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Nov 07

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Biological Gems: Indiana Dunes Edition

The Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is home to beautiful beaches—and plenty more, too. Listen up:

Int0034 Cathy Martin

Taking in the biodiverse scenery along the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore. (Cathy Martin/Save the Dunes)

Situated along 15 miles of Lake Michigan’s coastline, going to “the dunes” usually means a day at the beach. But—pack your boots—because the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore’s eco-treasures extend well beyond its sand and waves.

Cathy Martin, parks program coordinator for the nonprofit Save the Dunes, says trails wind through a variety of habitats. “If you were to start at the lake, you would walk through to the beach, a foredune, a forested dune, oak savanna habitats, wetlands, and then woodlands,” she says.

That diversity of habitat is exactly what makes the dunes so special—especially considering oak savannas, which were once common in the Midwest, are rapidly disappearing.

“We have some really high-quality [oak savannas] here left,” comments Martin. “So we like to say we have the best of the last of some things.”

Rare habitat plus various opportunities for fun? Talk about a biological gem.

Get schooled:

The fine print:

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.currentcast.org/location-profiles/biological-gems-indiana-dunes/