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Featured National Recreation Trails

A sampling of National Recreation Trails in the news or recently designated. The NRT program showcases the diversity of trails across America, from our cities and suburbs to the deserts, waterways, and high mountains.


National Recreation Trails... America's great trails!

Every kind of trail activity is represented in the listing of designated NRTs. Besides hiking and bicycling, the system includes water trails, motorized routes, snow tracks, greenways, and equestrian paths.

arrowSearch all of Nebraska's designated National Recreation Trails in the Online NRT Database


map of Nebraska

photo of long straight trail

Oak Creek Trail is a success story in acquiring and preserving
an abandoned railroad corridor for recreation and open space

Funk Peterson Wildlife Trail – Situated in Funk Waterfowl Production Area, this 3-mile backcountry loop trail is a bird watcher’s paradise, providing habitat for millions of birds, including endangered whooping cranes and least terns that migrate biannually through the area (designated 2008).


Oak Creek Trail Known as one of the state's most versatile and popular recreational trails, this 13-mile rail-trail serves the communities of Valparaiso and Brainard and provides a picturesque setting for activities including hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding (designated 2007).


Meadowlark Trail Located in Boyer Chute National Wildlife Refuge, this 6-mile rural loop trail system accesses a variety of natural settings, including woodland, restored native prairie, and riparian habitats. The trail currently serves the residents of the Greater Omaha/Council Bluffs Metropolitan area and may eventually link to the nearby community of Ft. Calhoun. In addition to its scenic features, trail users can enjoy recreational activities such as biking, wildlife observation, and cross country skiing (designated 2005).


Niobrara Scenic River, Ft. Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge Section – This 5.6 mile river segment offers visitors a unique scenic recreational floating experience. The river cuts a deep canyon in the limestone rocks that underlie Nebraska’s famed Sand Hills (designated 2009).


Cowboy Recreation and Nature Trail (3 sections) Notable for many reasons including being the Nation's longest rail-to-trail conversion and Nebraska's first State recreational trail. The historic Chicago and Northwestern Railroad right-of-way, now the Cowboy Recreation and Nature Trail, passes through spectacular Nebraska scenery as it travels from Norfolk west through the Elkhorn River Valley. Farmsteads, cropland, and timber-covered riverbanks dot the landscape. Currently 64 miles of this trail are open for public use. When finished this hiking, biking, and equestrian trail will stretch 321 miles across Nebraska, making it the longest rail-to-trail conversion in the Nation. The trail will pass over 221 bridges and through 29 communities.


trail noteWe frequently add NRT information, photos and maps to these pages. Send suggestions and information requests to American Trails. Research additional NRTs in the NRT database.

See how to update online trail information in the National Recreation Trails online database or send changes by e-mail to



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The on-line database has details on the currently designated National Recreation Trails. The NRT Program online is hosted by American Trails:


The NTTP Online Calendar connects you with courses, conferences, and trail-related training


Promote your trail through the National Recreation Trails Program


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