The Adventure Hiking Trail ride is a challenging back-country experience for skilled riders.
Originally created as a hiking trail, the trail is rough, rugged, and rutted in places, with a number of steep climbs and descents that will require walking. Fallen trees, logs, and loose rock may be encountered at any time, as the trail receives minimal maintenance.
The trail is marked with white and green markers. Some markers can be difficult to locate, especially in places where trees have fallen.
Riders should be prepared for a 5-6 hour ride or more, with spare tubes and tools. Water should be cached at a road crossing along the route, as there is none available along the trail, except at the campground.
This featured ride is written as if done in a clockwise direction. The trail can be ridden in either direction.
Beginning in the campground, near the entrance to the Horseman's Camp loop, follow the gravel access trail a short distance down to the Adventure Hiking Trail intersection on the right.
The trail descends approximately one mile toward the Blue River, crossing the Breeden Ridge Trail
, before dropping into the river valley and crossing the old Iron Bridge Road. (The trail runs through the bottom lands near the Blue River, and the area can be wet or closed during high water events.)
Following the edge of the Blue River for a mile or so, the trail climbs back up the ridges and crosses the Fire Tower Trail
in two locations before descending again toward Fox Hollow, eventually climbing back up the hills for a view of the Blue River, near the trail intersection at Rendezvous Point. Just across the river is the old Stagecoach Campground.
The trail continues across a series of ridges and valleys for about 3 miles and after another descent, the trail climbs once again as it nears IN-462, and crosses that road a short distance from the O'Bannon Woods State Park
After crossing IN-462, the trail winds through a swampy area, and then once again descends through a rocky segment following a dry creek bed, before climbing again. The trail continues to twist and wind, with a number of shorter climbs and descents before a long climb to the Old Forest Road crossing. It's about 2 miles from crossing to crossing.
From Old Forest Road, the trail drops and climbs again, and joins a horse trail for a short segment along a ridge line. The trail breaks off and continues to wind through the woods before reaching the steep limestone bluffs that overlook Indian Creek far below. The trail follows along the edge of the bluff closely, before reaching the Indian Creek Shelter a short distance later.
From the Indian Creek Shelter, the trail descends and climbs a number of times, through rocky creek beds and up short hills, approximately 3.5 miles before reaching the Old Homestead Shelter.
Another series of short climbs is followed by long descent to the Cold Friday Road crossing, about 1.5 miles from the Old Homestead Shelter. The Cold Friday Road crossing is an excellent place to cache supplies, or leave a vehicle in case of an emergency.
From Cold Friday Road, the trail climbs up a steep rocky hillside, and makes a steep descent into a dry creek bed, before climbing steeply once again up a sharp switchback step. Following along the edge of another ridge, the trail descends and climbs once more, before reaching a long, scenic section that runs along the edge of the bluffs overlooking the Ohio River. The trail joins a horse trail for a short distance before reaching the Ohio River Overlook Shelter. It's about 2.8 miles from Cold Friday to the shelter.
From the Overlook Shelter, the trail makes a twisty mile-long descent toward Potato Run Creek and follows along a steep bank overlooking the creek. The trail crosses Potato Run Creek near the Pioneer Shelter and crosses the paved park road, climbing up a steep bank on the opposite side over a series of water bars.
The trail continues to climb the ridge and twists and winds through a series of short descents and climbs before eventually crossing the Breeden Ridge Trail
. After crossing Breeden Ridge, the campground is a short distance away, with the trail joining the gravel access trail the ride began on.