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Indiana Designates Two New State Forests

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Indiana has two new state forests not too far from Bloomington. It’s the first time Indiana has designated a state forest in 67 years. 

The 1,500 acres of hills and restored cropland — known as Ravinia Woods — will be split off from the Morgan-Monroe State Forest to form Ravinia State Forest. The other state forest, called Mountain Tea, is 1,100 acres of land in Brown County.

Gov. Eric Holcomb said it may be even more important for Hoosiers to get into nature during this pandemic.

“To get out and maybe temporarily get — get lost in the woods, lost of your troubles, and reorient yourself," he said.

John Seifert directs the Indiana Department of Natural Resources’ forestry division. He said you’re not going to see a lot of electric and water hookups at these sites.

“People are going to come to state forests to be very primitive, to be by themselves, to really commune with nature," Seifert said.

The DNR hopes designating these areas as separate state forests will give them more statewide attention.

Contact reporter Rebecca at rthiele@iu.edu or follow her on Twitter at @beckythiele.

Indiana Environmental reporting is supported by the Environmental Resilience Institute, an Indiana University Grand Challenge project developing Indiana-specific projections and informed responses to problems of environmental change.