Posted on May 21, 2012 by Indiana's Cool North
Where: Shipshewana and Goshen
Length: 13 Miles
The Pumpkinvine trail covers 13 miles of bike trail with only 1.5 miles of it on an actual road. This trail connects Shipshewana to Goshen and is broken up into two different sections. This trail will take bikers over rivers and wind them through the beautiful Amish country side. This is a perfect way to take in the Amish lifestyle by passing horse and buggies, farms, country schools, and flower gardens. This trail was given the name Pumpkinvine because of its turns and curves. Once bikers have reached Goshen, and if they feel like continuing on, they can jump right onto the 9-mile Mapleheart Trail, which takes them from Goshen to Elkhart.
Where: Hively Avenue, Elkhart - CR 17, Goshen
Length: 4.8 Miles
Where one trail ends, another one begins. At the end of the Pumkinvine Trail in Goshen, bikers can find a 3-mile extension trail that will lead them to the Mapleheart Trail, which takes them from the heart of Goshen to the south side of Elkhart. This trail is nearly 5 miles long and takes bikers through the beautiful Oxbow Park. Oxbow gets its name from the bow like bend in the Elkhart River. As bikers travel through Oxbow Park, riders will have the opportunity to enjoy natural plants and wildlife habitats. Along with the beauty of nature, riders can also stop and enjoy a game of horseshoe, disk golf, canoe launch, archery range, and playgrounds for the kids.
Where: SR51 in Hobart - 15th Street in Chesterton
Length: 10.4 Miles
The Prairie Duneland Trail truly is the “crown jewel” of Indiana bike trails. This 10-foot wide concrete path stretches over 10 miles through one of the most beautiful natural and unique ecosystems in Indiana. Throughout this trail the landscape is constantly changing, from the suburbs to a thick engulfing hardwood forest to the remnant prairies, which the trail was named after. This trail is well groomed and maintained. Not just bikers are welcome here, inline skates, walkers, and cross country skiers (in the winter) are all welcome to enjoy this trail. This trail is also wheelchair accessible. This lush and protected environment is a great way to relax and spend a day outside with the family. This trail starts in Chesterton and ends in Hobart.
Where: North Liberty
Length: 6.7 Miles
Potato Creek State Park has many great outdoor activities for the whole family. One of those recreations is their 6.7-mile beginner level bike path. This path weaves through the thick woods that surround the park. This path is great for beginning bikers because of its very smooth flow but also provides a few challenges here and there to spice up the ride. This trail is a mix of paved paths, grassy fields, and dirt paths that are well maintained throughout the summer.
Where: St. Louis Boulevard - Howard Street
Length: 1.2 Miles
Your journey begins in Howard Park. From there the path takes bikers along the river and though many other parks in South Bend. This 1.2 mile easy and relaxing trail is marked by many restrooms and picnic areas. This trail also goes over the South Bend Dam overlooking the East Race Waterway.
Where: Rum Village Nature Center-South Bend
Length: 6 Miles
Volunteers from the Indiana Mountain Bike Association came together to create the Rum Village Pathway. This single track playground will challenge bikers of all levels of experience. This trail is about 5 miles long and full of winding turns through mostly flat woods. It is a fun track to get a good workout in, and they have trails for all levels of experience.
Where: Cowles Bog Trailhead - Indiana Dunes Nat'l Lakeshore
Length: 9.1 Miles
Get lost in nature on this dirt and crushed limestone path that takes a rider through forests, marshes, dunes, and beaches. This 9.1-mile trail runs parallel with the South Shore Rail Line. Along this trail, a rider will be able to see the Cowles Bog, an 8,000-year-old marshland, and Mount Baldy, a 123-foot tall sand dune. This trail is littered with beautiful wildflowers in late summer such as cardinal flowers, blazing stars, asters, and great blue lobelia just to name a few. This trail borders the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and Indiana Dunes State Park.