Nebraska Lakes

The Nebraska landscape might surprise some people; it's so much more than cornfields. From the dramatic bluffs of the Missouri River in Omaha and wide stretches of sand hills in the central part of the state to the scenic views of the Oregon Trail in Western Nebraska, variety is the name of the name of the game. The landscape also includes a variety of Nebraska lakes, primed for fun in any season.

Johnson Lake Nebraska is a favorite place for outdoor recreation; it's located in the south-central portion of the state, not far from Interstate 80. The lake, with nearly 30 miles of shoreline, is an draw no matter what the weather. But when the temperature heats up and people flock to lakes in Nebraska, Johnson Lake is a popular place for hanging out on the beach and more active pursuits on the water. The region is also known for its golfing opportunities; many types of courses are found within a 50-mile radius.

The largest of all of the Nebraska Lakes, Lake McConaughy has more than 100 miles of shoreline dotted with white-sand beaches and an excess of 35,000 acres of fresh water. Nicknamed Big Mac, Lake McConaughy Nebraska is located just northwest of Ogallala. When visitors come to Lake McConaughy State Recreation Area, they'll find a long list of fun things to do on land and on the water. Fishing is a primary draw, and Big Mac is known for its walleye and white bass. Other visitors who’ve made the trip to Lake McConaughy Nebraska enjoy boating, wind surfing, scuba diving, strolling the beach, and camping.

Lake Ogallala just below Kingsley Dam and off the big lake, also provides recreational options in the Lake McConaughy region. Anglers appreciate the chance to catch rainbow trout and yellow perch. When winds are too big on the big lake, this smaller lake is the perfect setting for watersports. In the winter, people flock to the bald eagle observation center to watch visitors of the feathered variety.

As Lake McConaughy Nebraska demonstrates, several of the lakes in Nebraska are part of state recreation areas. The Nebraska Game & Parks Commission oversees a variety of State Recreation Area state parks all over the state, in addition to state parks and historical sites. These locations offer a wide range of amenities, everything from modern conveniences to quiet places to get back to nature. The commission also takes camping reservations and provides fishing licenses.

The second biggest of all of Nebraska lakes is found along the border with South Dakota. Lewis and Clark State Recreation Area, north of Crofton, takes its name from the explorers who camped nearby. Modern-day visitors can enjoy boating along Lewis and Clark Lake, in addition to hunting, hiking, biking, and other activities on land. Several new camping sites have been added for RVs, and new cabins have popped up along the shores of the lake.

A chain of lakes in Nebraska was created when Interstate 80 was constructed. Now a favorite of anglers, these lakes are stocked with bass, bluegills, and trout. North Platte I-80 Lake, operated by the city, is known for its excellent crappie fishing, its scenic hiking trail, and the fishing pier. Just a few miles from Grand Island, Mormon Island State Recreation Area is home to three separate lakes and camping sites, just minutes from the interstate.

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