Portage Lakefront & Riverwalk Beach

Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk Trail
 

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Getting There

Portage Lakefront Parking Lot

100 Riverwalk Road, Portage, IN 46368

Directions starting from the intersection of U.S. Highway 20 and Indiana State Route 249: Follow State Road 249 north and take the bridge over U.S. Highway 12 towards the U.S. Steel and Precoat Metals businesses. Turn left at the stop sign and cross over Burns Waterway. Once over the waterway, immediately turn right and head north, towards the lake, passing the entrance sign. Park only in public designated parking spots to help protect the fragile dune ecosystem along the roadside.

GPS Coordinates
41.630994, -87.178383 (Decimal Degrees)

Need to Know

  • Hours – Open daily from 6:00 am to 11:00 pm.
  • Free – No entrance or parking fee.
  • Facilities – Year-round restrooms and potable water when the pavilion is open.
  • Pets – Permitted on a leash (6' or shorter) with the exception of inside the pavilion.
  • Prohibited – Glass and fires on the beach, littering.
  • Prohibited – Removing plants, rocks, shells, and fossils.
  • Parking lots are paved and can fill up quickly on summer weekends.
  • 3,500 square foot public pavilion includes restrooms, a seasonal snack bar and a glass walled classroom/meeting space.
  • There are picnic tables at the pavilion.

Safety

  • Please stay on the trail and respect closed area signs. Going off trail damages fragile habitat.
  • Ticks are present year-round. Take precautionary measures to prevent bites.
  • Poison ivy can be present on the edges of the parking lot and trails.
  • In case of an emergency or to report a crime, call 1-800-PARK-TIP.

Accessibility

  • The pavilion, picnic tables, restrooms, and trail are wheelchair accessible. The beach is not wheelchair accessible.

Visitor Activities

  • Swimming. No lifeguards. Swim at your own risk; rip currents and waves can make swimming hazardous.
  • Hike the paved Portage Lakefront & Riverwalk Trail for great views of Lake Michigan.
  • Fishing. Open at all times to those actively engaged in fishing.

Nearby Beaches

History and Background

Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk was opened in October 2008. The redevelopment of the site, formerly used by a steel corporation as settling ponds for industrial byproduct and a sewage treatment facility, is a successful model of brownfield reclamation.The land, buildings, and facilities at the site are owned by the National Park Service and operated in partnership with the City of Portage. To learn more about public programs offered there, contact the Portage Parks and Recreation Department at (219) 762-1675, extension 301.

Boundary Area

Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk area is defined from the Burns Waterway to the eastern edge Ogden Dunes and from a line 300 feet north of the shoreline of Lake Michigan to the south where the park meets private property.

Last updated: September 16, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

1100 North Mineral Springs Road
Porter, IN 46304

Phone:

(219) 395-1882
Indiana Dunes Visitor Center phone number.

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