“beautiful stone and log structures”
Natural lakes created by glaciers that melted 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, highlight Steuben County, which has more lakes than any other Indiana county. The park is framed by Lake James and Snow Lake, which offer abundant opportunities for boating, swimming, fishing and scenic sunsets. Pokagon is also Indiana State Parks’ winter wonderland, with cross-country ski rental, sledding, ice fishing and a twin-track toboggan run... “What a thrill!”… That's what you'll say once you've experienced the quarter-mile, refrigerated toboggan run at speeds of 35-40 mph. The toboggan run operates weekends from the Friday after Thanksgiving through February, with extended hours during the Christmas holidays. Pokagon State Park is located near Angola, just off I-69. The park was originally called Lake James State Park when proposed to be the fifth Indiana State Park in 1925. The name was changed to Pokagon State Park to acknowledge the rich Native American heritage of the state and region. Leopold and Simon Pokagon were father and son and the last two most notable leaders of the Potawatomi. The park’s Potawatomi Inn takes its name from these Native Americans, who made their home in the area. The inn, with its up-north fishing-lodge theme, is one of the Midwest’s most popular resorts and conference centers. Being one of the state’s original parks, Pokagon features the unique work of the Civilian Conservation Corps, whose members lived and worked at Pokagon from 1934 to 1942. The “boys of the CCC” built the beautiful stone and log structures that dot the park landscape and provide accent to the rolling wooded hills, wetlands and open meadows.
The winter highlight here is, of course, the toboggan run. Face your fears and flex your muscles. The toboggan run at Pokagon State Park is not for the weak bodied or weak minded. Tobogganers reach speeds of up to 40mph screaming down iced steel chutes. Super fun! Then, you must carry your 50 lb sled the 1/4 mile back - all uphill. A nice fire pit midway up is good for warming cold toes, and then you get to do it all again.
Cross country skis are available for rent at a truly inspirational lodge built in the 1930s by the CCC, where we also made s'mores in the gigantic fireplace. A nice Nature Center features live native critters and tons of taxidermy, and was filled with charming old-school exhibits on the history of Indiana and the park itself. A ranger-led nature hike out onto the frozen lake taught us about identifying animal tracks and Indiana's glacial history.
We had such a great time, we made a pact to make this an annual winter getaway. And maybe even slip in a weekend in the summer!
Beautiful ! We were just passing through Angola but it was a nice place to stop for the night ! Only thing I didn't like was they still charge you the park entrance fee on top of the camping spot. I think it should be included but that's just me
Very clean & well maintained. We really enjoyed our visit!
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Pokagon State Park
- Sun - Sat: 7:00 am - 11:00 pm
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