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Using Parks and Open Space While Maintaining Physical Distance

Safe use of parks and open spaces during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Bloomington Parks and Recreation believes that Griffy Lake Nature Preserve can continue to be used in a safe manner that allows people to enjoy the mental and physical health benefits this space provides. We request that our visitors follow local, state and national ordinances and guidelines regarding the use of Griffy Lake.

  1. Observe CDC’s minimum recommended physical distancing of 6 feet from other individuals at all times. If this is not possible, users should find an alternate location or depart that space.
  2. Refrain from using parks or trails if they are exhibiting symptoms.
  3. Follow CDC’s guidance on personal hygiene prior to and during use of parks or trails.
  4. Prepare for limited access to public restrooms or water fountains.
  5. While on trails, warn other users of their presence and as they pass, and step aside to let others pass.
  6. Follow CDC guidance on the recommended size of social gatherings including outdoor picnicking, pick-up sports and other group hangouts, and maintain proper physical distance at all times.

Camping

Camping, ground fires, and overnight parking are not permitted at Griffy Lake.

Dogs

Griffy Lake Nature Preserve is a protected area. Please protect the highly erosive soils at Griffy Lake, and prevent injuries to your dog, wildlife, and other people by keeping your dog on a leash at all times. Ferguson Dog Park, an off-leash dog park managed by the Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department, is located nearby. Learn more about the Ferguson Dog Park.

Fishing

Griffy Lake was drained to facilitate repairs to the dam and spillway in 2011-12. Largemouth bass, redear sunfish, bluegill and channel catfish were reintroduced to Griffy Lake in spring 2014. All Department of Natural Resources rules and regulations regarding the taking of fish, including size limits and daily bag limits, are in effect at Griffy Lake. Learn more about Indiana Fishing Regulations here.

Adults are required to have a valid Indiana fishing license to fish at Griffy Lake. Fishing licenses are NOT available for purchase at Griffy Lake.

Geocaching

For more information about geocaching at Griffy Lake, contact the Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department at (812) 349-3700 or parks@bloomington.in.gov.

Parking

A large gravel parking lot (approx. 65 spaces) is located at the boathouse on Headley Road. Additional parking is available at the dam on North Dunn Street. For the safety of Griffy Lake users and motorists, parking along Headley Road and Dunn Street is not permitted.

Restrooms

Restrooms at Griffy Lake are closed for the season.

Picnic Area

Picnic tables are located around the boathouse. Grills are not provided. Grilling is permitted, but ground fires are prohibited. Separate trash and recycling receptacles are located around the boathouse.

Hiking

There are several hiking trails, ranging in difficulty from easy to rugged, at Griffy Lake Nature Preserve. Please respect the fragile environment of Griffy Lake Nature Preserve by remaining on marked trails. Dogs and other pets must remain on a leash at all times while in the park. Mountain biking, horseback riding, and off-road vehicles are strictly prohibited.

Use the link at the bottom of this page to view and download the Griffy Lake trail map.

  • Nature Trail (.4 mile) - This self-guided trail begins across the parking lot from the restroom. It is an easy loop trail with moderate slopes.
  • Hiking Trail (1.6 miles) - This trail starts and ends iwth steep slopes; however, most of the trail is on a relatively flat ridgetop. Views along the trail include valleys, upland forest, and occasional glimpses of the lake. The trail starts across the road from the boathouse and ends at the east end of the boathouse parking lot.
  • Griffy Creek Trail (1.5 miles) - This non-looping trail begins at the east end of the boathouse parking lot and follows the north branch of Griffy Creek. Views along the walk include the creek and forested valley.
  • Lanam Trail (1.1 miles) - This linear trail begins at the Griffy Creek Trail trailhead and extends to Lanam Road. The trail provides views of the forest, and parallels sections of the north and middle forks of Griffy Creek.
  • Cascades Park Trail - This paved, accessible, linear trail connects Lower Cascades Park to the intersection of Stone Mill Road and North Old State Road 37.
  • Wetland Trail (.5 mile) - The Wetland Trail is an easy, non-looping trail, but it is seasonally wet. Please respect the fragile nature of this area by staying on the trail. The Wetland Trail begins at the Griffy Creek trailhead.
  • North Shore Trail (1.5 miles) - This trail begins along North Headley Road, north of the boathouse. Please use care when walking on the road to reach the trailhead. Steep slopes, narrow pathways, and rock outcrops make the North Shore Trail the most Rugged trail at Griffy Lake. Please stay on the trail when hiking in the area.
  • North Shore Loop Spur (1 mile) - This looping trail begins and ends at Griffy Lake dam. At the top of the dam the trail splits off to the left from the main North Shore Trail. Sections of the trail explore upland forest habitat before dipping down into a creek bottom to rejoin the North Shore Trail.
  • South Shore Trails (3.7 miles) - A collection of trails explore Griffy Lake's state dedicated nature preserve area. A couple of the trails connect to the IU Research and Teaching Preserve trail system.

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