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A Walk Down Harrison Trace at Fort Harrison State Park

by Lance Gideon

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA-Early Spring is one of my favorite times of the year, things are coming back to life, new flowers are beginning to bloom. Airing out after another cold Indiana winter is always nice to do on these beautiful days. My family and I recently traveled to Fort Harrison State Park to take a hike down the Harrison Trace Trail and enjoy a beautiful early spring day in Indiana.

As we arrived at the park, I noticed many people were walking around and enjoying a beautiful day. My wife and I parked our car near the Delaware Lake area and got the stroller ready for a hike. We had decided to hike down Harrison Trace, which is paved and easy to push a stroller down. Many people also like riding their bikes down the Harrison Trace trail.

My wife and I started our walk down Harrison Trace and decided to head toward the park’s Shaffer Picnic Area. The hike is about 1 mile in length, about 2 miles round trip, and there are plenty of places to see Mother Nature at her finest, especially this time of year. There were not any leaves on any of the trees quite yet, although most have buds on them, so there is much more to see on a hike. I saw many squirrels running around the woods floor on Harrison Trace and could hear birds singing in the trees. 

My daughter, Rayne, also really enjoyed her ride through the park. She loved listening to those birds and looking at the trees that are on the trail. Rayne also liked seeing the many dogs that enjoy taking their friends out for a hike on the trail. As we reached the picnic area, we came to a bridge that crosses over the Lawrence Creek. Rayne really enjoyed listening to the water as it rippled under the bridge and there was even a dog that was playing in the creek’s water. 

After walking over the bridge, we entered a more open area of the park. The park’s sledding hill is in this area of the park, but sledding is, probably, over until December. This area also has a playground to climb on and many children and adults were playing in the area. Some kids were playing soccer, others were sliding down the slide and swinging on the equipment’s swings. Shortly afterwards, the trail enters the Walnut Plantation area of the park.  

We walked another 20 minutes down Harrison Trace, enjoying the Walnut Trees that had been planted. Once again, Rayne looked around and listened to all the birds that she could hear while riding in her stroller. We also heard an owl while walking down this section of the trail, it was almost dusk and there was chill beginning to set in the air. So, we decided to turn around and head back to our vehicle. Once again walking past the picnic area and into the woods. We eventually arrived at our car, tired but excited to see what spring and summer has in store for us. Rayne was also tired and quickly fell asleep as we drove through the park, on our way home after another awesome visit to this beautiful state park. 


Published: 04/04/2015


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