Ray Yellig Memorial Trail In Indiana

Here is everything you need to know about the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail:

  • Trail System: National Recreation Trail
  • State: Indiana
  • Length: 1.2 miles.
  • Type: Hiking
  • Surface: paved
  • Managed By: Santa Claus Parks and Recreation Department
  • Permit Required?: No
  • Website: Info not available.

The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail holds a significant place in the history of Santa Claus, Indiana. Named in honor of Ray Yellig, a beloved figure in the town, the trail serves as a reminder of the area’s rich heritage. Ray Yellig, also known as Santa Claus, was the town’s Santa Claus for over 50 years, spreading joy and holiday spirit to countless children.

The trail itself was established in 2012 as a way to commemorate Ray Yellig’s legacy and contributions to the community. It stretches for approximately 1.2 miles, winding through scenic landscapes and connecting various landmarks in Santa Claus. The trail offers a peaceful and serene environment for walkers, joggers, and cyclists to enjoy the natural beauty of the area.

The history of the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail is deeply intertwined with the history of Santa Claus, Indiana. The town itself was named after the popular Christmas figure, and it has embraced its festive identity ever since. Ray Yellig played a crucial role in shaping the town’s image as the “Christmas Town,” and his dedication to spreading joy and happiness during the holiday season left a lasting impact on the community.

Today, the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail stands as a testament to the town’s history and the enduring spirit of Santa Claus. It serves as a reminder of the man who brought smiles to the faces of countless children and continues to be a cherished destination for locals and visitors alike.

While On The Trail

Access Points

1. Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial: This is the starting point of the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail. It is located in Lincoln City, Indiana, and offers parking facilities and visitor information.

2. Nancy Hanks Lincoln State Historic Site: This site is located along the trail and provides access to the trailhead. It is a historic site dedicated to the mother of Abraham Lincoln and offers parking and interpretive exhibits.

3. Lincoln State Park: This state park is another access point along the trail. It offers parking, camping facilities, and recreational activities such as hiking, fishing, and swimming.

4. Lincoln Amphitheatre: Located within Lincoln State Park, the amphitheater serves as an access point to the trail. It is a venue for live performances and events.

5. Lincoln Pioneer Village & Museum: This historic village and museum is situated along the trail and provides access to the trailhead. It showcases pioneer life and offers parking and educational exhibits.

6. Santa Claus Museum & Village: This attraction is located near the trail and serves as an access point. It features exhibits about the history of Santa Claus, Indiana, and offers parking and visitor information.

7. Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari: This popular amusement park is situated near the trail and provides access to the trailhead. It offers parking, rides, and water attractions.

8. Santa’s Candy Castle: Located near the trail, this candy store and attraction serves as an access point. It offers parking, a variety of candies, and Christmas-themed displays.

9. Santa Claus Post Office: This post office is situated near the trail and provides access to the trailhead. It offers parking and a unique Santa Claus postmark for mail.

10. Santa Claus Christmas Store: This store is located near the trail and serves as an access point. It offers parking and a wide selection of Christmas decorations and gifts.

Transportation Available

1. Uber – On-demand ridesharing service.
2. Lyft – Ride-hailing platform connecting passengers with drivers.
3. Yellow Cab – Traditional taxi service available for transportation needs.
4. Ola Cabs – Ride-hailing service operating in select areas.
5. Lime – Electric scooter and bike rentals for short-distance travel.
6. Bird – Electric scooter rentals for convenient transportation.
7. LimeBike – Bike-sharing service for eco-friendly commuting.
8. Spin – Electric scooter rentals for quick and easy travel.
9. Zipcar – Car-sharing service providing access to vehicles on an hourly or daily basis.
10. Enterprise Rent-A-Car – Car rental service offering a variety of vehicle options.


The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail, located in Santa Claus, Indiana, offers several amenities for visitors. Some of the amenities available at the trail include:

1. Restrooms: There are restroom facilities available for public use along the trail.

2. Parking: The trail provides designated parking areas for visitors to park their vehicles.

3. Camping Sites: The trail offers camping sites for those who wish to stay overnight. These sites may include tent camping areas or RV camping spots.

4. Picnic Areas: There are designated picnic areas along the trail where visitors can enjoy outdoor meals and gatherings.

5. Benches: The trail features benches at various points, providing resting spots for visitors to take a break and enjoy the surroundings.

6. Water Fountains: There may be water fountains available along the trail to keep visitors hydrated.

7. Bike Racks: The trail provides bike racks for cyclists to securely park their bicycles while exploring the area.

8. Information Boards: Information boards may be placed along the trail, providing details about the trail’s history, points of interest, and other relevant information.

9. Trash Receptacles: To maintain cleanliness, the trail offers trash receptacles for visitors to dispose of their waste properly.

10. Signage: The trail is likely to have signage indicating directions, distances, and other important information to guide visitors.

Please note that the availability of these amenities may vary, and it is always recommended to check with the trail management or local authorities for the most up-to-date information.

Nearby Services

1. Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari Campground – Convenient campground located near the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail.
2. Santa’s Lodge – Charming lodge offering lodging and dining options near the trail.
3. Lake Rudolph Campground & RV Resort – Family-friendly campground with various amenities, close to the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail.
4. Lincoln Pines Lakefront Resort – Lakeside resort providing lodging and dining options near the trail.
5. Comfort Inn & Suites – Comfortable hotel offering convenient access to the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail.
6. Wendy’s – Fast-food chain serving burgers, fries, and more, located near the trail.
7. Subway – Popular sandwich shop offering a variety of subs and salads, conveniently situated near the trail.
8. McDonald’s – Well-known fast-food restaurant serving burgers, fries, and more, located close to the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail.
9. Jasper Memorial Hospital – Nearby hospital providing emergency medical services.
10. Huntingburg Urgent Care – Urgent care facility offering medical services for non-life-threatening emergencies near the trail.

Ray Yellig Memorial Trail Difficulty Notes

The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail offers a moderate difficulty level, making it suitable for a wide range of hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. The trail features a well-maintained path with some elevation changes and occasional rocky sections, providing a moderate challenge without being overly strenuous. Hikers can expect to encounter beautiful scenery, including lush forests, scenic overlooks, and the peaceful waters of the Ohio River. While some sections may require a bit of effort, the trail is generally accessible to individuals of varying fitness levels, making it a popular choice for both beginners and experienced hikers looking for a rewarding outdoor adventure.

Features And Attractions

The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail is a scenic trail located in Santa Claus, Indiana. While there may not be many specific landmarks along the trail, the surrounding area offers several attractions and points of interest. Here are some notable places to visit near the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail:

1. Santa Claus Museum & Village: This museum showcases the history of Santa Claus, Indiana, and features exhibits on the town’s namesake. You can also explore the village, which includes Santa’s Candy Castle and Santa’s Workshop.

2. Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari: A popular amusement park known for its roller coasters, water slides, and family-friendly attractions. It offers a variety of themed areas and is a great place for entertainment and fun.

3. Lincoln State Park: Located nearby, this state park is named after Abraham Lincoln, who lived in Indiana as a child. It offers beautiful hiking trails, picnic areas, a lake for fishing and boating, and a nature center.

4. Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial: This historical site commemorates the years Abraham Lincoln spent in Indiana. It includes a visitor center, a museum, and a recreated pioneer farm where you can learn about Lincoln’s early life.

5. Saint Meinrad Archabbey: A Benedictine monastery known for its stunning architecture and peaceful surroundings. Visitors can explore the grounds, attend mass, and visit the gift shop.

6. Monkey Hollow Winery: A local winery that offers wine tastings, tours, and a beautiful outdoor patio. It’s a great place to relax and enjoy the scenic views of the surrounding countryside.

7. Santa’s Stables: If you’re interested in horseback riding, Santa’s Stables offers guided trail rides through the scenic countryside. It’s a unique way to experience the natural beauty of the area.

8. Christmas Lake Golf Course: If you enjoy golfing, this 18-hole championship golf course offers beautiful views and a challenging game. It’s located near the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail and provides a great outdoor activity.

These are just a few of the attractions and landmarks near the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail. Exploring the area will provide you with a mix of scenic views, historical sites, and natural beauty.

Usage Guidelines

– Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times.
– Clean up after your pets and dispose of waste properly.
– Bicycles and skateboards are allowed on the trail, but must yield to pedestrians.
– Motorized vehicles are not permitted on the trail.
– No camping or overnight stays are allowed.
– Fires and open flames are prohibited.
– Hunting or trapping is not allowed.
– Fishing is permitted in designated areas only, following state regulations.
– Swimming or wading in the trail’s water bodies is not allowed.
– Littering is strictly prohibited; please use designated trash receptacles.
– Respect wildlife and do not disturb or feed them.
– Stay on designated trails and do not trespass onto private property.
– Observe seasonal restrictions, such as closures during hunting seasons or extreme weather conditions.
– Follow any additional rules or guidelines posted at trail entrances or along the trail.

Seasonal Information

The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail, located in Santa Claus, Indiana, offers a picturesque and serene experience for outdoor enthusiasts. The best times of the year to visit this trail largely depend on personal preferences and the activities you wish to engage in. However, the spring and fall seasons are particularly popular due to the mild temperatures and vibrant foliage.

In the spring, the trail comes alive with blooming flowers and lush greenery. The weather is usually pleasant, making it an ideal time for hiking, biking, or simply enjoying a leisurely stroll. The trail offers beautiful views of the surrounding landscape, including the nearby Lake Rudolph. Springtime also brings the opportunity to spot various wildlife species, such as birds and deer, as they emerge from their winter habitats.

During the fall, the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail transforms into a breathtaking display of autumn colors. The vibrant hues of red, orange, and yellow create a picturesque backdrop for outdoor activities. Hiking or biking along the trail during this season provides a unique and memorable experience. The crisp air and the sound of leaves crunching underfoot add to the overall charm of the trail.

It is important to note that the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail may have seasonal closures or restrictions. Winter months, particularly December through February, can bring harsh weather conditions, including snow and ice. During this time, the trail may be temporarily closed for safety reasons. It is advisable to check with local authorities or the trail management before planning a visit during the winter months. Additionally, some sections of the trail may undergo periodic maintenance or repairs, leading to temporary closures. Staying updated with any announcements or closures will ensure a smooth and enjoyable visit to the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail.


1. Wheelchair Accessible Trail: The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail is designed to be accessible for individuals using wheelchairs, with smooth surfaces and gradual slopes.
2. Accessible Parking: The trail offers designated parking spaces close to the trailhead, ensuring convenient access for individuals with disabilities.
3. Accessible Restrooms: ADA-compliant restrooms are available near the trail, equipped with features like grab bars and accessible sinks.
4. Trail Signage: Clear and visible signage along the trail provides information, directions, and warnings in accessible formats, including Braille and large print.
5. Rest Areas with Benches: The trail includes rest areas with benches at regular intervals, allowing individuals to take breaks and enjoy the surroundings.
6. Accessible Picnic Areas: Picnic areas along the trail are designed to accommodate individuals with disabilities, featuring accessible tables and seating.
7. Assistance Animals: The trail welcomes service animals, allowing individuals with disabilities to navigate the trail with their trained companions.
8. Accessible Water Fountains: ADA-compliant water fountains are available along the trail, designed to be easily accessible for individuals using wheelchairs.
9. Accessible Trailhead: The trailhead is designed to be accessible, with ramps, curb cuts, and other features to ensure easy entry and exit for individuals with disabilities.
10. Accessible Trail Loops: The trail offers accessible loops or sections, allowing individuals with disabilities to enjoy a portion of the trail that suits their needs and abilities.

Safety Information

When visiting the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail, it is important to keep the following safety information in mind:

1. Stay on designated trails: Stick to the marked paths and avoid venturing off into unmarked areas. Straying from the trail can lead to accidents, getting lost, or disturbing the natural habitat.

2. Dress appropriately: Wear comfortable clothing and sturdy footwear suitable for hiking or walking. Consider the weather conditions and dress in layers to adjust to temperature changes. Protect yourself from the sun by wearing a hat, sunglasses, and applying sunscreen.

3. Carry water and stay hydrated: Bring an adequate supply of water to keep yourself hydrated throughout your visit. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, dizziness, and other health issues.

4. Be aware of wildlife: The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail may be home to various wildlife species. Respect their habitat and observe them from a safe distance. Do not approach or feed any animals you encounter.

5. Use insect repellent: Depending on the season and location, there may be insects such as mosquitoes or ticks. Apply insect repellent to exposed skin and consider wearing long sleeves and pants to minimize exposure.

6. Be cautious of slippery surfaces: Some parts of the trail may be wet, muddy, or have uneven terrain. Take caution while walking to avoid slipping or tripping. Use handrails or walking sticks if available.

7. Carry a first aid kit: It is always a good idea to have a basic first aid kit with you. Include items such as band-aids, antiseptic wipes, pain relievers, and any necessary personal medications.

8. Inform someone about your plans: If you are visiting the trail alone, let a friend or family member know about your plans, including your expected return time. This way, someone will be aware of your whereabouts in case of an emergency.

9. Stay alert and aware of your surroundings: Pay attention to your surroundings and be mindful of any potential hazards. Watch out for roots, rocks, or other obstacles that may cause you to trip or fall.

10. Respect trail rules and regulations: Follow any posted signs, rules, or regulations specific to the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail. These guidelines are in place to ensure the safety of visitors and protect the natural environment.

Remember, safety should always be a priority when enjoying outdoor activities. By following these guidelines, you can have a safe and enjoyable experience while visiting the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail.

Conservation Notes

The Ray Yellig Memorial Trail, located in Santa Claus, Indiana, holds a conservation status that is of great importance. This trail is considered to be a protected area, ensuring the preservation of its natural resources and wildlife. The conservation status of the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail aims to maintain the ecological balance and biodiversity of the region.

Efforts have been made to protect the trail’s surrounding environment, including the implementation of strict regulations and guidelines. These measures are in place to prevent any harm or disturbance to the flora and fauna inhabiting the area. The conservation status of the trail also prohibits any activities that may cause damage to the ecosystem, such as hunting or logging.

Furthermore, the conservation status of the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail promotes the sustainable use of natural resources. This means that any human activities within the trail must be carried out in a manner that minimizes negative impacts on the environment. It encourages visitors to practice responsible tourism, ensuring that they leave no trace and respect the natural surroundings.

Overall, the conservation status of the Ray Yellig Memorial Trail plays a crucial role in safeguarding the natural beauty and ecological integrity of the area. It serves as a reminder of the importance of preserving our natural heritage for future generations to enjoy.

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