Hardin Ridge Recreation Area

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Hardin Ridge Camper

Hardin Ridge Recreation Area is located on Monroe Lake south of Bloomington, Indiana. This recreation area offers​ six campground loops, two picnic areas and three shelterhouses,​ two of which are available for reservation, a three​ lane boat launch, a swim beach with shelter and showerhouse,​ hiking trails, and two rental cabins on the lake. The​ campground loops offer modern restroom and shower​ facilities. This area is operated by a concessionaire under a​ special use permit issued by the Forest Service from mid-​April through mid to late October.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Beach closed
Operational Hours: Open for hiking and other activities year-round. 
  • Campsites available beginning April 15 until October 15. 
  • Campground quiet hours are from 10:00 pm to 6:00 am 
Reservations: Camping and Shelters
  • Reservations for cabins, picnic shelters, and some campsites sites may be made online or by calling 1-877-444-6777. 
  • Some sites are only non-reservabe and only available as first come, first served. 
  • A three day reservation window is required. All sites, cabins, and shelters may be available as a walkup site if not reserved within that time period. 
  • Cabins can be reserved from May 15 until September 15.  They are available first come, first served at the gate from April 15 to May 14, and September 16 to October 15.
Fees Day Use Fees
  • Required from 4/15 - 10/31. 
  • $5/day for each vehicle 
  • Buses are $5 for the driver plus $1/person  (no passes accepted)
  • Annual passes available
  • Discounts available for access, senior, and military pass holders. 
Camping Fees
  • Walk-to and primitive sites - $21/night
  • Electric sites - $28/night
  • Electric and water sites - $31/night
  • Double sites with electric - $44/night
  • Cabin rentals - $55 per night
  • Campsites are allowed one vehicle. $5/ night for extra vehicles
  • Discounts are available to access and senior pass holders for single sites only.
Shelter Rental 
  • $40/day from April 15 until October 15
  • Day use fee applies to each additional vehicle
Permit Info: Trail Permits
  • Hoosier National Forest trail permits are NOT required to ride bikes on the 2-mile long Hardin Ridge trail that runs parallel to the main campground road.
Fishing and Boating
  • Indiana state fishing permits are required for fishing. 
  • Indiana launch permit required for launching boats on Lake Monroe. 
  • Boaters are required to follow Indiana state boat operating and registration requirements.
Usage: Heavy
Restrictions: Beach Rules
  • No glass containers allowed on the beach
  • No pets allowed on the beach
Firewood Restrictions 
  • Any firewood brought onto National Forest System land must meet ONE of the firewood requirements on Hoosier National Forest.
  • Use of on-site firewood must only be from dead, downed material. Standing trees, living or dead, may not be cut or defaced.
NO HUNTING IS ALLOWED IN THE RECREATION AREA. A complete list of rules and regulations are posted on bulletin boards in the campground and are provided upon check-in at the recreation area. 
Closest Towns: Bloomington, IN
Water: Centralized drinking water is available throughout the recreation area and at some campsites.
Restroom: Modern facilities and vault toilets available in day use and campground areas. Cabins are vault only
Passes: Day-Use and Annual Passes
  • Day-use or annual passes are required April 15 through October 31 and are available at the gatehouse, or instructions provided if gatehouse is not staffed.
  • Day-use and annual passes may be used at Hardin Ridge, Indian-Celina, and Tipsaw Lake Recreation Areas. 
  • Day-use and annual passes do not cover separate camping fees.
Interagency Passes
Operated By: FIND Outdoors

General Information

  • From Ind. 446 south of Bloomington, turn on Chapel Hill​ Road. Proceed to the entrance on the right.​
  • From Ind. 37 south of Bloomington, turn east on​ Guthrie Road. Turn right on Chapel Hill Rd and proceed​ to the entrance on the left.


6464 Hardin Ridge Road
Heltonville, IN  47436.

General Notes:

Additional Resources

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Beaches & Dunes

Show detail SHOW


Show detail SHOW

Camping & Cabins

Show detail SHOW


Show detail SHOW


Show detail SHOW

Nature Viewing

Show detail SHOW

Outdoor Learning

Show detail SHOW


Show detail SHOW

Water Activities

Show detail SHOW