Passing under the Louisville and Indiana Railroad Bridge marks entry into the state park.
Interpretive Center closed until January 2016. Park grounds and fossil beds open normal hours.
By cash, check (with ID), MasterCard & Visa - or free admission with the Indiana Park Pass.
(National Park passes are not valid; this is not a national park.)
Diaper changing stations are in both rest rooms.
You may take photos, record video or audio of anything but the orientation movie. Commercial photography is subject to DNR policy.
Children under 18 should be accompanied by an adult, both within the park and Interpretive Center. Lost children should be brought to the Interpretive Center or to the park security after hours.
No rocks or natural objects can be removed from the park with two exceptions –
1) Driftwood (you must be able to carry it out by hand)
2) Rocks from the ‘Fossil Festival collecting piles’ at the far end of the main parking lot.
If you bring something to the Interpretive Center for identification, it must be returned to where it was picked up. Better yet, take a digital photo and show us a picture!
If you spot an emergency (injury, fire, etc.) and have a cell phone, dial 911. Make sure you tell them you are in Clarksville, Indiana, because the Louisville 911 cell tower is within range of the park.
If you do not have a cell phone, during regular Interpretive Center hours, come to the receptionist or locate a park staffer or volunteer (in uniform or with a name tag) and we will make sure help is called.
Fossil Bed Hiking Tips
1) Enclosed footwear is suggested. There are sharp rocks and broken glass in the gravel & sand river bank and on the fossil beds that can be hazardous to one's toes. Sandals and flip-flops are easily damaged on the rocks.
2) Driftwood may contain rusty nails or barb wire fragments, so watch where you walk and place your hand holds.
3) In the summer, always bring water while you explore the fossil beds. The rock reflects sunlight and it can feel more than 25 degrees warmer than the air at the top of the river bank. The outer fossil beds have little to no shade.
4) To see the fossils better - on the upper beds, use a spray bottle with water. On the lower beds, a large plastic cup and a scrub brush to clean fossils is the best way. (See images at bottom of page.) 5.) A handicap accessibility ramps goes from the gazebo to the upper fossil beds. The irregular nature of the rocks, the low cliff and the regular high water with strong currents make extending it to the lower fossil beds impractical.
Food & Beverages
We do not sell food. We do sell soft drinks and bottled water in the gift shop. There are a variety of both fast food and sit-down restaurants a mile east of the park on Riverside Drive and near the I-65 exit 0 interchange. Food and drink (other than water) is not permitted in the museum.
Our small gift shop features souvenirs, a variety of fossils & minerals, jewelry and a limited selection of books and craft items. We also sell soft drinks and bottled water.
The receptionist at the front desk in the lobby can answer your questions or track down the proper person.
Lost & Found
Check with the receptionist at the front desk in the Interpretive Center.
The parking lot is located behind the Interpretive Center. The Pay-to-Park fee applies to anyone parking in that lot.
1) Dogs on a six foot leash are permitted in the park.
2) Never leave your pet inside your vehicle - especially in the summer when the interior temperature can reach 140 degrees.
3) Please pick up after your pet.
A pay phone is located in the lobby near the auditorium. A receptionist can direct you (look for the phone symbol on the wall).
Located in the Interpretive Center, down a short hallway past the reception desk and gift shop.
Rock & Fossil ID
Bringing your rocks from home for identification:
The park’s geologist usually works Monday – Friday during regular center hours. It is recommended that you call before bringing in something to be identified. We cannot provide a dollar-value for anything brought in, as we are not licensed appraisers.
1) For the health and safety of all visitors, smoking is only permitted outside, and not within eight feet of any door (state law).
2) Please be courteous and do not smoke near other visitors.
3) Place the remains in the proper receptacles after fully extinguished. Stray cigarettes can cause fires in trash cans, driftwood and dried grass.
1) A complementary wheelchair, courtesy of Hanger's Pharmacy, is available upon request. Inquire at the reception desk.
2) Rest rooms are handicap accessible, as are the left front doors (main entrance) and the rear of the auditorium.
3) Closed captioning is also available for the orientation film upon request.
Contact the park if you have any questions.
A previously scrubbed dry, clean coral bed. Splash some water, and watch the fossils stand out!
See Fossil Bed Hiking Tips above.
Created August 23, 2010, Updated October 19, 2015