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Crete, NEBRASKA

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Most Recent Crete Camping Reviews
It’s meh

Our stay was the weekend of Oct. 26. I prefer primitive camping in secluded areas. Not the case here. Sites are small and very close together. Luckily we stayed at the end of the season so the park wasn’t very busy. We did have semi close RV neighbors and their lights at night illuminated our surroundings. It was windy that weekend so the sound of the leaves and Interstate mostly drowned out the sound of the neighbors. Another downside was how close the park is to the Interstate. Park pricing wasn’t bad and staff was friendly and professional. I picked up more trash than we created during our stay, that was unfortunate. Even the fact that someone threw out plastic flower pots, there are dumpsters close by. SMH.

One my favorite

Great little lake. Fun to explore and hike in the wooded areas, and some of the best camping spots are a little hidden.

Close to town lakeside tent camping

The pros! Lakeside tent camping is always fun. Lots of activities, like boating, swimming, fishing, hiking, etc. And its close to town.

The cons! Its close to town, so it can be a bit crowded on nicer weekends.

Its great for overnighters in the middle of the week.

Bluestem

Easy access but a lil run down

Platte River State Park

Very nice park! Not as crowded as neighboring Mahoney State Park but very similar activities.

Mahoney

Very well kept park with so much to do!

Ranger Review: Banner & Oak Hats at Eugene T. Mahoney State Park, NE

Campground Review:

Eugene T. Mahoney State Park in Nebraska is on the Platte River off Interstate 80 about halfway between Omaha and Lincoln.  I will preface the review stating that the review is receiving four stars primarily because of the amenities at the park.  The campgrounds themselves are fairly basic.  There are areas to tent and park your RV within the state park.  The RV campground has about a dozen full hookup sites and the rest of the campsites have electric hookups.  There is not much room between the sites, so you do feel that you are stacked on top of the other campers.  There is a wait list for the campgrounds much of the year.  We were able to score a walk-up thankfully.  The site does have water fill stations and a dump station.  Their shower house is also decent enough.

But, as I said you are not coming here to hangout in the campground.  There is something for everyone at this state park.  They have hiking on paved and un-paved trails, which we utilized both.  There is an activities center for kids to make different arts and crafts.  They have horseback riding, a theater, paddle boating, parks, minature golf, etc.  During the summer you can have fun at the big water park they have on site.  They also have cabins and lodge rooms available for rent.  The cabins book quickly, and can get pricey at around upwards of $400 a night during their peak season for one of the newer cabins.  The lodge houses a decent restaurant with some great views of the Platte River. 

At the main activities area they have a massive indoor play area for kids.  This building also houses their new and extremely fun 40ft. climbing walls.  Outside this building during the winter they have a covered ice rink and they also produce their own snow for the sledding hill.  All-in-all it is a nice place with plenty to do onsite.

Product Review:

As a Ranger for The Dyrt I occasionally get to test products.  While out at the state park we got the opportunity to test out Banner & Oak hats. https://bannerandoak.com/ 

My boys and really appreciate good hats.  We found the Banner & Oak brand hats to be really exception hats.

The hats my sons wore were the Banner & Oak Eagle and the Banner & Oak Sierra.  These two hats were made in the United States.  I wore the Banner & Oak Switchback which was not produced in the United States.

All three hats are really quality hats.  The stitching is tight around the sweatbands and the bill, which is usually a sign the hat will last a long time.

The mesh used for the back of the hat appears to be an older heavier duty mesh.  This mesh reminds me of the mesh found in older hats, or the hats of my youth.  I still have a couple of these hats, so this is another good sign of lasting quality.

The overall designs of all three hats are really just cool.  They look cool and they feel cool, and I am really surprised by how much I like the flat billed hat, since I usually cannot stand them.  The boys and I are really impressed with the construction and feel of the Banner & Oak hats!

Car racers paradise

Ranger Review: Red Ledge Free Rein Rain Jacket at Lincoln Air Park Campground

Campground Review:

Having downtown Lincoln about 20 minutes away from Lincoln Air Park means that there is a lot to do and go see close by.  Being a SCCA (Sports Car Club of America) member means that when you go to an event at Lincoln Air Park, you can camp on site. 

This isn’t your typical campground by any means. This is a huge paved area of the airport where the SCCA hosts autocross races.  This means that you must bring all your camping gear with you. It is typically motor homes and RVs that stay on the site, but a few brave people pack a tent and set it up on the concrete pad.

There are little to no amenities on-site so you need to be prepared.  There are port-a-potties but no drinking water available. If you do need water or septic tanks serviced, there is a $50 fee to have a company come out and fill or empty those in your RV.

The quiet hours on-site are from 10PM to 6AM and the rest of the day it is loud.  There are cars running the autocross course and the occasional plane takes off on the adjacent runway.  Like I said, this isn’t your typical campground, but it is very nice to be able to stay on-site while racing.

Being on-site is great as you get to socialize with other competitors after the days events and many times the SCCA will sponsor a dinner for the drivers after an event.

What is great about this area is the Haymarket in downtown Lincoln.  It is worth the short 15 to 20 minute drive to experience all the great restaurants and activities they hold in this beautiful downtown setting.  You can find out more at https://lincolnhaymarket.org/.

Product Review:

As a Ranger for The Dyrt, I sometimes get to test out various camping gear.  At the Lincoln Air Park I tested out the Red Ledge Free Rein rain jacket. This is the perfect spot to put the rain jacket to the test, as it always seems to rain a couple times during my stays in Lincoln.

This is the nicest rain coat I have ever owned.  I'm used to the heavy ones that do not breathe at all.  I was surprised at how well made this Red Ledge rain jacket is.  The rain jacket is a good material thickness for the cooler rainy days, but I also don't think it is too hot when it gets muggy out during the rain.  This jacket has pit zippers which open up a huge area to let you get some fresh air in and the hot air out.

I find these a must now that I've worn a rain jacket with venting areas.  This just makes you so much more comfortable. I was also able to keep these completely open during the rain and I never got wet.

I also really like the hood on this rain jacket.  Most rain jackets have a hood but it is always in your face and if you turn your head it gets in the way.  The hood has a shock cord running through it that can be tightened, above your ears where a baseball cap is worn, and it keeps the hood in place.  This is great and I found it to be very comfortable.

I am 5'10" and 154 lbs. I read a review that said the rain jacket runs a little small so I ordered a large which is a size up from my normal jackets.  I found this to be just about perfect. The back is longer than the front of this jacket, which I like for using on a bicycle and the sleeves were just about an inch or two long which is great for reaching for the handlebars on the bike.  I would recommend one size up from your normal size as it also allows you to put another layer on underneath if you need to in colder weather.

Another bonus is the great colors this jacket comes in.  I like the bright colors offered as compared to many other rain jackets that seem to be black, or other dark colors.

See http://redledge.com/collections/free-rein/products/mens-free-rein-jacket to see more about the rain jacket!

Awesome

The park is well kept, the sites have plenty of space to them so you don’t feel like you’re on top of someone else’s camper. There’s playgrounds and a pool, a dog park, basketball court and disc golf. The nicest park we’ve stayed at for sure.

Really nice campground that is missing shade

Lake Wanahoo is a fairly new lake in Saunders county Nebraska. The lake is part of the local NRD and was originally managed by the state parks department. You used to be able to use your state park permit to gain entry, but now you need to either buy a day pass or a yearly pass from the NRD.

There are plenty of places to camp here including gravel pads and grass pads for RV’s. While most people seem to prefer the gravel pads closer to the lake, we actually prefer grass pads because they are 2-3 larger, so you have more room to setup.

The tent camping area is huge and there always seems to be plenty of availability. We were the only tent in the entire area. The tiered tent area allows you to have a great view of the lake from wherever you setup. All RV and tent spots have picnic tables and fire rings. Unfortunately when the lake and campground were built they planted saplings, so during the hot months there is no shade to be found.

The is still plenty to do at the lake from getting the fishing boat out, using their three wide boat ramp or fishing from the shore using bank or using a jetty. There is a gravel trail that goes all the way around the lake, which provides about a three mile loop. The trail also leads down into the town of Wahoo. There are two large play areas for kids. One is in the campground and one is across the lake in the day use area.

No matter where you go you are not far from a restroom. There are nice clean vault toilets available all around the lake. There is also a large bathroom/shower house in the campground. The shower house does have a change machine on the outside of the build to get change for the showers. These are kept very clean and tidy.

When pulling your RV out here the water fill is in an awkward spot in a parking lot of the campground. To get to the dump station you have to leave the campground, get on the highway and drive to the opposite side of the lake to the day use area. These were just installed a couple years ago. They are nice and level, but just add a bit of driving to get to them.

All-in-all this is a nice place and in a few more years of tree growth, it could be even better!

One of my favorites

Tent camping sites. No electrical hookups but you can still camp in campers if you want. Beautiful Campground with lots of trees and shade. Very nice Lake with fishing available. There appears to be an option for canoe rentals available. Boat ramp and dock. Multiple bathroom locations within the campground. Picnic tables near the water. I’ve kayaked the lake! So much fun.

Quiet spot

We were the only tent campers here, about half of the 16rv spots were taken. It’s right on a little river and has a play set and portapotty. Self check in and cheap! About 10 min off of I80. It is a great spot to stop for the night.

Very nice!

Very nice campground. Kid friendly with tons of activities. Nice pool & hot tub. Clean laundry facilities and they even have a dog park.

Wouldn’t stop again

Stopped here for one night on a long trip. I was disappointed at first that the swim area was closed already in Mid-August but then I saw it and changed my mind. The areas around the campsites and for swimming were large ponds. I wouldn’t have let my kiddo in there if it was open. The pit toilets were absolutely disgusting, but I guess that is to be expected. Road noise was pretty intense at night. Overall I wouldn’t stop here again.

Nice and quiet

Great place! Nice open spaces, never too crowded, well maintained!

Conestoga State Recreation area. Site 50 and major renovation review

Conestoga SRA is an increasingly popular campground following major renovations that were completed in 2018. Improvements to the picnic tables, restrooms, added shelter area and most importantly a complete overhaul of the lake have made this a much improved campground. Conestoga is entirely walk up with no reservations. You can easily self register at the park entrance and a second location closer to the lake centrally located between two of the three camping areas. A pack in primitive campground was also added to the lake and is accessible via a gravel hiking path. Fishing for mature fish will not be possible until 2021 according to Nebraska game and parks. I did see plentiful immature fish while kayaking the lake in June of 2019. The lake was complete dredged out and the parks commission added several silt pond around the lake to capture silt run off. This should keep this lake much cleaner than it was in the past. The park is boat and kayak friendly these days with the addition of two brand new boat ramps. By my count there were three new fishing docks going up although only one was completed during my stay. This is not relatively quite campground but it is popular. Kids can ride their bikes all around the paved and gravel rounds throughout the camp. The sites in the row on the side of site 50 are huge. We enjoyed spreading our stuff out with multiple tents and played games in the large open space. Shade is limited over a good 1/3 of the powered sites. The primitive site closer to the lake is well shaded with mature trees. There was a camp host who made sure we knew where the storm shelter was on the night of our stay. We nearly needed to use it as we experienced a severe thunder storm. There are 25 camp pads offering 20-30–50 amp hook ups and another 8 non electric pad sites. There is a dump station and several vaulted, well maintained toilet houses. Water is also available. If you plan on boating there is a 5mph speed limit so this is more of a canoe or kayaking lake or just for fishing. I highly recommend this SRA close to Lincoln Nebraska

Quiet and peaceful

We had a quiet weekend, though the camp was less than half full. Electrical hookups and tent camping are available. We stayed in the bottom section, close to water, the view was very nice. They have a playground and beach area, primitive restrooms, boat ramp, and at least two covered areas for gatherings. There is no dump station, the nearest one is about 6 miles North at Milligan at a gas station along highway 41. No wake boating, but kayaking/canoeing the lake is the best way to see and fish this lake. Check out web site here http://littlebluenrd.org/recreation/#Lone_Star.

Family Friendly

Convenient location right off the highway, but with that you do get the noise. Has a playground and pool as will as a convenience store. Bathrooms and showers were clean. Not much to do outside of the campgrounds, but we were just passing through so was an ideal spot for us. Offers military discount.

Beautiful

I only stayed the night, but as I was walking my dogs I saw the camp. Everywhere you turn there was something to do. Good fun.

Scenic spot

Scenic lakeside campsites. A great time. Upkeep could be better as dumpsters were overflowing however.

Family Fun

This site is great for any size family. The range of different camping options and amenities is incredible. The facilities are well maintained, the staff is friendly and helpful. Everything is nicely spread out on the grounds, and the location is near the highway to reach other amenities. A definite winner!

Horseback riding and archery.

Very clean Campground very well maintained horseback riding was a blast and the archery range was cool as hell face to the T-Rexes

Great place to camp

Great campground nice shade on part of rv sites . Easy access, very nice shower house, very well kept. Only improvement would be sewer hookups. Highly Recomend

Long time camper here!!

I love the whole park - especially the archery range!!

Price hikers

We stayed there 2 months earlier and is primitive camping so we have rv with generator and price for site was 8 dollars a night for a camp site. Good deal so went back same place set up in same area. Dog Shit all over ground bad i mean real bad and price jumped to 15 a night . Well because we had been there before and knew the price we set up camp and then went to pay. Surprise 15 a night, were going stay a week but stayed one night. 15 a night with dog crap all over and not just my site all along the lake must have had dog convention. Very disapointed will not go back

First to Review
Camp ground becomes private or reserved

Was going to stay for the fair and other events and was told camp ground was reserved for fair people and 4 h . Well thats fine but put up a sign saying camp ground is closed. We were there first and We were first told we could stay so we unloaded and were then told we could not stay. Bad deal We will NOT ever be back.

Great if Attending an Event or Passing Through

Right next to the event center, tent or rv camping is allowed. Depending on what's happening that day, it can be quiet or very busy. All sites are gravel and have electrical hookups. Internet is available throughout the area. Fires must be contained in an enclosed fire pit and pets must be kept on leash at all times. You can use the arena for showering during the day which is incredibly helpful.

Decent for Short Trips or Fishing

We primary stop by this site for fishing as the lake is regularly stocked. It's great for kayaking or small boats. There is very little shade available at this campground as it is a man-made area so bring the sunscreen. Fires are allowed and pets must be on leash. RV sites and tent camping site are available.

Pleasantly Surprised

I give 5 stars because of purpose. I rate based off of what I’m looking for and if it fits my needs. I try not to compare the likes of city campgrounds to those in the mountains (apples and oranges) I also wasn’t sure what to expect but was very happy with this campground. Had originally planned on tripping to Omaha more than one day but only ended up only going once to hit the Henry Doorley Zoo because we had enough to occupy us at the campground. Very kid friendly with great staff. sites were fairly close together but have been at worse. Pro & Con - right next to the interstate. Since we were site seeing around the area it was convenient instead the more nature excursion camping trip. But the traffic noise is not the most desirable. Would be a great place to stay if you’re going to go to a corn huskers game-short drive to the stadium. We actually went to a minor league ball game; Lincoln Salt Dogs, was a good time and also great time for the kids! If we ever venture that direction again I will gladly stay here again.

Lots of fun things to do!

Pros: SO many activities for the kids - water park, ceramic painting, paddle boats, indoor play area, lots of playgrounds, picnic areas for family gatherings, zip lines, horseback riding. Also nice to have bathhouse with shower and flush toilets. Convenient location right off the highway and 5 mins from the Air and Space Museum.

Cons: SO many bugs. Make sure you bring lots of bug spray. RV sites are pretty close together and are very small. Our site only had electric hookups - no water. It was crazy hot and humid when we stayed there at the end of June.

FYI - If you want to stay in a cabin, they tend to book a year in advance.