Indiana Dunes State Park Interpretive Services will be offering a special hiking tour Aug. 1 on one of the United States’ “51 greatest hikes,” as picked by USA Today’s Travel section.

This two-hour hike leaves the nature center at 9:30 a.m. and will explore the forested dunes, open grasslands and two park parabolic blowout dunes.

Last month, USA Today named the top 51 hikes, recommended by local experts. Each state had a hike represented for its best scenic or awe-inspiring trek. Indiana Dunes State Park was chosen as Indiana’s best hike.

Trail 9, through the Dunes Nature Preserve, allows visitors to, “enter black oak and maple forest and find dramatic dune country blowouts amid shifting sand hills,” says the article.

The full article is at http://travel.usatoday.com/destinations/story/2011/06/51-scenic-hikes/48780180/1.

Hikers should plan for weather conditions and bring a water bottle. The hike is free after the standard gate fee of $5 for Indiana vehicles and $10 for out-of-state vehicles.

For more information, call the Indiana Dunes State Park Nature Center (219) 926-1390.

Media contact: Brad Bumgardner, Interpretive Naturalist, (219) 926-1390.

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