Favorite thing: 'Carga ovata' or Shagbark Hickory is a nut producing tree, most notable for the shaggy bark. The hickory leaf is composed of 5 leaflets with 2-pairs along the stalk and a single leaflet at the end.
'Acer saccharum' or Sugar Maple is a predominant tree in the Beech Maple Forest of the lower Great Lakes. The maple leaf is distinctive in that it is somewhat shaped like an out streatched hand. The Sugar Maple is identified by the 'U' shaped notch/lob between the points.
The Sugar Maple gets it's name from the practice of boiling the spring sap into sugar, or 'Maple Syrup'. The sap can be boiled to a think syrup or to a brown crystal. This practice began hundreds if not thousands of years ago and continue. While New England is best known for it's 'Maple Syrup', the midwest has woodlands of sugar maples that are also tapped and boiled to maple sugar.
The State Park is surrounded by the National Lakeshore and most of the tips listed for Indiana Dunes State Park are actually sites in Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. Confusion rains when it comes to the multiple 'Indiana Dunes' parks and attractions. Check out the Bailly Homestead, Chellburg Farm, Mount Baldy, Central Ave Beach, West Beach, Inland Marsh, Dorothy Buell Memorial Visitor Center, Porter Beach, as well as the State Park. All offer unique activities.
Indiana Dunes State Park
VT Indiana Dunes State Park
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
Fondest memory: 219-926-7561 x 223 or x 225
Porter and Chesterton are the center of the Indiana Dunes, both the National Lakeshore and the State Park. Check out the listing for things to do. Many of which are in these two parks or nearby. You'll find the variety or restaurants is extensive between these two town.
Chamber of Commerce Porter Website
Chesterton is the center of the Dunes, commercially. This small town is now the main commercial district for the State Park and the center of the National Lakeshore. If you're looking for lunch, need a place to stay, it is one area that has it all. Check out the Indiana Boundary section, motels, fast food, fine dining, groceries and all the services you need. A drive downtown opens up more options with local shops and restaurants. Try the new district growing on Indiana 49 at the Toll Road.
Chesterton's town website
Favorite thing: A wonderful time of year to visit is in the Fall. Color change begins at the end of September and usually peaks in mid to late November The colors are vibrant for only a week. Sometime in October, before Halloween, it will rain and knock most of the leaves off. The colors are still wonderful if you're early. Whether there is a mix of greens, or bare spots showing, any combination with the orange, yellows, reds, and golds can be stunning.
Favorite thing: 'Quercus alba' or White Oak is a hard wood. It's used for making barrels, especially for aging whiskey's. It's the acorn tree in many areas.