Land and Water Trails

Whether you're into motorsports or horses, nature trails or tubing down the Rupublican River, you'll find a trailhead just for you in Harlan County.

Harlan County Lake

Harlan County Lake has over 13,000 surface acres of water and nearly 75 miles of shoreline, making it Nebraska's second-largest lake.


upcoming events

Eagle viewing at the lake Dec. 1, 2015 to Feb. 20, 2016 more
Harlan White Pelican Watch and Homecoming Celebration Mar. 1 to Apr. 15, 2016 more
Polar Plunge Mar. 19, 2016 more
view all events

Harlan White Pelican Watch 2016

March 1 - April 15, 2016  -  View the American White Pelican Spring Migration
at the Harlan County Reservoir in south-central Nebraska

Pelican Homecoming Celebration Special Events:

Spring Kick-off Event: Polar Plunge - Patterson Harbor Marina - South side of the lake; March 19; 308-799-4600. (If the pelicans can get in that icy water, so can we…maybe!)

Paradise on the Prairie Art and Photography Show and Silent Auction – March 25-April 1 (closed Mar. 27, Easter); Alma Johnson Center, 509 Main St; artist and public reception April 1, 5-6 p.m.; auction closes 6 p.m. April 1. Sponsored by the Harlan County Arts Council. Free admission. Also student art show on display, sponsored by the Harlan County Journal, using recycled newspapers to create art.

Four Days of Poetic Nights – Alma Johnson Center, 7:30 p.m. daily, Mar. 29-Apr. 1, all events free:

March 29: Nebraska State Poet Twyla Hansen presents “For the Love of Words: Poetry, Prose and the Creative Writing Process”, a workshop for would-be writers. Students and adults welcome.

March 30: Don Welch, winner of the Pablo Neruda Prize for Poetry and retired Reynolds Professor of Literature at UNK, will read from his work.

March 31: Matt Mason, Pushcart Prize winner, 5-time team member at the National Poetry Slam, and director of “Louder than a Bomb: Omaha Youth Poetry Festival,” will read from his work.

April 1: Matt and Kids: after two days spent working with local school students, Matt Mason and the students will gather to read their work for the public.

Alma Chamber of Commerce Spring Fling – April 8 - 5-7:30 p.m.; stores stay open late; business booths and meal at auditorium, wagon rides, free drawings.

PLUS - World-class, free, easily self-guided lake, river & prairie birding year-round - trail and site maps available on our website or by mail.

Free Birding Boat Tours!
Morning and afternoon launch times available daily, March 25 - April 2 (weather permitting).
Sponsored by the Harlan County Lake Association for visiting birders.
Must register in advance via harlancountytourism@yahoo.com or 1-800-762-5498

Species list from a previous March 28 birding boat tour:

Snow Goose 34, Canada Goose 12, Wood Duck 8, Gadwall 125, American Wigeon 45, Mallard 1250, Blue-winged Teal 75, Cinnamon Teal 1 drake with possible Cinnamon Teal hen, Northern Shoveler 275, Northern Pintail 750, Green-winged Teal 175, Bufflehead 1, Ruddy Duck 3, Ring-necked Pheasant 2, Double-crested Cormorant 675, American White Pelican 550, Great Blue Heron 36 (rookery of 25+ nests), Turkey Vulture 35, Northern Harrier 1, Bald Eagle 2, Red-tailed Hawk 2, American Coot 28, Killdeer 8, Greater Yellowlegs 3, Wilson's Snipe 3, Franklin's Gull 6, Ring-billed Gull 42, Eurasian Collared-Dove 2, Mourning Dove 4, Belted Kingfisher 2, Red-bellied Woodpecker 2, Downy Woodpecker 3, Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 3, American Kestrel 1, Eastern Phoebe 2, Blue Jay 2, American Crow 6, Tree Swallow 13, White-breasted Nuthatch 2, American Robin 16, European Starling 9, Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 2, Song Sparrow 17, Northern Cardinal 2, Red-winged Blackbird 75, Common Grackle 50, Brown-headed Cowbird 3, House Finch 2, American Goldfinch 8, House Sparrow 7

- list courtesy of T.J. Walker, Nebraska Game and Parks Commission
 

 

posted on January 18, 2016

more news articles


Harlan County Lake Harlan County Lake

Big Lake

Harlan County Lake has over 13,000 surface acres of water and nearly 75 miles of shoreline, making it Nebraska's second-largest lake.

boating and watersports at Harlan County Lake boating and watersports at Harlan County Lake

Boating & Watersports

Bring your pontoon boats, fishing boats, jet skis, canoes, and tubes. Harlan County Lake offers over 13,000 surface acres of water for boating enthusiasts.

fishing at Harlan County Lake fishing at Harlan County Lake

Fishing

In Harlan County lakes and rivers you'll find walleye, wipers, northern pike, largemouth bass, white bass, crappie, and catfish. Several fishing tournaments are held in Harlan County each year.

Peckerneck Horse Trail in Harlan County motorcross track in Harlan County Lake

Outdoor Trails

Whether you're into motorsports or horses, nature trails or tubing down the Rupublican River, you'll find a trailhead just for you in Harlan County.

Hunting in Harlan County Hunting in Harlan County Lake

Hunting

Learn why hunters come from across the country to hunt turkey, pheasant, waterfowl, mule deer, whitetail deer, dove, quail, rabbits and predators in Harlan County, NE.

Harlan County Nebraska Communities Harlan County Nebraska Communities

Our Communities

Learn more about the towns of Alma, Huntley, Orleans, Oxford, Ragan, Republican City and Stamford, in Harlan County, Nebraska.

birdwatching in Harlan County birdwatching in Harlan County

Birding

Right in the center of North America’s central flyway, millions of birds of all shapes, sizes and species pass through this area every year. There are many opportunities for uncommon, unusual and interesting bird sightings in Harlan County.