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Rules & Regulations

Rules & Regulations

State Park Rule Highlights

Visitors shall observe the following rules, which are designed to fulfill the purpose for which state parks were established, namely, to preserve a primitive landscape in its natural condition for the public’s use and enjoyment.

  • Do not injure or damage any structure, rock, tree, flower, bird or wild animal. Do NOT gather limbs, brush or trees (either dead or alive) for firewood because they rebuild the natural humus.
  • Any firearm (except validly licensed handguns) BB gun, air gun, CO2 gun, bow and arrow, or spear gun in possession in a state park must be unloaded or un-nocked and stored in a case or locked within a vehicle, except when the owner is participating in an activity authorized by written permit.
  • Dogs and cats must be attended at all times and kept on a leash no longer than six feet. More pet rules.
  • Vending or advertising without permission of the Department of Natural Resources is prohibited.
  • Camping is permitted only in the campground. Youth groups must be under adult supervision.
  • Please comply with the Carry In/Carry Out trash policy in all day-use areas. Overnight guests must put waste in receptacles provided for that purpose.
  • Motorists shall observe posted speed limits, and park only in designated areas.
  • Swimming is limited to places and times set by the DNR.
  • Drinking water should be taken only from pumps, hydrants or fountains provided for that purpose. This water is tested regularly for purity.
  • Report lost or found articles to the park office.
  • All motorized vehicles shall remain on paved roadway. Snowmobiles are prohibited.
  • Bicycles must be used only on roadways and are not allowed on hiking trails.


Alcohol is strictly forbidden at Indiana Dunes State Park and in all youth camps and at all beaches. Daily visitors and campers at all DNR properties are asked to be responsible when consuming alcohol. Possession of alcohol by persons under the age of 21 is against the law in Indiana; and this will be enforced.


  • Lifeguards are on duty at all swimming pools.
  • Depending on lifeguard availability, many swimming pools reduce hours of operation in the early and late parts of the season. Contact the property directly for specific hours of operation.
  • A Swim at Your Own Risk policy is in effect at all beaches except at Indiana Dunes State Park.
  • Swimming pools and the beaches may close toward the end of the summer season when lifeguards are unavailable.
  • Pool hours may vary by property.
  • For any up-to-the minute changes, contact the property you plan to visit. Property phone numbers can be found in the Indiana Recreation Guide.
  • For pool operations, all infants, toddlers or small children who are not "potty trained" shall be required to wear an elasticized swim diaper before entering the pool area.
  • Fecal incidents may result in closure of the pool. These closures can last from several hours to 24 hours.
  • For children age 12 and under to enter a beach or pool area they must be supervised by someone age 16 or older.

Use of DNR Property by Private Organizations

A special events permit/license is a required by 312 IAC 8-2-15 if an individual, business or other group wishes to host an event such as a public meeting, parade, contest, competition, sporting activity or other special event or activity on a DNR property. The application can be obtained by contacting the property manager at the proposed event location. It must be completed and submitted for review at least 30 days prior to the event, and approved prior to any publicity for the event. An fee of $25 is required, and additional fees may apply depending on the nature of the event.

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