Language Translation
  Close Menu

Clifty Falls State Park

  • Clifty Falls State Park Alerts (1)
    • Brough’s Tunnel Closed: Due to an early spring rockslide and the possibility of additional large rocks falling near the entrance, the tunnel is closed for an indefinite period of time. The park is evaluating how to mitigate any future rockslides, with the intention of opening the tunnel in the future. Trail 5 remains open, but please avoid both tunnel entrances.
Mailing Address:
1501 Green Road
Madison, IN 47250

Mapping Address:
2221 Clifty Drive
Madison, IN 47250

Clifty Inn
  • Description

    This property is a stop on the

    Birding Trail Logo

    Learn more at

    Clifty Falls State Park is located near Madison with entrances on state roads 56 and 62. The park’s waterfalls change moods with the weather and the seasons and can range from roaring plunges to delicate bridal-veil mists to gleaming frozen titans. Winter and spring visits reveal them at their best. The rugged splendor of Clifty Canyon offers exciting year-round hiking and scenery.

    Clifty Creek’s stony bed is littered with fossil remnants telling of a long-vanished marine ecosystem that teemed with life that included ancient corals, ancestral squids, brachiopods, and more. Fossil collecting within Clifty Falls State Park is prohibited but nearby collecting locations are readily accessible.

    In Historic Madison, tour the Lanier State Historic Site, the former mansion of frontier banker James F.D. Lanier, and enjoy the drive along the beautiful Ohio River. Plan a park visit during one of the community's special events, such as the July Regatta hydroplane boat race or the Madison Chautauqua Festival of Art in late September.

    Please note: Brough’s Tunnel is closed for an indefinite period of time due to an early spring rockslide and the possibility of more large rocks falling near the entrance. The park is evaluating how to mitigate any future rockslides, with the intention of opening the tunnel in the future. Guests can enjoy the many other features of Clifty Falls State Park while creating memorable experiences safely.

    During the summer, pool hours may change because of weather and staffing. Please contact the property office for exact times before your visit.

  • Activities

    Camping - See campground maps under MAPS tab

    • Electric / 106 sites
    • Non-electric / 63 sites
    • Youth Tent Areas
    • Dumping Station


  • Trails

    Note: For trail locations, view the property map under the MAPS tab.

    The Friends of Clifty Falls State Park and Jefferson County Library partnered to create a StoryWalk® on the paved walking loop that begins at the trailhead of Trail 7 near Clifty Shelter. This trail is easy and wheelchair accessible. Read a book while going for a short, easy walk! After completing the StoryWalk® you are welcome to pick up a sticker at the nature center.

    1.*RUGGED (.75 mile)—Starts at nature center parking lot, proceeds to Observation Tower overlooking Ohio River, then along canyon wall to park road. Long, steep grades in and out of canyon.

    2. VERY RUGGED (3 miles)—One-way, no-outlet in North End. Continual water damage and rockslides have required the removal of this structure for everyone’s safety; therefore, access in and out of the canyon is available only via connecting trails 1, 4, 5, and 8. Trail 2 is primarily the stone bed of Clifty Creek and may be impassable during times of high water. Areas above and below all waterfalls are always OFF LIMITS.

    3.*RUGGED (1 mile)—Starts at park road just south of Poplar Grove. Long grade descends to midcanyon, then follows along canyon. Steep grades rise to Poplar Grove. Easy walking to near side of Beech Grove connecting with Trail 4.

    4.*RUGGED (.75 mile)—Starts at Hoffman Falls parking lot. Short distance to spectacular falls overlook. Follows canyon to Lilly Memorial (spur connects to Clifty Creek), which has a long, steep staircase at Lilly Memorial.

    5.*RUGGED (.875 mile)—Starts at Lilly Memorial, long, steep staircase to mid-canyon. Follows along canyon past tunnel entrances (spur connects to Clifty Creek), past Oak Grove to Tunnel Falls. Steep staircase from falls overlook to road.

    6. MODERATELY RUGGED (.5 mile)—Starts at Hickory Grove, follows canyon just below rim to Lookout Point. Some very rocky footing.

    7. MODERATELY RUGGED (1.25 miles)—Starts at Clifty shelter, proceeds past Little Clifty Falls along rocky footing to Lookout Point. Returns to picnic area east of shelter via upper Little Clifty Creek gorge.

    8. RUGGED (4.5 miles)—Starts just west of north gatehouse. Proceeds south along west rim of Clifty Canyon. Steep grades to Clifty Creek at north and south ends of trail. (Steep switchback connects to creek across from Oak Grove.) Exits south canyon to park road or Trail 1 to nature center.

    9. MODERATE (1 mile)—Campground to nature center and Clifty Inn, via swimming pool.

    10.EASY (.75 mile)—Starts at back of swimming pool parking lot, features old field ecology.

    *Brough’s Folly 1852 railroad path

  • Maps
  • Photos & Video


Clifty Falls State Park Events

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat

  Loading events

 Upcoming Events

More Events

 Top FAQs