Recreation

Davis Creek Recreation Area

The Lower Loup Natural Resources District provides the recreational facilities at the Davis Creek Dam and Reservoir. The dam and reservoir are part of the North Loup Irrigation Project constructed in the 1980s. The facilities are located near the Valley/Greeley County line about 5 ½ miles south of North Loup in central Nebraska. The earth-fill dam is placed on a tributary of Davis Creek.

The NRD has provided four covered picnic areas at Davis Creek that include both shelter and water. The recreation area includes two camping areas with electricity and water as well as two boat ramps. A new tent camping area was completed in the summer of 2019.  A map of the campgrounds can be found here.   A coin operated shower house is also provided.  Camping costs $19 per night.  To reserve a camping site, click here.

Security lighting has been installed at the rec area, near restrooms and the boat docks. The Lower Loup NRD also offers fishing access at Davis Creek for people with limited mobility. An aluminum fishing-pier has been installed to meet the needs of those confined to wheelchairs. For more information, see the Davis Creek Recreation Area map

There are two boat ramps, a fish cleaning station an RV sanitary dump, and parking areas.              

Because its primary use is irrigation storage, the lake levels vary with the time of year.  The lake is at its recreational best from Memorial Day to Independence Day.  Then water levels begin to drop as irrigation use increases.

Pibel Lake Recreation Area

The Lower Loup Natural Resources District owns and operates the Pibel Lake Recreation Area in southwest Wheeler County after a transfer of ownership from the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission.  The NRD completed a major renovation of the recreation area in 2016.  The improvements include a new picnic shelter on the south end of the lake, a pedestrian bridge across the north end of the lake, two ADA compliant fishing piers, improvements to the outlet structure, and a sedimentation basin to improve water quality at the recreation area. Several large, hazardous trees have also been removed. ADA-compliant handicap parking has been created.  Flood damage from 2009 and 2010 was also repaired.  New playground equipment has been installed and a recreational trail is also being considered. Part of the funding for the project came from the Nebraska Environmental Trust.

Pibel Lake Recreation Area is a 72-acre facility, including the 24-acre lake. For a facilities map of the rec area, click here.  The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission had renovated the lake prior to the NRD taking ownership in May, 2012. The lake is stocked with a variety of fish, including bluegills, largemouth bass, and channel catfish. For more information, see the Pibel Lake map.  A bathymetric map (showing the topography at the bottom of the lake) can be found here.

Part of the lake renovation project targeted water quality improvements and included the new sedimentation basin at the top of the lake.  The Lower Loup NRD has installed a water quality monitoring station to provide data on a number of water quality parameters.  To view the data, click here.

Lower Loup NRD Recreation Area Rules & Regulations

To view the rules and regulations for Davis Creek and Pibel Lake Recreation Areas, click here.

Ord Hike/Bike Trail

The Ord hike/bike trail on the north edge of Ord starts at Auble Pond in Bussell Park and continues to the Lower Loup Natural Resources District Arboretum.

The ten-foot-wide trail runs from the renovated pond along Dane Creek, then along the east edge of the Ord Cemetery to the NRD Arboretum. The trail is  constructed of six-inch thick concrete with a metal bridge where it crosses Dane Creek.

The trail was funded in part by a federal transportation grant with matching funds provided by former Ord Mayor Alfred Burson. Partners in the trail project are the City of Ord, the Lower Loup Natural Resources District, and the Nebraska Department of Roads. Private donors and grants have funded lighting for the trail.

Lower Loup NRD Arboretum

The Lower Loup NRD Arboretum is located just south of the NRD Headquarters offices at 2620 Airport Drive in Ord.  The Arboretum features a variety of trees and shrubs, both native and non-native species.  The east side of the Arboretum includes a wetlands area and viewing station.  There are cement picnic tables positioned in various locations on the north side of the Arboretum.  A portion of the Ord Hike/Bike trail runs through the Arboretum and the LLNRD completed its part of the trail loop through the Arboretum in 2013.

Area Lakes

The Lower Loup Natural Resources District is home to many popular lakes and recreation areas. Depth information can be found on the Calamus Reservoir and Sherman Reservoir maps.