I know this is not much of an update, and many will not care, but it does include several fishing areas, so I want to get the word out. After our most recent round of flooding in central Nebraska,
Several state park areas reopen to public use after flooding
LINCOLN, Neb. – Several state recreation areas in the central portion of Nebraska have reopened to the public after closure due to flooding.
Union Pacific, Johnson Lake and Gallagher Canyon state recreation areas are all fully open to public use.
In addition, Medicine Creek SRA has reopened to public use, with the exception of four campsites in the Shady Bay Campground. Sandy Channel SRA is also partially open. The northern half of the park is open to day use only, with limited amenities available. The swim beach is closed because of underwater hazards. The southern portion of Sandy Channel remains closed because the access road sustained major damage.
An up-to-date list of park conditions can be found at OutdoorNebraska.org/weatherclosures.
I stopped by Sandy Channel last week, ironically it was sprinkling while I was there. Water levels were still very high, and the full extent of some of the damage will not be evident until the water drops. However, I can tell you there was a chasm across the entrance road:
Beyond the washed-out road, Sandy Channel is still closed! However, the north side of the area has been re-opened. Water was way up on the boat ramp and covering the angler access structures.
You can see there was some debris moved around and deposited by the high flows and some of that may need to be moved. Once the water drops, I expect most of the angler access improvements will be just fine, but there could still be some unwanted surprises below the surface. We will have to wait and see. Another unknown that will take some time to evaluate is how many and what types of unwanted fish may have invaded during the flooding. Those unwanted species may impact water quality and habitat conditions in the future and may necessitate renovations and re-stocking. We will not know that until we have some time to sample and see what is there.
I also stopped by Union Pacific which you can see in the news release is open again. Impacts looked to be minimal there although I wonder if we might have had some unwanted fish invade there too. Coot Shallows appeared to be unaffected, other than the road being very muddy. I do not know if anyone has been able to get to East Odessa yet.