History | Amenities | State Park Features | Local Attractions | Guest Info


People have always been fascinated by scenes of rugged geologic splendor, places which give witness to awesome powers at work in nature. Clifty Falls State Park, with its deeply cut gorges, sheet rock walls and plunging waterfalls, is such a place. Like the proverbial cowboy who first viewed the Grand Canyon one cannot help think, "Something has happened here!"

Clifty Falls and the nearby Ohio River are products of the Ice Age. The Ohio River is a trench cut by sand and gravel laden melt waters of the glacial ice mass and basically marks the southern most advance of the glaciers which came from the north. Clifty Falls and its canyon are a subsequent erosion feature. From the lip of Clifty Falls at an elevation near the general level of the county, Clifty Creek plunges down more than 70 feet. In nearly three miles of canyon, the creek descends another 250 feet to the Ohio River below. There are four major waterfalls and numerous minor ones in the park.

The 425 million-year-old shales and limestones of the park are among the oldest bedrock exposures in Indiana. They are some 100 million years older than the sandstones and shales of the south central 'Knobs' region and nearly 150 million years older than the coal-bearing deposits of southwestern Indiana. An abundance of fossil remains of ancient marine life are interred in the formation of the rock.

In 1853, the Madison and Indianapolis Railroad Company began work on a railway which was to have run west from Madison then up Clifty Creek Canyon and Dean's Branch to connect with the mail line about one mile north of Madison. Two tunnels were planned for the 4 3/4 mile line. The lower tunnel was barely started and excavation of the upper tunnel which traverses the cliff just south of the Tunnel Falls was in progress when financial problems made it necessary to suspend operations. Portions of the park's hiking trails follow the original grade and several piers and trestle abutments may still be seen.

For many years, the park consisted of 617 acres which included the falls, the canyon and the immediate upland rim. In 1965, the park was more than doubled in size by the acquisition of adjoining upland fields from the Madison State Hospital. This 'old field' area has provided the space needed for modern recreational demands. The city of Madison and the Ohio River Valley make up the panorama seen from Clifty Inn.

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State Park Features

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Local Attractions

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Within 40 minutes from the Inn
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Guest Info

Welcome to YOUR Indiana State Park. We hope you will enjoy your stay with us. Below is some information that you may need during your stay with us. If you have any questions, or need any assistance, please dial “0” from any phone to reach the front desk.

  • NO SMOKING – If you or a member of your party are found to have smoked in a guest/banquet room, a cleaning fee of $250.00 will be assessed, and you hereby agree to pay. By state law, smoking must take place a minimum of eight (8) feet from any doorway or window at the Inn/Lodge.
  • CHECK-OUT IS 11:00 A.M. – If the guest room is still occupied after 11 a.m. a $25 fee will be assessed for the first 30 minutes. After 1 hour you will be charged a full night’s stay at the prevailing rack rate. Any exception to this must be approved prior to the 11 a.m. check-out time.
  • PETS – Pets are only allowed in designated rooms/cabins and are subject to a daily pet fee. If a guest is found to have a pet in a non-pet friendly room, a cleaning fee of $100 will be assessed and you hereby agree to pay. The only exception to the no pet policy is a service animal as defined by the American with Disabilities Act, which must be notified to the Inn prior to check-in.
  • LOST or STOLEN ITEMS – The Inn/Lodge is not responsible for any lost or stolen items. If you require valuables to be secured, please see the front desk associate.
  • QUIET TIME – The Inn/Lodge has a posted quiet time of 10 p.m. to 8 a.m., all guests are required to refrain from disturbing other guests. Violators will be asked to vacate the property.
  • GUEST WIRELESS INTERNET – To access the Inn’s complimentary internet service, open your device’s network manager and select “Inns-Public-Wifi” from the menu. Once connected, your browser should open to the sign in page automatically. If not, simply open your internet browser and go to www.IN.gov and click on “Accept” to accept the terms and conditions.
  • WAKEUP CALLS – Dial “0” to schedule a wake up call.
  • FRONT DESK HOURS – 24 Hours a Day, Dial “0” from any hotel phone.
  • GIFT SHOP HOURS – 24 Hours a Day, pay at front desk if attendant is not on duty.
  • FOOD SERVICE – See dining tab for operational hours and menus.
  • POOL HOURS – 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Outdoor Pools Closed Labor Day to Memorial Day Weekend)

  • Your safety is important to us, please follow the procedures below to ensure a safe stay.

  • RULES & REGULATIONS – Please follow all posted rules and regulations both in the Inn/Lodge and posted in the Park.
  • UPON ARRIVAL – Please refer to the back of your guest room door to locate fire exits and staircases. Please be aware of alarm pull stations and fire extinguishers in your area.
  • LOCK DOORS – For additional security, utilize the lock provided on your door. This will prevent the door from being opened by a regular room key. As an additional precaution, please secure the safety latch.
  • ADMITTANCE – Do not admit persons into your room without first making identification. If there is any doubt about the person’s identity, please contact the front desk.
  • KEY CARDS – Please safeguard your key by keeping it away from magnets and cell phones. Please return key cards to the front desk upon check-out. If you lose a key card, please visit the front desk for new key cards to be issued.
  • IN CASE OF FIRE – Stay calm. If safe to do so, exit the building through the nearest exit. Remember to take your room key card with you. If unable to exit room, moisten a towel and place it at bottom of door to keep out smoke. Dial “0” to notify the front desk or dial”9-911” from guest room phone to contact emergency personnel. Stay low to the ground. Fill the bathtub and/or sink with water with water, use to keep towel moist and to fight fire if needed. If able to open window, place a sheet or light colored cloth from window to signal emergency personnel of your location. DO NOT break the window or jump.
  • IN CASE OF EMERGENCY – Contact the front desk by dialing “0”. If it is a life threating emergency, dial “9-911” from any phone, then contact front desk by dialing “0”.
  • IN CASE OF TORNADO OR SEVERE WEATHER – Proceed to designated safe areas as instructed.

  • Thank You for choosing Indiana State Parks as your home away from home! If there is anything we can do to make your stay more enjoyable while you are here, please let us know.

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