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Tag Archives: outdoor recreation

National Hunting and Fishing Day: A Personal Perspective

National Hunting and Fishing Day is this Saturday, Sept. 25. This is a significant day. No, this is not just another one of those celebratory days, not by a long shot. I grew up fishing, trapping and hunting in rural Nebraska. So this day is deeply personal to me and many others as we are devoted hunters, anglers, trappers and landowners. Your blogger is pheasant hunting the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) grassland acres of a private farming operation in east-central …

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The Fun of Bullfroggin’ in Nebraska Waters

It is a season that is open here in eastern Nebraska. It is an unusual season, but one that just flat out reeks of adventure, challenge and tremendous entertainment value. It is a season tailor-made for kids. And, trust me, this is the season that will create memories and stories like no other! No, it is not a hunting season. IT is Nebraska’s bullfrog season. “Bullfrog season,” you say, “really?” Yep. I know what you’re thinking at this point. Why …

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Foraging for Wild Fruits and Berries in Nebraska

I always get rather impatient this time of year. Is it because of the weather being so hot, humid and hazy? No. Is it that the hunting seasons are just around the bend? No. Then, why? Well, I am a gatherer, a prairie wanderer – if you will, and I am anxiously waiting to harvest elderberries during these dog days of summer. Here I am checking out wild elderberries for ripeness on a Saunders County, NE farm in mid August. …

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A Thorough Guide for Tubing on Nebraska Rivers

Ahhh … Leisurely floating on one of Nebraska’s many scenic rivers or streams in an inflated inner tube is a cool, refreshing, relaxing, way to enjoy a hot summer day with family and friends, isn’t it? A small group of tubers take a rest break on their float trip amid the beautiful scenery of the Calamus River near Burwell in the Nebraska Sandhills. Photo courtesy of NEBRASKAland Magazine/Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. Oh, yeah! Summer river or stream tubing is …

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How to Avoid the Crowds When Going Camping

My neighbors told me the other day that they were heading out on a Friday night to camp at a popular state recreation area in order to “get away from it all” on a nice weekend. Hmmm … I wanted to tell them that most likely, they were heading an area to where it all will be happening with quite a few people there. But how do you steer clear of crowds when you’re trying to plan a summer camping …

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Nebraska’s Smaller State Recreation Areas: The Hidden Gems

From casting a line in a pristine trout stream to a kicking back while camping at a scenic, serene oasis, Nebraska’s state park system, celebrating its 100th anniversary, is an outdoor lover’s dream. There are 76 areas in our park system and they truly offer something for everyone. I know. I have firsthand knowledge of all of them. In my 42 years with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. I have been to EVERY. SINGLE.ONE and even worked in our …

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Extremely Grateful

The season for gratitude and reflection is upon us. Thanksgiving week is when we remind our families, friends and close associates how much they mean to us and express our sincere appreciation for what positive things we have been given in life. While you are considering what you are thankful for, don’t forget nature. During the nine days of the recent firearm deer hunting season here in Cornhusker State, I selected a dozen key elements to be extremely grateful for …

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Go “Nuts” for Nuts in Nebraska

The days are getting shorter. Nature’s color show is just starting to emerge in the west. The forest floor will soon be saturated with early autumn leaf matter as well as something else — nuts! Freshly fallen black walnuts on the forest floor along a creek bottom in southeastern Nebraska woodlands. Photo by Greg Wagner/Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. One of the reasons to take a long walk in the woods during autumn is to gather some delicious, nutritious, wild …

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Be Eco-Friendly, Pick up Your Trash (and that of others)!

Trash. A large amount and variety of trash. Plastic bottles. Plastic grocery bags. Fishing bait containers. Spent fishing line. Cigarette butts. Banana peels. Food wrappers. Diapers. Broken lawn chairs. Old tires. Now, add single-use face coverings and rubber gloves plus empty hand sanitizer containers. Whew! The list of trash items seems endless. So many people are visiting outdoor places and spaces during the current COVID-19 pandemic. In Nebraska, fishing and state park permit sales are up. Float trip outfitters report …

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Go Ape Treetop Journey Course and Monkey Drop open at Mahoney State Park

ASHLAND, Neb. – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission and Go Ape, the nation’s premier Zipline & Adventure Park company, opened two new additions to the already popular Treetop Adventure course at the Eugene T. Mahoney State Park on July 11. The new activities — the Treetop Journey course and Monkey Drop freefall activity, give guests of all ages more opportunities for aerial adventure. It is a welcome addition to the robust amenities already available to families at the state …

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