Monday, July 4, 2016

A summer of gems!

We found another “gem” in the forest.  Tipsaw Lake Recreation Area is part of the Hoosier National Forest in southern Indiana.

Two things were really interesting about our stay at Tipsaw Lake.  One, we could not find out the name of the town the campground is located in.  County, yes; town, no.  We had to use GPS coordinates.  And two, we were right on the line of Central Time Zone and Eastern Time Zone. Apparently, Indiana observes both depending on which county you are in.  We would bop back and forth between the two when we were out exploring.  

We had reserved sites in the Catbrier Loop as it was one of the smaller loops and was geared more towards big rigs.  We are tucked in the woods, it’s very much our type of preferred campground, and we ended up extending our stay 2 additional nights.

We quickly found out that southern Indiana is HOT, HOT, HOT.  We did our best to stay cool though.

The camp hosts had told us about a neat hike we would like.  It is called Hemlock Cliffs and is part of the National Forest.  It is about 30 minutes from the campground and was in a canyon so the temps would be cooler.   We set off one morning to check it out.
Hitting the trail

Beautiful rock formations

It's a long way down

This reminded me of coral

and a close-up

Who knew that rocks could be so interesting?

Trees can grow in the most unique places....
and so can ferns!!

So many neat caves
We saw some mighty TALL hemlocks

Taking a break

It was quite evident that people liked to slide down into the canyon

Taking time to enjoy all of God's creations
This rock reminded us of a UFO! 

Who knew this was Indiana?
We got to the part of the trail that had a “lollipop loop”.  Dan, Syl and I decided to check it out.
Dan scouting it out...

It looked do-able!

Ok - now I wasn't so sure!  To Dan's left is the "cliff" part of the trail.

Oh my!!
At this point, I figured I had seen all I needed to and was getting ready to turn around.  My fear of heights was getting the best of me.  But, both Dan and Syl encouraged me to continue on. Ahhh….peer pressure!  So I did.  And, I was so glad that I did.  It was absolutely breathtaking.
Syl enjoying a moment 

One last look
Gin had left us a few clues as to where she was on the trail and we quickly found her.  The temps were climbing and we were ready to finish the hike.  But, not before we saw this scary creature.
Oh no - it's attacking Dan!

Dan fighting the monster!
Doesn’t this look like some type of creature (we called it an alligator), with his mouth open and eyeball up top?

The weekend warriors (family campers) were out in full force when we got back to the campground. We spent the rest of the day Friday watching them as our entertainment.  We laughed ourselves silly. Saturday we spent hunkered down at our sites playing cards (learned a new card game!) and relaxing. Sunday was chore day and Monday we were supposed to explore Spring Mill State Park and West Baden Hotel (gangster hangout in the early 1900s) but the weather did not cooperate.  Looks like we will have to come back to the area to explore those areas!




  1. What fun seeing the four of you out on that beautiful trail. The rocks, caves and creatures were really amazing. Who knew Indiana had so much to offer??

    Safe Travel and Keep Having Fun....

  2. Yes I just love those rock formations. It was indeed cooler at the cliffs. Kids on bikes can be very entertaining.

  3. What amazing scenery. Glad you overcame your fear of heights so you could enjoy everything. Enjoying our visitors a great deal but it is hot, hot, hot here also & the humidity is scorching. The K of C will be building a ramp out front so it will be easier for Dad to get out. Sciatica was a "bitch" yesterday but okay so far today. PT at 3:15 today.

  4. The scenery is amazing! I wish Bruce and I were there with you guys exploring these cool spots. Love the flower! Miss you two!