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Find the top rated atv trails in Nebraska, whether you're looking for an easy short atv trail or a long atv trail, you'll find what you're looking for. Click on a atv trail below to find trail descriptions, trail maps, photos, and reviews.
I have cycled from one end of the trail to the other many times, Beatrice to Marysville and it is just the best trail! There are bathrooms, water and shelters at Holmesville, Blue Springs and Barnston and mileage markers every 1/2 mile. The Chief Standing Bear Trail turns into the Blue River Trail at the NE state line and continues into Marysville.
The Pheasant Ridge Trail is a short 3 mile trail lining the north shore of Harlan County Reservoir in Harlan NE. I had the opportunity to ride it while passing through on the way from our Iowa home to visit family in Arizona. It provided a nice break along the way.
The surface is mostly concrete and it was smooth and relatively fast. It's a little hilly, but the hills are easily manageable and offer some nice vistas of the lake.
If you're coming from out of town, the best place to park is in the city park on the east side of US Highway 183 just to the north of the causeway over the reservoir. Parking is free and the trail starts just steps from the lot.
If you want to go a little longer, you might be able to cruise through the campground at the east end of the trail. There's a guard house there but it was closed for the season when I rode here last week so I was able to easily get in. On the way back, I detoured through town. Round trip was a little under 8 miles.
I wouldn't make a special trip here, but if you find yourself in the area, the Pheasant Ridge Trail is a nice resource and pleasant way to spend a little time exploring this beautiful, rural part of America.
We walked path today. Beautiful day for a walk. His path is not “one mile” as advertised. That’s a little misleading. Loved all the benches for resting if necessary. We will be back! ¿¿
I love the empty beauty of the Sandhills and you feel you're out in the middle of nowhere riding east from Valentine, on a stretch where the trail veers away from the road.
I rode my hybrid 16 miles out and then back (to the big cell tower where the trail rejoins the road). There's been some ATV travel on the trail, but generally the surface was good. I met a cyclist or two close to Valentine, but that was it.
On warm days, take plenty of water - there's little shade to be had.
This trail is a gem. It crosses the Platte River twice on beautiful bridges. There are shelters with seating along the trail. We even saw a couple of deer running beside us. The trail leaves from the Ft. Kearney Campground and the campground hosts lend campers bicycles for free.
As others have said, this nice trail needs some care. A fallen tree partially blocked one spot and branches lay everywhere. Also, the signs say "closed during firearms hunting season" but don't say when that might be, just a number to call.
Overall though, it's a good trail, not too rough and very peaceful and scenic.
I started in Beatrice and rode 10 miles south. The trail surface is packed well and well maintained. The first 2-3 miles were a nice mix of sun and shade, turning into mostly sun up to mile 10. There are a few road crossings, but most were unpaved country lanes, none were busy, and all had good visibility. There was a bench at about 2.75 miles, and a covered area with. Few tables and benches, restrooms, and a water fountain around 6.75 miles. While the scenery is nothing spectacular, it is nice and it's peaceful. Overall, a really pleasant ride
I rode 25 miles out and 25 miles back from Valentine, to Wood Lake. The Niobrara trestle is spectacular and only a couple of miles outside Valentine. The grass was green and the sunflowers in bloom. The people at the motel where I stayed let me park my car. I went in late August after viewing the eclipse over in Wyoming. The weather was hot and humid and very windy (headwind going out). Coming back the wind was lighter, but still a headwind (!) I camped at Wood Lake (pop 60) in the town park (no fee, no one will bother you, rest rooms, picnic tables, shade trees, grass to pitch a tent, electric hookups, excellent drinking water, small playground for kids). The only person I met was the Post Mistress who was helpful and friendly. The cafe is closed, contrary to the trail guide. I was told there is a lady who serves coffee, out by the highway, but the town felt like a ghost town, except for a couple of friendly dogs who came over. I met no one else. Trail conditions were sandy in places and sometimes weedy with washboards where the farmers had used the trail as a road, despite "no motor vehicles" signs. Usually I could avoid the washboards by riding in the center or edge of trail. This is NOT a manicured trail, at least at the western end. I used semi-fat mountain bike tires (26x2.5" Surly Extraterrestrials) with Flat Attack sealer because of thorns and had no trouble with flats or in places where the sand was several inches deep. I rode a few miles on the parallel highway which has good shoulders and is smoothly paved with very light traffic. The places where the trail veers from the highway are the most interesting and scenic; the parts that parallel the highway are a bit boring. I met no other cyclists except within five miles of Valentine. Along the trail I saw two garter snakes, horses, a turtle, a frog, songbirds, ducks, and birds of prey. The Cowboy Trail lacks the social component that more popular trails have. It presents a solitary and perhaps more peaceful experience because there are so few users. One amenity it lacks that more popular trails have are the rest areas with shelters every so often that also serve as gathering places for trail users to meet and swap stories. In between towns there is really no place to get out of the weather and rest or eat a snack unless you sit on the ground. I only explored the western end so perhaps the middle and eastern end have more facilities. The Cowboy is a very long trail and would make a good alternative to highways if you were planning on biking across the whole country.
We started the trail in Peru, NE. The trail hasn't been very well maintained and had branches, ruts, and washout all the way down to Brownville. I didn't mind, but my wife thought it was a harsh ride, so beware. We both rode mountain bikes. This is no trail for skinny tires. I enjoyed it as it had some nice scenery but the end was kinda of anti-climactic, so we just turned around and went back. We will probably do the route from Ne City to Peru and see if the trail is in better shape. Note, if you've ever done wabash trace, this is not maintained nearly as well. We met a couple on recumbents, and wondered how they would fair further down the trail. I've uploaded several pics from the visit.
We rode the trail from Brownville to Peru. There were bluffs, trees, the Missouri River and farm fields. It was an enjoyable ride. There were some washed out spots and rough parts but they were manageable. The Peru trailhead has modern bathrooms that were clean. An overall enjoyable ride. The next day we rode from Nebraska City about 6 miles and back. This part of the trail was in better shape but you do have to ride about 1/2 mile on a gravel road to get to the trail. The trailhead does not have a bathroom or water.
We use to ride this trail a lot, but gave up on it after several rides on it this spring and summer, each time thinking that it was going to be in better condition. I even wrote emails and messaged the Papio-NRD a couple times telling them it was unsafe and way too thick to ride. It's Bad from the start on Hiway50/Schramm Road all the way to Springfield and then past Springfield in places. What was once our favorite is now our least favorite.
My wife and I rode this trail recently while in the area. The trail is in desperate need of maintenance and cleanup. Tree branch debris can be found throughout the Trail. This debris wasn't from a recent storm but had obviously been building up over a long period of time. It was apparent the Trail sees few riders as in some areas the grass had completely overgrown the path. We spent a few hours riding the entire trail without encountering a single rider. Would not recommend till conditions improve.
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