Fall Creek Trail (IN)

Indiana

Fall Creek Trail (IN) Facts

States: Indiana
Counties: Marion
Length: 6.9 miles
Trail end points: George E. Kessler Park and Fort Harrison State Park
Trail surfaces: Asphalt
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 9020366
Trail activities: Bike, Inline Skating, Wheelchair Accessible, Walking, Cross Country Skiing

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Fall Creek Trail (IN) Description

Providing a slice of scenic beauty in an urban setting, the Fall Creek Trail follows the titular creek along a quiet, forested corridor in northern Indianapolis. Offering a variety of recreation opportunities, the trail also connects to the popular Monon Trail, which enables users to extend their trip to the north or the south.

The trail's southwestern end begins just a few blocks south of the renowned Children's Museum of Indianapolis, in George E. Kessler Park. The trail heads north and east along Fall Creek, an important body of water in local history. Crossing over the creek via Central Avenue, the trail continues through a pleasant and shady corridor, providing a tranquil and safe journey that is uninterrupted by any street crossings. The trail heads under a bridge that contains the Monon Trail, accessible via a short path off the main trail, and continues along the creek until it reaches 38th Street. Here, the route crosses the creek again as the trail uses the sidewalk on the street before continuing off-road parallel to the railroad tracks. This section of the trail runs right next to the Indiana Fair Grounds, which operates trains on the adjacent tracks to shuttle people around when the fair is open. From this point until the end , the trail does not cross the road once, providing an unparalleled off-road experience for walkers and bikers alike. Heading through gradually quieter neighborhoods in the northeast suburbs of the city, the trail diverges at the very end to offer access to Skiles Test Nature Park and Fort Harrison State Park, two fantastic natural gems of the area.

Plans are in the work to extend the Fall Creek Trail even further to the north, connecting with an unpaved 1.5 mile loop trail near a dam in the creek. As it stands, however, the existing trail is already a huge asset to the Indianapolis trails system and is well worth checking out.

Parking and Trail Access

Parking is available at the northern trailhead in Skiles Test Nature Park, at a lot off of E Fall Creek Pkwy N and Lakeway Drive, at Fall Creek & 30th Park, and via a dedicated lot at E Fall Creek Pkwy N and N Park Ave.

To reach the southern trailhead from downtown Indianapolis, simply take Meridian Street all the way north until you reach E 25th St - the trail begins on the right in George Kessler Park.

Fall Creek Trail (IN) Reviews

I only give it three stars for a variety of reasons even though portions of the trail are beautiful to ride on. We ride this trail frequently as part of our commute to work in downtown Indianapolis. The north section of trail between Skiles Test Park and 56th Street/Emerson is very nice. It has fairly new asphalt, sits up out of the flood plain, and is wide enough to provide for safe passing of pedestrians. The southern section of the trail from approximately Fall Creek Pkwy and Allisonville Rd to Fall Creek Pkwy and Central Ave is also in good shape but you have to cross the river via the 38th St Bridge (on the busy road or on the pot hole/light pole filled sidewalk). The trail currently dead-ends at Central Avenue due to road and bridge work. The portion of trail between 56th/Emerson and Allisonville/Fall Creek needs a major upgrade. It is narrow, bumpy, curvy, and floods or holds water when it rains. Because it is within the flood plain, silt tends to collect which makes for slick going after a rain event. Once this section is upgraded and they finish the 38th St Bridge crossing it will be a very nice trail to the near northeast side. It will be even better if they ever continue it all the way downtown.

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