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Fremont – Choose from 20 man-made lakes on 300 acres at Fremont Lakes State Recreation Area, three miles west


of town. The area is open year-round, with all services available Memorial Day through Labor Day. Activities include birding, fishing, swimming, boating, camping and picnicking. The area has 200 electrical camping sites, 600 without electricity, and modern showers and toilets. Picnic areas, drinking water and trailer dump stations are available. Anglers will find bluegill, bullhead, carp, channel catfish, crappie and largemouth bass. Lakes 7 and 8 also have muskie. Gas-powered boating is allowed only on Victory Lake and Lake 20. All others allow only electric trolling motors. The area has three swimming beaches and a lake specially redesigned for personal watercraft. (402) 727-3290.


Genoa – Five wildlife areas and a recreation area nearby. Six miles west of town on Hwy 22, Headworks Park is a 10-acre recreation


area with electrical hookups for campers, picnic areas equipped with picnic tables, grills and fresh drinking water, fishing in small lakes and in the Loup Canal, and an all-terrain vehicle riding area. Council Creek Wildlife Management Area has 160 acres with deer, dove, pheasant, quail, rabbit, squirrel and turkey. It is 6 1/2 miles west and one mile south of town. With 485 acres, Loup Lands Wildlife Management Area is along the Loup River near the Loup power canal headgates. It is three miles southwest of town. Wildlife includes deer, dove, pheasant, quail, rabbit, squirrel, turkey and waterfowl. The use of rifles or handguns is prohibited. A mile south of town on Hwy 39, Prairie Wolf Wildlife Management Area has 972 acres, mostly bottomlands along the Loup, with some grasslands and marshes. Wildlife includes deer, dove, pheasant, quail, rabbit, turkey and waterfowl. Sunny Hollow Wildlife Management Area is 160 acres of mostly grassy uplands, with some wetlands. Wildlife includes dove, pheasant, rabbit and waterfowl. It is three miles south, then one mile west, then one mile south of Genoa. George Syas Wildlife Management Area fronts about a mile and a half of the Loup River. About half of its 917 acres is wooded; the other half is prairie, crops and planted shrubs. Wildlife includes deer, dove, pheasant, quail, rabbit, squirrel and turkey. It is two miles south-southeast of Genoa on Hwy 39, then 1 1/2 miles east, then 1 mile north.


Homer – Basswood Ridge Wildlife Management Area is a 360-acre area of rugged and heavily-wooded bluffs overlooking the


Missouri River Valley. Wildlife includes deer, rabbit, squirrel and turkey. Target shooting is prohibited. The area is two miles northwest of town on a county road (follow the sign from Hwy 77). Two miles north and 2 1/2 miles east of town, Omadi Bend Wildlife Management Area is 33 acres of bottomland forest by an oxbow lake. Wildlife includes pheasant, quail and waterfowl.


Macy – Big Elk Park and Hole in the Rock Recreation Area, (402) 837-5391.


Maskell – Mulberry Bend Wildlife Management Area is a six-acre waterfowl area that is one mile east of Maskell on


Hwy 12, then 2 1/2 miles north.


Monroe – A mile south of Monroe along the Loup River, the 67- acre Looking Glass Creek Wildlife Management Area has two small lakes and is about half wooded, half prairie. Wildlife includes doves, rabbit and squirrel. The use of rifles or handguns is prohibited. About a half-mile north of town, the Loup River Canal is a popular fishing location.


Neligh – Five miles west of town on a county road, Red Wing Wildlife Management Area has 320 acres along the Elkhorn


River. It is mostly wooded, with some prairies and marshes. Wildlife includes deer, dove, pheasant, quail, rabbit, squirrel and waterfowl.


Newcastle – Mulberry Bend Overlook is part of the Missouri National Recreational River, both a unit of the National Park


Camping at area lakes


System and the National Wild and Scenic River Systems. The overlook, by the Newcastle-Vermillion Bridge on Hwy 15, offers a spectacular view of the Missouri River. Handicapped accessible for a good portion, the paved walk to various lookouts is moderately strenuous, but well worth it. Interpretive panels tell local stories. Two miles west and two miles south of town on a county road, Buckskin Hills Wildlife Management Area has 340 acres of prairie and woods, with a 75-acre lake. Wildlife includes pheasant, quail, rabbit and waterfowl. The lake has bluegill, channel catfish, largemouth bass and walleye. Motorboats are limited to 5 mph. Primitive camping is allowed.


Niobrara – Niobrara State Park is at the junction of the Niobrara and Missouri Rivers, a mile west of town on Hwy 12. With


1,234 acres, it has more than 12 miles of hiking trails and a two-mile hike-bike trail that follows an old railroad grade and which crosses the Niobrara on a vintage iron truss bridge. Camping facilities include 69 camping pads with electrical hookups, 50 non-pad sites without electricity, and 19 cabins on high bluffs overlooking the river. Cabins are open mid-April through Dec. 31. Grounds are open year-round for day use and primitive camping. Drinking water, modern restrooms and showers, dump station, picnic tables and grills are also available. The park offers guided horseback rides, playground equipment and a swimming pool, and hosts bison stew cookouts on Saturday evenings Memorial Day through Labor Day. A great way to see the river is by signing up for the park’s Upper Missouri River Float Trip, offered mid-May through September. A guide will take you through the river’s braided channels in an inflatable workboat dubbed “The Little Pearl,” in honor of a ferry that used to operate here. This is part of the Missouri National Recreational River, a portion of the Missouri that has not been dredged and straightened for barge traffic, and which still resembles the wild river that Native Americans and explorers like Lewis and Clark would have known. Contact the park for reservations. Though anglers go out on the river from three boat access areas, excellent catfishing can be had on the handicap-accessible fishing bridge that spans the Niobrara along the hike-bike trail. Archery deer hunting is allowed during the last half of deer season; a special free permit is required. Wildlife viewing in the park is excellent. In addition to a large population of white-tailed deer, wild turkeys roam the hills, and beaver, muskrat and mink live along the riverbanks. Woodland birds include the following; whip-poor-wills, bald eagles and ospreys, with all present part of the year. Nebraska’s largest and oldest controlled shooting area for pheasants is Swanson Hunting Acres, 2,300 acres of crop and rangeland. Hunts include lodging, food, birds, dogs and dog handlers. It is open Sept. 1-March 31. 89054 519 Road. (402) 857-3514 or (402) 857-3794. Nearby, Bazile Creek Wildlife Management Area has 4,500 acres of mostly wetlands, with some mixed woods and grasslands. Often known as “Nebraska’s Everglades,” the high water table is a result of Gavins Point Dam downstream. Wildlife includes deer, dove, pheasant, quail, rabbit, squirrel, turkey and waterfowl. The area is two miles east of town on Hwy 12.


30 • Discover Northeast Nebraska


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