Best Hiking in Nebraska

Trying to find the best hiking in Nebraska? Bivy has great hiking, biking, paddling, climbing, skiing, riding and more, with hand-curated trail maps, as well as detailed driving directions.


Nebraska, Buffalo County

06 :17 hrs
9.2 mi
32.634155 ft

This route is a combination of multiple paved trails such as Pioneer's Path, Betty's, Tailrace, and The Links trails. It beings from Cottonmill Park and travels several miles to the Great Platte River Road Archway Monument, which stretches across Interstate 80 and features a visitors center commemorating the early pioneers on their trek west. The trail mostly follows along side a canal but does pass by several sand pit lakes and near or under busy streets. There is space for parking at the starting location and Archway Monument with several options of shortening the trip along the way if one has a shuttle option.


Nebraska, Keya Paha County

00 :16 hrs
0.4 mi
4.374939 ft

The Smith Falls Trail will lead hikers right up to the base of Nebraska's 70 foot waterfall, making it the tallest in the state. The partly dirt and boardwalk path allows easy access to the landmark with minimum elevation or effort. Note that a state park permit is required for entry.


Missouri, Atchison County

01 :41 hrs
4.2 mi
106.92703 ft

The Indian Cave Trail takes users to a cave exhibiting 1500 year old petroglyphs. Located in a mountainous area of Nebraska, this reverse lollipop trek made up of grass and dirt provides challenges like steep climbs, muddy terrain, and tricky descents (route back to trailhead is more challenging). Permits are required for entry, along with a day fee - contact Indian Cave State Park for more information. There is a shuttle option if one has two vehicles, or, after reaching the cave, one can simply travel back to the trailhead on a park road instead of reversing back on the trail.


Nebraska, Dawes County

07 :53 hrs
8.7 mi
126.98523 ft

Located within Nebraska National Forest, Pine Ridge is a mountainous area that has experienced massive fire destruction in past years. Still, it is an area with plentiful views of the wilderness landscape. One will be sure to have an outdoor experience by traveling within and atop small canyons. The start of this journey begins at a primitive campground: Roberts Trailhead. One will need to travel along many country roads to reach this destination; offering seclusion. Roberts Trail itself can be quite faded and difficult to follow at times due to horse and weather-wear, so be attentive to signs and follow the dirt path carefully. More suited for hiking, biking is also an option. It is mapped to be an out and back adventure, but there is a shuttle option if one has two vehicles. One could also make a loop back to the campground by following the country roads once reached.


Nebraska, Cass County

01 :02 hrs
1.5 mi
8.714447 ft

The Platte River Connection Trail is the linking piece of trail-way leading from the city of Lincoln to Omaha. It stretches across the great Platte River, providing some great views. What was once a bridge for a railroad, is now a bridge for pedestrians. Currently and mostly unpaved, this path provides a pleasant outing for those on a tight schedule. Parking is available on both the starting and ending locations. There is a shuttle option if one has two vehicles.


Nebraska, Dawson County

00 :40 hrs
2 mi
2.6531372 ft

Located within the small town of Gothenburg, Lake Helen is currently emptied of water due to rehabilitation purposes. Once filled again, sometime during 2015, the lake will once again be open to fishing. At this point, users of the area can still recreate along the paved trail that winds around the perimeter of the lake and park boundaries - suitable for all skill levels. It is a multi-use trail, so be courteous of others.


Iowa, Monona County

01 :17 hrs
3.3 mi
57.56595 ft

Hikers and cross-country skiers share the path. Watch out for ticks and poison ivy. There is camping available. No fees or permits, except for camping or cabin rental. It is recommended that this be an overnight hike.


South Dakota, North Sioux City

01 :59 hrs
6 mi
4.821533 ft

Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve covers 1500 acres along the Missouri River and offers a network of trails that explore an area of diverse natural terrain. The River Loop follows a gravel trail on the south side of Mud Lake that travels through both prairie and forest terrain down to the Missouri River. The trail has lots of small ups and downs but no major hills making it a good choice for hikers of all skill levels. The trail continues to the north up past the lake making it easy to customize a much longer hike if desired.


Iowa, Council Bluffs

02 :49 hrs
4.2 mi
1.445343 ft

An easy walk or ride, the path is paved. With great views of the lake, you can enjoy Birdwatching and wildlife. This trail connects to the Missouri River’s trail for those looking for a bigger challenge. Because it is paved, this path is handicap accessible. During spring enjoy the wildflowers and during fall enjoy the change of colors.


Nebraska, Lincoln

00 :47 hrs
2.3 mi
7.28183 ft

An inner-city lake located within Lincoln, Nebraska has been transformed into a public recreation area. The trail that encircles the lake is partly paved and fairly level. One will pass over a few bridges and experience great lakeside views. Other activities in the vicinity include boating, fishing, and picnicking. There is also a neighboring golf course. Note that the trail at times can experience high volumes of traffic, so be courteous of others.

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