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Don't Overlook These Outdoor Hidden Gems

The Huntington County area is well known for being the place to go for outdoor recreation! Don't miss out on some of our lesser known hidden outdoor gems.Here's a list of our 10 most favorite.

Overlook at Evergreen Park and Arboretum

One of our favorite trails is the one mile loop at Evergreen Park in Huntington. A favorite of visitors and locals, is to stop at one of the several overlooks perched above the Wabash River to relax, breathe in the wonderful nature and maybe even do a little bird watching. Recently, the City of Huntington planted 40 native species of trees in their adjoining Arboretum. This will be a growing attraction as the trees mature and additional paths are created.

Left overlook

Sunrise at Roush Dam

Looking for a place for spectacular sunrises? The overlook at Roush Dam is where you need to head to see beautiful sunrises that fill up and paint the morning sky. Make sure you bring your camera and binoculars if you want to do a little bird watching while you are there. Photo credit: DJ Unger, Army Corp of Engineers

Roush Sunrise credit DJ Unger US Army Corp of Engineers

Lake Clare Obstacle Course

Definitely not for the faint of heart, the Obstacle Course at Lake Clare in Huntington is designed to build stamina, strength and agility in a boot camp type setting. Open from dawn to dusk, test out your skills as you move through a carefully constructed set of over 20 challenges including rope and wall climbing, pull up bars and balance activities. There is a also a separate set of activities for your children. Please exercise caution with the obstacle course as injury is possible. Participation is at your own risk.

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Markle Pool

One of the best places to swim in the area is Markle Pool, located at the Markle Fish and Game Club Park. This quarry was transformed into the community's swimming beach in 1921 and it's a fun and affordable place to take the kids swimming each season. The kids will love the sandy beach, diving boards and fun slides. The park also features ball diamonds, basketball court, pickleball/tennis courts, an 18 hole disc golf course and a new concert stage.

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Scenic Riverside Drive in Warren

If you love to do 'Sunday drives' and are looking for a new place to take in views of the Salamonie River, you'll have to add this riverside drive in Warren. Head south from Warren on State Road 5 to E. Flowing Well Road. Follow Flowing Well then right turn onto S. Meridian Road. Take a quick jog right on E 900 S to cross the bridge and then left on S. Belleville Road. From there you can follow bike trail signs to head to the City of Huntington. You'll enjoy the quiet country roads and beautiful scenery along the way - it's one of the best routes to take to enjoy the fall leaves.

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The Suspension Bridge and Island Trails - Forks of the Wabash Trail

If you haven't traveled the Forks of the Wabash Trail located just off West Park Drive near the intersection of US 24 and State Road 9, you'll have to make plans to do it soon. The trail winds along the Little and Wabash Rivers to take you to this spectacular pedestrial suspension bridge. The bridge not only offers great views of the river and is a perfect place for photos, but it takes you to an additional half mile of trails on the island.

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Feeding the Carp - Pirates Cove Marina

For well over 30 years, these hungry carp have been making their way to the pier at Pirates Cove Marina. During the summer season, you'll typically find a large school of large carp hanging out waiting for popcorn handouts. Step inside the marina to pick up a bag and let the feeding frenzy begin. This is an especially fun activity for all ages! Photo credit: Pirates Cove Marina

Carp feeding

Upper Wabash Interpretive Services at Salamonie Lake

We are so fortunate to have wonderful nature resources in the area. One such example is the Upper Wabash Interpretive Services at Salamonie Lake. Our office is always steering locals and visitors out to their center to enjoy programming, nature and live fish/amphibian/reptile exhibits, indoor bird watching area and a high quality gift shop. While at the Interpretive Center, take time to explore both the outside live birds of prey exhibits and the butterfly garden that is maintained by the Huntington County Master Gardeners. Visitors of all ages will enjoy this outing. Photo credit: INDNR

Interpretive Center live animals display INDNR

Paddleboarding and Kayaking at Lake Clare

Did you know that you can rent paddleboards and kayaks at Lake Clare? The cost is very reasonable and reservations may be made online. Live4Love Community rents the equipment and also provides instructional courses that you can sign up for online. Sign up for one of their sunset paddles to enjoy paddling with a group and enjoying beautiful sunsets or schedule a couples paddle for a romantic date night.

Paddleboard

LC Nature Park

Bison and elk herds right here in the area? YES, and you MUST GO! Head online to sign up for a tour at the LC Nature Park that is situated just outside of Roanoke on the Allen County/Huntington County border. They offer either a walking tour or a private safari wagon tour. Check their schedule for public hike dates. The staff will accompany you on a tour of the property as you pass through shady forest, restored tallgrass prairie, and an ancient sand dune - and of course you can check out the elk and bison herds. Follow them on social media for programming and special events. Guarantee: this place won't be a hidden gem for long! Photo credit: LC Nature Park

Bison