Clark County is not known for its bustling cities or densely populated metropolis’.
For many who call the county home they enjoy that lifestyle, which is what makes the Clark County Forest a perfect destination.
“We’ve got a wide variety of users from ATV’s, snowmobiles in the winter. Horseback riders, mountain bikers, cross-country skiers. Fat tire bike and hikers as well,” said Clark County Forest Parks and Programs Manager Marcus Aumann.
Established in 1934, the county forest covers more than 130,000 acres.
“The county forest covers about 20 percent of Clark County. Clark County residents spend a lot of time in the forest, hiking, hunting. Again hunting is very popular in the county forest,” said Clark County Forestry and Parks Administrator Rick Dailey.
Scattered throughout the forest are different parks and pavilions, such as Levis Mound which has become more popular.
“From a recreation side we’ve seen growth at this place,” says Aumann. “Mountain biking is really one of those activities that has increased in the past couple of year and our camping facilities have also increased significantly too as well. We see a lot of visitors come in for camping.”
Dailey says his department is one of the main attractions in the county.
“We also have a lot of visitors that come long distances to enjoy our facilities. The forest is a big generator of tourism dollars in Clark County,” he said.
At Levis Mound, the trails and pavilion are bringing in people from across the Midwest and beyond.
“It gets a lot of traffic, it’s quite popular not only in the Midwest but it’s seen as a national visit site too as well for those looking for a destination to come and ride,” said Aumann.
The Clark County Forest is a great place for a weekend family getaway any time of the year.
“Clark County is truly an all season county. At the county forest right now there are a lot of turkey hunters out there. Soon the camping season will begin, boating. The beaches will be open,” said Dailey.
With hundreds of thousands of acres that can be covered, there are also plenty of hidden gems to be found throughout the forest.
“There isn’t a lot of elevation to be found in Clark County. It’s very much a glacial area. We do have a couple of great locations, (Levis Mound) being one of them and then Bruce Mound Winter Sports area as well. That’s our ski and snowboard hill and winter tube area that’s right down the road. Two great spots that people don’t necessarily think that they can get great views,” said Aumann.
In addition to all the recreational opportunities available at forest, the department also provides a large amount of forest products, such as timber, to the community.