The Indian-Celina Lake Recreation Area is a tranquil getaway in the midst of the Hoosier National Forest. Both the Celina and Indian Lakes are within the area, offering camping, boating, fishing and hiking, as well as tours of a historic site.
Indian and Celina lakes are two of four fishing lakes along Highway 37. The lakes offer many miles of shoreline and coves for fishing for pan fish. Boat ramps are open year-round, and an accessible fishing pier is available on Celina Lake. Anglers can expect a variety of catfish, largemouth bass, bluegill and crappie. The sandstone block, historic Rickenbaugh House was built in 1874 and is open to visitors periodically throughout the year. The home and adjacent historic cemetery are popular among visitors. A variety of hiking trails exist within the area, including the relatively easy, 1 mile Rickenbaugh Interpretive Trail, which is located behind the historic Rickenbaugh House. The Two Lakes Loop National Recreation Trail encircles both Indian and Celina lakes and winds through many acres of natural and peaceful forests. The trail is 16 miles, but can encompass multiple, shorter day hikes.
The area offers dozens of individual campsites, divided in two loops. Campsites are available for tent and RV camping. Utility hookups are available in some of the sites and the parking surfaces are paved.
Each site is equipped with tables and campfire rings with grills. Accessible flush toilets, showers and drinking water are provided. A day-use area is also available, and provides access to the nearby boat ramp. Picnic tables are available there and at the historic site.
The area is located in south-central Indiana, in a dense hardwood and pine forest, on 152-acre Indian and 164-acre Celina lakes. A variety of wildlife make its home in the area.
ADA Access: N
In Hoosier National Forest. Clean, quiet, uncrowded. Friendly manager.
When we stayed here it was like 100 degrees. Our camp host was so sweet and gave us a box fan to use (there is electrical) so that we could have some relief from the heat.
Our camp site was nice and private yet close to a bathroom. The bathroom, even though vaulted, was kept very clean.
The lakes are pretty and we were able to explore with our paddle boards, but I wouldn't necessarily swim there.
We liked this pretty campsite.
We had cellular reception so we were able to work and stream music. :)
There were these cute little lizards that roamed our campground. Didn't expect to see those. They are harmless, and probably eat the mosquitos, so we liked them.
Stayed 4 nights at Indian-Celina on the South loop with some friends (sites 25, 26, and 27) during August 2020. Overall, we had a great time. The sites are pretty spread out and private, the bathrooms are clean, and water spigots are everywhere. The hosts are friendly (there are two, one for the north loop and one for the south loop), and are who you buy wood/parking signs from.
Unfortunately, despite the udsa.gov website mentioning this was a swimmable lake, both the Indian and Celina lakes do not have a beach and cannot be swam in. Thankfully, there's a beach on Tipsaw lake that's about a 10 minute drive away that allows for free day-use if you have an Indian-Celina tag.
Electric hookups are solid and we were able to pull 24 amps consistently from the TT-30 outlets. Cell service on Verizon is very spotty and the general assumption is that it doesn't work. But still good enough to send out an occasional text.
We loved this campground. We were there 3 nights. Most of the sites are rather private from each other. The bathrooms were very clean, even the vault toilets, and had the best TP in them. The hosts were very nice and friendly. They introduced themselves in the first hour we were there and invited us to a couple of free events and made recommendations on the best hikes for what we wanted to see. We would go again, but I think we'd want to enjoy more water activities next time. We'll have to bring a kayak or paddle boards.
Great smaller sites with privacy
Nice quiet and a Great Lake to go fishing.
Two lakes within the recreation area to fish and boat in. During mid August, Celine lake has freshwater Jellyfish that you can catch. Campsites nice!
This was a very quiet campsite in southern Indiana. We had a hard time finding dispered camping in the national Forest so we settled for this site. There was one other site occupied in the middle of the week so it was definitely quiet. Gravel platform for pitching a tent. Clean bathrooms with flush toilets and sinks which were nice.
Each site was spacious and not jammed up against other sites. It is very family oriented with plenty of friendly campers. The restrooms could use a facelift, but were clean and adequate. I camped in the north loop and enjoyed the beautiful forest setting. The campground is just off the highway, but I never heard any road noise. I enjoyed hiking the trail between the North and South loops.
Indian Lake is co-located with Celina Lake and two campground.
Once you turn off of IN37 you just keep straight to get to Indian Lake. Along the long twisty road there are several parking spots to pull off and access the Two Rivers Trail which is a 15 mile loop around both lakes. You can disperse camp for $5 a night at least 300 ft off the trail.
We visited Indian Lake while we were in the area and it is the boatramp, small float dock, parking area and pit toilet only. No picnic tables, no swimming, not much shore line to speak of. The lake looked nice and with the electric motor restriction it was very quiet. Definitely not as busy as Celina Lake while we were there.
Also in the area there is a Citgo for basic supplies and Tell City further south for Wally World and food choices.