Spring Mill State Park In Indiana
Description of Spring Mill State Park in Mitchell, Indiana including location, attractions, accomodations, activities and more.
Spring Mill State Park is nestled among the scenic hills of Southern Indiana about an hour's drive south of Bloomington, Indiana. The park is located just outside of Mitchell, Indiana in the southwest part of Lawrence County. Spring Mill was established in 1927 and offers a multitude of recreational activities. This 1300-acre park's features include a cozy stone inn, a memorial to Hoosier astronaut Virgil "Gus" Grissom, a restored Pioneer Village, a working mill, caves, dense woods with hiking trails, and many other recreational activities.
Guests to the park may stay in the Spring Mill Inn that was constructed in the 1930s. Its walls were built from native Indiana limestone found in the nearby quarries of Stonington. Southern Indiana is noted for its cavernous areas that presented problems when constructing the Inn. The building structure has remained virtually the same as when it was built, however, major renovations took place in 1976 when 29 new rooms were added as well as an indoor-outdoor pool and conference room. There are also over 220 camping sites available to travelers with a camp store close by for convenience.
Astronaut Virgil "Gus" Grissom was a native of Mitchell, Indiana and graduated from the high school that is named after him. Spring Mill has a Memorial dedicated to this pioneer in America's space program. Grissom was the second United States astronaut to go into space. He died tragically on January 27, 1967 when a fire started in the Apollo spacecraft during countdown testing at Cape Kennedy. Toxic fumes from the fire suffocated Grissom and fellow astronauts Edward White and Roger Chaffee. All the items in the Memorial are actual mementos or authentic representations of materials that will inform visitors of Grissom's relationship to space exploration.
There is a restored pioneer village with several houses that depict what life was like in Indiana's rich history. Some of the buildings are homes while others represent various shops of the day. There is a pharmacy, an icehouse, and homes that showcase antique furniture that was used during that time period. The old wooden mill is still operational and makes a picturesque scene for family photographs.
Boating is allowed with electric trolling motors only. Guests may also rent paddleboats, canoes, or rowboats. Fishing and ice fishing are permitted as well. There are many hiking trails and caves that outdoor enthusiasts can explore. Donaldson cave can be entered on foot while Twin Cave offers boat ride tours. Saddle barns offer visitors a chance to enjoy horseback riding on designated trails as well. A nature center is located within the park and naturalist services are also available.
Other recreational activities include an outdoor swimming pool near the campground, tennis and other sports. A nature center is located within the park and it offers naturalist services for park guests. There are several picnic areas and a large playground is located near the pioneer village. Picnic shelters are available and can be reserved.