News from the Indiana Geological and Water Survey
December 2020

Happy Holidays from the IGWS

The administration and staff of the Indiana Geological and Water Survey wish you a happy holiday season. Indiana’s natural sites have been a source of inspiration and escape during difficult times. Although families and friends may not be able to gather for celebrations this year, we hope that you find comfort in our state’s enduring geologic heritage, and wish for better times in the New Year.

Frozen seeps along Trail 3 at Turkey Run State Park in Parke County, Indiana. Click on the photo to go to the IGWS State Park Guides webpage. (Photograph by HK Photography.)

New Topographic Trail Map

The topographic trail map of Morgan-Monroe and Yellowwood State Forests is now available for $15. This folding two-sided trail map is printed on waterproof, tear-resistant paper; it covers the forested hills of Morgan-Monroe and Yellowwood State Forests, Lake Lemon, and other smaller nature preserves, parks, and conservation lands.

The underlying geology in this region includes the bedrock unit known as the Borden Group, which forms the steep hills and narrow valleys that will test even the most seasoned outdoor enthusiast. The northern portion of this area includes the flood plain of the White River, an area of massive glacial outwash during the last Ice Age that is covered with meander scars and abandoned channels from ancient and modern-day floods.

This area is also home to the 42-mile Tecumseh Trail; it begins in Morgan-Monroe State Forest and travels south through Yellowwood State Forest to the Hoosier National Forest boundary. This map covers the northern 22 miles of the trail from the Morgan-Monroe ranger station to Lanam Ridge Road.

See the special sales offers below to purchase all five of our Topographic Trail Maps for a reduced price.


Special Sale Bundles

Do you have someone on your gift list who is a geology buff or an outdoor enthusiast? We're offering some special sale bundles to make your holiday gift-giving easier. Order soon for on-time delivery.

Rock Star Special Offer Gift Pack

Hike the New Year Special Offer

Deluxe Hike the New Year Special Offer

Five Geology Posters for Reduced Price

Limestone Lovers Gift Pack

Science Whiz Sticker Set Gift Pack

All that Glitters Gift Pack

Silver and Gold Gift Pack

Rock Star Gift Pack

History of the Indiana Geological and Water Survey

A short history of the IGWS was recently published in the Indiana Journal of Earth Sciences. The early years of the Survey’s history (1837–1986) is taken, almost verbatim, from an article written by John B. Patton (Director and State Geologist from 1959–86). Information from later years is from various sources: the Hester years from a piece by John R. Hill (IGS Geologist and Assistant Director from 1970 to 2007) and the Steinmetz years from the reminiscences of John C. Steinmetz (Director, 1998–2015). It also includes various facts taken from Landmarks in Indiana Geology—A Timeline, an online visual history by Henry H. Gray.


In the early 1950s, several offices of the Indiana Geological Survey were housed in Quonset huts on the Indiana University campus.