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Buffalo Bill Ranch SHP and SRA

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Trail Rides are a new addition to Buffalo Bill Ranch State Historical Park (SHP) and State Recreational Area (SRA) this year.

The rides, provided by Dusty Trails LLC, take visitors through the SRA traveling along the scenic North Platte River. The hour-long rides are a great way to show visitors the beautiful area, some wildlife including deer, turkeys and many bird and plant species.

Jason Tonsfeldt, Superintendent of Buffalo Bill Ranch SHP and SRA is pleased with the amount of people coming to the ranch for the trail rides. “This has been a great partnership – it is bringing people to the area that might not otherwise know all we have to offer here at the ranch,” Tonsfeldt said.

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Buffalo Bill SHP offers tours through the beautifully persevered historical house that Buffalo Bill Cody and his family lived in along with Scouts Rest Ranch and the grounds of the historical park. The historical park is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week. Once you tour the home and barn, visit the resident buffalo family at the ranch then head to the SRA for a great night of camping.

Campers traveling for weekend get-a-ways will want to take advantage of the tucked away campground that is available at the SRA. Many people do not realize that behind the ranch there is a beautiful campground available – it is one of Nebraska’s best kept secrets.

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The recreation area offers beautiful camping along the Platte River. There are 23 camping pads with 50-amp electrical hookups and primitive sites for tent campers. Buffalo Bill State Recreation Area is a convenient stop off of I-80 at the North Platte Interchange. The recreation area offers fishing along the North Platte River, picnic tables, fire rings, hiking trails, bird watching, relaxation and trail rides on the weekends.

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Dusty Barner of Dusty Trails LLC provides the trail rides at the SRA, “We’re very excited to be able to offer trail rides to this area.” “The trail rides are a great addition to the SRA. We are passionate about providing the opportunity for anyone to be able to enjoy and participate in the greater outdoor life that Nebraska has to offer.”

Barner and staff are well equipped to help everyone have a chance to ride, “We offer short rides in the round pen for youngsters that are too young for the hour-long rides, this gives youngsters or others that may not be able to participate on the long ride a chance to relax and enjoy the experience too.”

Dusty Trails gives riding experiences to everyone including the Parnter Up Program giving children with special needs the opportunity to ride. “We have had a great response during this program – it’s great to see the stimulation the kids get from riding a horse,” said Barner. “Watching the kids react to the ride and see how they respond is priceless.”

Hours for the trail rides are Saturday and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. beginning every hour or by appointment during the week. Cost is $15 per rider or $20 per horse per hour by appointment.

Along with the trail rides is a petting zoo for the enjoyment of everyone at the SRA.

Rides will continue until the Historical Park closes for the winter months in mid-October.

Visitors to Buffalo Bill’s Ranch SHP and SRA need a park permit for entry.

For more information about the trail rides or kayaking and tubing from the SRA by Dusty Trails visit their website.

For more information about Buffalo Bill Ranch SHP and SRA see the website and like us on Facebook at Nebraska Southwest Parks.

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About julie geiser

Julie Geiser is a Public Information Officer and NEBRASKAland Regional Editor based out of North Platte, where she was born and still happily resides. Geiser worked for the commission previously for over 10 years as an outdoor education instructor – teaching people of all ages about Nebraska’s outdoor offerings. She also coordinates the Becoming an Outdoors Woman program for Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (NGPC). Geiser went on to work in marketing and writing an outdoor column for the North Platte Telegraph before returning to NGPC in her current position. She loves spending time outdoors with her family and getting others involved in her passions of hunting, fishing, camping, boating, hiking and enjoying Nebraska’s great outdoors.

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