Blue Spruce Park
Indiana, PA 15701
Indiana County established this park in 1966. The dam, known as Cummins Dam, was constructed in 1908 and enlarged in 1912. The park acreage totals 650 acres and features two playgrounds, a volleyball court, horseshoe court, areas for games and sports and a 12-acre lake stocked with trout. In addition, Blue Spruce Park has four pavilions and two lodges available for public rental. The park also contains six miles of hiking and cross-country skiing trails. Located within the park is the Indiana County Master Gardener's Trial Garden where visitors can view the latest floral and plant selections from the Penn State Gardener's Select program. Blue Spruce Park is a premier bird watching spot and portions of the park are open to hunting. Also, noteworthy, an historical marker honoring Bernice Gera, a native of nearby Ernest, PA, is located in the park. Gera was the first female umpire to work in a professional baseball league.
Ghost Town Trail
In 1991 the Kovalchick Salvage Company donated twelve miles of the former Blacklick and Ebensburg Railroad to Indiana County Parks. The railroad corridor has been recycled into a popular rails-to-trails project known as the Ghost Town Trail. In 1993 the Cambria & Indiana Railroad donated an additional four miles of railroad line from Rexis to White Mill Station known as the Rexis Branch. Access points: Saylor Park; Heshbon; Dilltown; Wehrum; Vintondale, Rexis; Red Mill; Twin Rocks; Nanty Glo; and Ebensburg -- In 1991, the Kovalchick Salvage Company donated sixteen miles of the former Blacklick and Ebensburg Railroad to Indiana County Parks. The railroad corridor has been recycled into a popular rails-to-trails project known as the Ghost Town Trail. In 1993, the Cambria & Indiana Railroad donated an additional four miles of railroad line from Rexis to White Mill Station known as the Rexis Branch. In 2005, an additional 20 miles were added to the trail - 12 miles in Indiana County and 8 miles in Cambria County. The trail is designated as a National Recreation Trail by the U.S. Department of the Interior. The Ghost Town Trail derives its name from five mining towns that once existed along the railroad corridor. Wehrum, the largest of the former mining towns, once boasted 230 homes, a hotel, company store, jail and bank. The town was developed by Warren Delano, uncle of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Other ghost towns include Bracken, Armerford, Lackawanna #3, Scott Glen, Webster, Beulah and Claghorn. Eliza Furnace, one of Pennsylvania's best preserved iron furnaces, is located along the trail. This unique relic of the Blacklick Valley's early industrial era is on the National Register of Historic Places. Historical markers along the trail provide interpretive information about the Blacklick Valley's intriguing history.
The 205 acre park, located in northeastern Indiana County in Banks Township, features a 60 acre lake with two boat launches and ares for picnicking, hunting, hiking, fishing and ice fishing. Two pavilions, at the park, are available on a first-come first-serve basis. The lake is stocked with bluegill, bass, catfish, muskellunge, walleye and northern pike. Fishermen may moor their boats at the park following regulations established by the Fish & boat Commission. Only electric motors and hand propelled boats are permitted.
Old Smicksburg Park
Old Smicksburg Park is a 33-acre park located in Smicksburg Borough, in northwestern Indiana County. Since its establishment in 1827, Smicksburg has undergone significant changes. The park provides an opportunity to preserve the history of Smicksburg, interpret life of an early American village and provide an area for outdoor recreation. The park offers hiking trails for walking, birding and wildflower study. It also has picnic tables, portable restroom and a canoe or kayak access to the Little Mahoning Creek.
Todd Bird Club
Indiana, PA 15701
The Todd Bird Club was organized to promote the appreciation and conservation of birds in Indiana, Armstrong, and Jefferson Counties. The club meets the first Tuesday of the month, September through May, at the Lodge at Blue Spruce County Park. The meeting begins at 7:30 and features noted 'birders' who share their experiences through captivating photos and entertaining stories. You are welcome to come earlier to share 'bird' stories and enjoy refreshments. Todd sponsors Tuesday morning outings for weekday birders throughout the year at Yellow Creek State Park. Field trips are also held every Saturday during migration, both spring and fall.We have a great website www.toddbirdclub.org that includes all scheduled events and field trip reports, our newsletters, and lots of other great information. We look forward to meeting you.
Yellow Creek State Park
Penn Run, PA 15765
The 2,981-acre Yellow Creek State Park is in Indiana County along one of the first "highways" in the state, the Kittanning Path. Visitors will enjoy the sand beach, picnicking, fishing, boating, hunting and the educational programs. The 720-acre Yellow Creek Lake is a destination for boaters and anglers. The lake and park are an important rest stop for migrating birds. The park is named for Yellow and Little Yellow creeks, which create the lake. The creeks have lots of yellow clay in the banks and bottoms. The park is also the site of three hiking trails and 20 miles of single track mountain bicycle trails. Seasonal camping is available at one of the parks' 6 cottages or 4 yurts. During the winter months, the park provides ice fishing, sledding, snowmobiling in the 350-acre designated area, ice skating, ice boating, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. In addition, there are several geocaches located in the park.