Climate in Nebraska is all the time a query mark, and this 12 months is not any totally different. This spring, we’ve had a variety of temperatures. These days, it’s been anyplace from 40 levels to 75 levels. This previous weekend we had completely beautiful climate! I made a decision to make the most of a heat and exquisite sunny day to get outdoors and discover. I felt like going someplace totally different, so I headed out for a day journey to Mahoney State Park, one of many premier state parks in Nebraska.
Eugene T. Mahoney State Park is a really massive, 700-acre state park positioned within the jap a part of Nebraska, midway between Omaha and Lincoln and proper off Interstate 80. The park is open year-round with loads of issues to see and do each month of the 12 months. Accomplished in 1991, it’s truly the primary Nebraska state park that was designed for year-round operation.
You are able to do a day journey to Mahoney like I did lately, or you possibly can spend a number of nights or weeks right here. The park admission is round $6 for a day go or $30 for an annual season go. Some folks might not wish to pay admission, however consider me, there may be a lot right here, it’s completely price it. You received’t be disenchanted!
From Omaha, I drove West on 1-80 to exit 426. It took me about 25 minutes to get to the park. As soon as I bought there, it was time to discover this large park.
I hadn’t been to Mahoney shortly and was blown away by all of the various things to do. You would keep right here every week and haven’t any hassle doing totally different actions each single day.
1. Go Horseback Driving
I began my time without work on the stables to see the horses. Path rides are such a cool factor to supply at a state park! You are able to do wrangler-guided path rides from Might to October for less than about $25 per individual, and children between 3 and 9 can do pony rides for lower than $10 per individual. I used to be there proper earlier than Might, so a bit of too early to go for a path journey, however I nonetheless walked over to the stables and area space to see the attractive horses. The horses have been simply ready on the fence and appeared so completely happy to have further consideration from guests. There have been fairly a number of different horse lovers there with me.
2. Head To Baright Lake And Owen Marina
From the horse area, I ventured over to Baright Lake and Owen Marina. You’ll be able to fish the stocked Baright Lake from the banks of the lake or from the bridge. And, should you don’t have your fishing gear, you possibly can borrow a fishing rod from the marina free of charge!
If you wish to get out on the water, you possibly can hire a paddleboat on the marina for a soothing technique to discover the lake. For those who’re hungry afterward, seize a snack and a drink from the marina. For extra fishing, there’s additionally one other bigger stocked fishing lake inside the park, CenturyLink Lake.
3. Hike The Trails
There are over 6 miles of trails and loads of paved walkways to discover right here. It was a bit of early within the season to see lots of flowering crops, however I nonetheless loved strolling alongside the paths, taking in the great thing about the native grasslands. I do know the park is even prettier throughout the late spring, summer time, and fall.
4. Go To A Present At The Theater
The Denman and Mary Mallory Kountze Memorial Theater holds reside performances in summer time and winter. The melodramas are a enjoyable technique to spend a night.
4. Golf: Mini Golf, Disc Golf, Or Driving Vary
I noticed households enjoying on the disc golf course and extra households making an attempt their luck on the 18-hole mini-golf course. Talking of golf, I checked out the driving vary at Mahoney to get in some apply earlier than golf season. If you wish to hit the driving vary however didn’t carry your golf equipment, no worries, as a result of they really hire golf equipment right here on the John R. Lauritzen Driving Vary.
5. Play Outdoors
The park has nearly every part you could possibly need should you have been a child. I noticed youngsters enjoying on the very massive outside playground by the theater, and on one other smaller playground and basketball courtroom up by the marina. The marina additionally has every kind of sporting gear obtainable for park visitors to borrow freed from cost, together with horseshoes, footballs, soccer balls, bocce balls, tennis balls and racquets, and every part you want for a softball recreation. Mahoney additionally has sand volleyball courts, softball fields, and tennis courts. Plus, there’s an indoor climbing wall on the Exercise Middle and an out of doors, 70-foot-high commentary tour to climb.
6. Lease Bikes
The park is absolutely large, and there’s no method you possibly can see all of it on foot. Many individuals have been biking by the park, and I observed they hire bikes proper on the park. That is tremendous handy for anybody that wishes to discover on two wheels however doesn’t need the effort of transporting their very own bike. The bike leases are self-service, so it’s very easy to stroll up and select your individual bike to hire for a number of hours or a day. And all of the bikes look new, so that you don’t have to fret about getting a motorcycle that can break down mid-way by your journey.
7. Go Ape At The Ropes Course
After strolling a few of the trails, I made a decision to go take a look at the opposite areas of the park by automotive. One of many latest and hottest additions to the park is the Go Ape Ropes Course. These aren’t simply fast zip line programs the place you go up and are executed in 20 minutes. These epic programs are anyplace from one to 3 hours in size!
Go Apes Ropes Course is an independently owned and operated ropes course the place you possibly can take your decide of three totally different zip lining and ropes programs. It doesn’t matter what you select, you’ll be actually gliding by the bushes and forests of the park. These adventures are a ton of enjoyable and never for the faint of coronary heart! For those who’re ready to climb up into the bushes and put forth bodily effort whereas making your method by the impediment programs, you’ll be rewarded with tremendous cool views of the park and the satisfaction that you simply conquered the course! There are minimal age and peak necessities that adjust in accordance with the course you choose. There’s additionally a most weight restrict of 285 kilos. Costs vary from about $15 as much as round $50 per individual.
One factor we’ve loved many occasions all through the years at Mahoney is their aquatic middle. The aquatic middle contains an superior wave pool, a daily swimming pool with a zero-depth entry space, and two water slides. It’s a good time for a really affordable worth. The wave pool is tremendous highly effective, so beware! I wasn’t ready for the way robust these waves are. Plus the wave pool will get actually crowded, so it’s straightforward to get squished. It’s actually, actually enjoyable, however preserve a maintain on any youthful youngsters with you! The slides are additionally surprisingly enjoyable for a lower-budget waterpark slide. And, regardless that it’s busy, the strains actually weren’t too lengthy. The pool space is open Memorial Day weekend by mid-August.
Mahoney has many alternative choices for lodging inside the park. There are many tent campsites together with RV tenting spots, over 50 totally different cabins, and rooms in the principle lodge.
We’ve stayed on the Mahoney cabins a number of occasions, they usually’re very good. Some state parks have what I’d contemplate primitive or rustic-type cabins. The cabins at Mahoney usually are not that. They’re all tremendous fashionable, with bogs, absolutely outfitted kitchens, and naturally, air conditioners! Many of the cabins have two bedrooms. There are even some with 4 bedrooms and in addition a pair six-bedroom cabins, that are nice should you’re having a giant group or household reunion. It’s also possible to keep in one of many 40 visitor rooms on the Peter Kiewit Lodge. The rooms within the lodge are extra like resort rooms with every having two queen beds and a mini-fridge. Costs for lodging begin round $100 per night time for the lodge rooms and attain as much as round $200 per night time for a lot of the two-bedroom cabins. The bigger cabins will price extra since they sleep so many individuals.
10. Get pleasure from Winter Actions
Within the winter, there’s no scarcity of issues to do, like ice skating on the ice rink, sledding, ice fishing, cross-country snowboarding, and winter mountain climbing.
Professional Suggestions: Guide your cabin as early as potential as a result of they replenish extraordinarily quick! And whilst you’re within the state, contemplate