Indiana Dunes 3-Dune Challenge

  • Lake Michigan
  • 5 mile trail hike
  • Breathtaking views
  • 40 degree slopes
  • Rugged terrain
Indiana Dunes Challenge photo

Indiana Dunes State Park has a 3-Dune Challenge just waiting for adventurous souls to embark on its 1.5-mile trail. Starting at trail 8, at the Nature Center, the winding path will take you through breath-taking views and exhausting inclines. At times you’ll be above the forest canopy and able to see for miles.

The hiking challenge is named for the trio of dunes called The Tremonts. Mt. Jackson, Mt. Holden and Mt. Tom are each nearly 200 feet above lake level. At the summit of each, stunning photo opportunities offer souvenirs of your day to show your friends. In-state park entry fees of $5 per person, and out-of-state fees of $10 per person apply.


The rugged, self-guided, 1.5-mile trail is the most difficult in the park and intended for experienced, physically-fit hikers. Parts of the trail feature nearly 40-degree slopes, making each step demanding. Two steps forward and one step back is routine on the steep, sandy slopes.

Hikers are encouraged to be realistic about ability. If you get tired, take the shortcut back to the starting point. There are plenty of trails to enjoy.

Indiana Dunes Challenge photo - 3

When finished, stop by the Indiana Dunes Visitor Center to reward yourself with a T-shirt or hoodie and grab a free sticker and postcards to share your achievement. You will have earned it!


Regardless of your skill level, consider bringing the following for a more enjoyable hike: Bug Spray, Drinks, Snacks, Camera, Proper footwear, Friends and family.

Indiana Dunes has 15 miles of sandy-beached coastline and more than 70 miles of hiking trails. You’ll also find more than 350 species of birds.

And after exploring Indiana Dunes States Park, shake off the sand with great lodging, dining, shopping and attractions nearby.