In the south west corner of Marion county (Indianapolis) is a remote feeling park not far from the hussle and bustle of city life, named Southwestway Park. At only 487 and a half acres, it’s not nearly as large as the more well known Eagle creek Park. (Located half an hour to the north.) Yet this little “forest” still manages to house some equally beautiful hikes along secluded winding trails.
I actually grew up not far from this park. Maybe ten minutes away. But until recently, had no clue Southwestway was a municipal park with trails. Despite having drove past it hundreds of times… The front takes up very little road frontage. And what can be seen from the street is full of softball diamonds. Growing up I simply assumed it was just home to a local softball league. Never learning differently until I started looking for places to hike.
But better late than never… and I am extremely grateful that I am still here, to have the opportunity to hike places like Southwestway Park. I give thanks daily for my donor Ja’Lynn, the talents of my medical team, and for the Lord gracing me with a little extra time. I truly hope sharing my little adventures post-transplant helps those still waiting for their miracle. Maybe helping me earn this gift in some small way.
Now, I can not speak to trails circling the norther end of the park. But the southern trails I took… Would be difficult to enjoy pre-transplant. Especially If you’re on higher supplemental oxygen or need the aid of a wheelchair, walker, rollator, O2 cart, et cetera. It was winding and hilly, with the occasional patches of thick roots along the path. Things that would have quickly left me breathless pre-transplant.
However; if you’re not yet on supplemental oxygen, are still steady on your feet, and aren’t yet slowed down by hills… or if you are post transplant. Then I would highly recommend Southwestway park. I went in the morning, but not terribly early. And though I saw several people in the parking lot. Once I was hiking, I didn’t cross paths with a single person. The park feels as if it were much farther away from civilization than it actually is. And the trails crisscross quite a bit. Making it easy to adjust the length of your hike. It’s not worthy of detouring a trip to see. It doesn’t compare to a state or national park in that regard. But there were parts just as pretty… And if you live in the Indy area it is worth a visit.
Southwestway Park 8400 South Mann Road, Indianapolis, IN 46241
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