Posey County’s southern borders were naturally formed by the confluence of the Wabash and Ohio rivers. The waters of those two great Midwest rivers helped make the land fertile and carved out Indiana’s distinctive borders.
Mount Vernon River Front
Mount Vernon has always been a river town. Going down to the waterfront and watching the boats go by in the evening has long been a popular pastime for its citizens.
Riverbend Park’s centerpiece is its amphitheater, which hosts civic events, an annual arts festival, concerts, movies, weddings, and the annual Fourth of July fireworks display, among other happenings throughout the year.
Riverbend is also something of small scale botanic garden, featuring beautiful landscaping, walkways, benches and a short trail. And there’s a splash fountain for children to frolic in during the summer months.
The Wabash River
The Wabash River is one of the two great rivers that give Posey County its unique position in the world. The Wabash starts at Grand Lake in western Ohio and flows 475 miles to the Point in Posey County, where it merges with the Ohio.
Today, the Wabash is used almost exclusively for recreational boating, fishing, and sightseeing. New Harmony, Harmonie State Park, the Old Dam, and Dogtown Ferry Public Fishing Area and Boat Ramp are publicly accessible spots to catch a sunset, cast a line, or just enjoy watching the river flow.
The lake’s distinguishing feature is its vast number of cypress, and other trees, that are partially submerged in the water.
The lake is part of the Hovey Lake Fish and Wildlife Area, which includes several other properties as well and is devoted to maintaining wildlife in Posey County for residents and visitors alike.
The Point, where the Wabash River meets the Ohio, is a remarkable place, and most often the first thing people notice when they look at a map of Indiana.
Throughout Posey County, it’s easy to see how water impacted this place and how it’s greatly responsible for the area’s success: from being chosen as a prime settlement location nearly two thousand years ago, to its lasting role as a center for trade. For migrating birds, wildlife viewing, hunting and fishing, site-seeing, paddling and sunsets, the presence of water and its importance in Posey County can’t be overstated.
Twin Swamps Nature Preserve
Twin Swamps Nature Preserve is probably the best place to experience the Point’s unique ecosystem. Its wetlands and sloughs demonstrate its up-north, deep-south character and the old growth forests are a lonely remnant of the environmentally rich, low lying communities that once thrived over large portions of the Ohio and Wabash River valleys.
A long, winding loop trail passes through 597 acres of river bottom flat woods and several representative ecosystems, including the two swamps, which are not really twins. One is a Cypress swamp, the other an Overcup Oak swamp. Overcup Oak is rarely found outside the immediate area.
The highlight of the trail is a boardwalk that extends over 300 feet into the Cypress swamp and culminates at an elevated viewing tower. It is a place of incredible natural beauty. Red-tipped Cypress knees emerge from shallow black water that reflects the majestic old Cypress and Cottonwood trees that tower over the swamp.