Mount Baldy at the National Park Header Item 1

Backpacks for Naturalists

Woman with a Backpack for Naturalists

The Indiana Dunes is one of the most biodiverse parks in the U.S., and the Backpacks for Naturalists program offers free explorer backpacks for daily use. Each backpack contains binoculars, field guides, activity ideas, and other useful items for your adventure.

Visit any of the locations below for a backpack. Just leave your name and contact information.

Find a Backpack at One of These Locations:

Looking for More Outdoor Adventures?


Some things stick with us forever, just like riding a bike. Unforgettable vacation memories spent cruising miles of paved trail, off-road adventures, and rails to trails journeys are just to name a few.


We’ve been described as “for the birds,” and no, that isn’t an insult. The Indiana Dunes is a birders paradise. After all, where else can you see more than 350 native and migratory bird species in one place?


Fishing season? Try fishing seasons. With this many inland lakes, creeks, miles of shoreline, and deep waters, we’re hooked on the sport all year round.


Need a reason to get outside? We’ve got 15,000 of ‘em. That’s 15,000 acres of unspoiled wilderness to walk, climb, and hike through along old-growth forest floors, centuries-old paths, and starkly beautiful wetlands.


Our recipe for the perfect day? Just add water. Luckily, around here there’s no shortage of lakes, creeks, and waterways to satisfy your inner aquaphile. Take it from us, it’s the best way to get to know the area.


Take the time to wander and let your senses take in the sights, sounds, and smells of the Indiana Dunes. Explore gardens, parks, and other natural areas with serene settings.

Explore the Dunes Your Way

Two Men Hiking with Backpacks


Friends of Indiana Dunes Logo

We’re grateful for the opportunity to bring the Backpacks for Naturalists program to you. We’d especially like to thank Friends of Indiana Dunes for their support.

We hope you’ll take advantage of this unique opportunity to explore all the Indiana Dunes area has to offer.