Scenic Rivers

“Superb water quality and the free-flowing nature of the Niobrara support diverse life while unspoiled fossil-filled sandstone cliffs host more than 200 waterfalls.”

—Steve Hansen, ecotourism manager, Niobrara River Retreats

Niobrara, Dismal, Calamus, North Loup, Republican, Cedar, Elkhorn, Platte, and Missouri – Nebraska’s rivers are truly beautiful waterways. A river trip is an ideal outing for families looking for adventure.

Nebraska Game and Parks has a Water Trails Guide, providing information about access sites, points of interest, scenery and wildlife, detailed maps and more.


Niobrara Riverview Retreats

(402) 376-2679
P.O. Box 414
Valentine, NE 69201

Steve Hanson and his family run Niobrara Riverview Retreats, a business that transforms their love for the outdoors into an experience to share with visitors. A former fisheries biologist in Alaska, Steve is an expert naturalist who can explain in detail the botany, geology, biology and ecology of his surroundings. Niobrara Riverview Retreats borders two miles of the Niobrara River. It includes hiking trails and a 25-acre marsh, appropriate for canoeing and catch and release fishing. It is a working cattle ranch with accommodations for large numbers of visitors—perfect for conferences, workshops or retreats. Home-cooked meals can also be arranged. The Valentine National Wildlife Refuge is only 15 miles away, a stunning landscape of over 30 sandhills lakes spread out across 70,000+ acres with 260 identified bird species spotted. The ranch is also just miles from Ft. Valentine National Wildlife Refuge in which a visitor can see buffalo, prairie dogs, burrowing owls and many other species.

Activities: Tubing, canoeing, guided nature walks, orienteering, overnight stabling and horseback riding

Enjoy Peaceful, Meandering Waterways

Niobrara, Dismal, Calamus, North Loup, Republican, Cedar, Elkhorn, Platte, and Missouri – Nebraska’s rivers are truly beautiful waterways. A river trip is an ideal outing for families looking for adventure.

Nebraska Game and Parks has a Water Trails Guide, providing information about access sites, points of interest, scenery and wildlife, detailed maps and more.

Know of an ecotourist-friendly place in the Great Plains to explore rivers and other waterways? Email us at cgps@unl.edu