.
7. BLUEBIRD HILLS TRAIL-MODERATE (1.8 miles)—The trail starts just below Hell’s Point on Trail 3 and makes a large loop before returning to the starting point. This is mostly open, rolling hills. Grasslands support native prairie plants typical of the land before it was farmed. Restored wetlands among the hills provide homes for many species that prefer this habitat.
8. MODERATE (1 mile)—Our newest trail leaves Trail 3 just west of Hell’s Point and heads north, crosses a county road, and traverses open, rolling hills, which are being managed to return to meadowlands. Future plans will connect trail to the nearby ACRES Land Trust Beechwood Nature Preserve.
9. MODERATELY RUGGED (1.7 miles)—Leaves Trail 3 and goes east through wooded swamps and young forests. Touches the former site of the “Pokagon Motel” on Indiana 127, near-69, passes by Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC)-built stone dams, and returns to Trail 3.
PLEASE STAY ON MARKED TRAILS.