Calumet Dunes Paved Trail
0.5 miles, 32 feet of elevation gain, 2% average grade, 5% maximum grade
Hike time: 20 minutes
This featured hike is a loop trail and is wheelchair accessible. Starting at the parking lot trailhead, hike the trail loop in a counter-clockwise direction. The path is easy to follow. Please be aware of trail junctions. Stick to the left at each junction. The first two junctions are the north and south entrances to the Glenwood Dunes Trail system. Note that no pets are allowed on this portion of the Glenwood Dunes Trail. The last trail junction is with the Dunewood Trace Campground Trail. Again, stay left. The trail ends on the opposite side of the building from where you started. Walk around the front of the building.
History and Background
The building at the parking lot has an interesting history. The ground breaking ceremony for the building took place in 1959 and opened on November 13, 1960 as the Presbyterian Church of the Dunes [An interesting side note is that the church had owned and held services in the Old North Church building in Beverly Shores (from the 1933 Chicago World's Fair) from 1938 until 1960]. The last service in the building was held on August 30, 1970 and the National Park Service purchased the land and building shortly afterwards. The building became the park's headquarters and visitor center in 1971. The headquarters moved out of the building to the abondoned Nike missle base on Mineral Springs Road in 1977. The visitor center stayed in the building until November 15, 2006, when the current Indiana Dunes Visitor Center on State Road 49 was opened. The building is currently serving as the United States Geological Survey's (USGS) Lake Michigan Ecological Research Station.