The creek valley at Charlestown is one of the oldest unglaciated streams in the state. Even though the stream was this way, melting water from northern glaciers helped shaped the streams deep valley's. The trip down Fourteenmile Creek shows the effects of the Ohio River on it and how it is the same elevation as the Ohio due to dams and locks along the Ohio. When the Ohio rises, Fourteenmile seems to be 'reversing' in its flow due to the water backing up.
The park was used as the Indiana Army Ammunition Plant for 50 years, ending in 1995. The park used to also have a turn of the century amusement park called Rose Island.
Fourteenmile Creek is the main attraction of the park, with elevational changes of over 200 feet. Devonian fossils litter the park and the area is made up heavily of karst sinkholes. The unique topography of the landscape offers rugged hiking options.
Flora and faunaEdit
Birding is very popular in the park featuring observations of species such as: scarlet tanager, osprey, bluebirds, black vultures and bald eagles.
Wildflowers and heavy woodlands fill the area.
Located in Southern Indiana summers are hot and steamy, when winters are moderate. Spring and Fall are pleasant times.
Head east off of I-65 onto SR-62 for eight miles, into the park.
Fees and permitsEdit
Basic gate feesEdit
- Weekdays - $4 (Indiana plates)
- Weekends (F-Su, holidays) - $5 (Indiana plates)
- Non-Indiana residents - $7
- Pedestrians, bikes, by horse - $2
A car gets you in, while hiking is your best bet for travelling the park.
- The trails lead you through beautiful and ancient deciduous forests, bluffs overlooking the creek, and more. Waterfalls, birds, wildflowers and more.
- Hike four different trails ranging from moderate to rugged. Explore the scenic vistas, bluffs, cliffs, waterfalls and Fourteenmile Creek. Eight miles worth!
- Fish for bass, bluegill, catfish and other gamefish in the Creek.
- Visit the nature center to learn about the area and during the summer rangers host naturalist tours.
- Enjoy a picnic on grassy greenspace or shelters with toilets and playgrounds.
Pack your goods ahead of time, there isn't a park store.
There are no restaurants in Charlestown.
Water is available from pumps throughout the park.
Louisville is the nearest major city, offering plenty of lodging arrangements.
- The park offers an onsite campground with toilets, hot water and showers. All sites are electric!
- Use common sense.
- Firearms aren't allowed in the park.
- Keep your pets on leashes.
- Build fires in permitted areas only.
- Carry in/carry out all of your goods.
- Drive the speed limit
- Don't drink water unless it's from park pumps.
- Don't swim, the creek might look inviting but it isn't safe.
- Call 911 or park ranger offices if any problems.