Nike Missle Site
A rusting remnant of the Cold War. Nike Missle sites like these were strategically places in rings around major US cities and industrial sights, in defense against a Soviet air attack. This particular one, classified C-47, guarded Chicago and the Indiana steel mills. Empty since 1974, there was some talk about preserving it as an historical site.
Located south of Portage, in the unincorporated community of Wheeler, C-47 is fenced in with many prominent "No Tresspassing" signs. I believe the state owns the land. Didn't get much of a look, but it appears most of the buildings still stand.
West Beach is the only beach in the National Lakeshore and only 1 of three public bathhouses along the shoreline of Indiana.
The beach area includes inter-dunal pans and sand dunes. These are fragile, so please stay on trails and do not cross fences.
There are dunes that you can climbe, right by the bathhouse.
There are also several trails in the area including the Dunes Succession Trail Loop (0.9 m - 1.4 km); the West Beach Trail Loop (1.4 m - 2.2 km), and the Long Lake Trail Loop (1.6 m - 2.6 km). Each has something different to off. And there is always the beach to walk along.
While Chicago is over 40 miles away, around - or - across the lake -->
parts of urban America are a bit closer