Operating Hours & Seasons


Public River Access & Trails:

The western reach of the Scenic River has public access points at the Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge, Smith Falls State Park, and the Middle Niobrara Natural Resource District's Brewer Bridge landing. Other landings are privately owned. Please contact the outfitters for more information.

Nature trails are found at the refuge and state park. The Fort Niobrara Refuge also features a driving tour through elk and bison pastures and a prairie dog colony. The hike to Fort Falls is fairly short and provides a spectacular view.

Three Other Resources that might be of Interest:

Fort Niobrara National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
4 miles east of Valentine off of Hwy 12.


Exhibits explains Fort Niobrara history, local wildlife, and refuge management. Several wayside exhibits addressing Scenic River use and safety are located at the Fort Niobrara launch site.

Smith Falls State Park
Nebraska Game and Parks Commission
15 miles east of Valentine on Hwy 12 and 4 miles south on a gravel road
Smith Falls State Park - Nebraska Game and ParksNebraska Game and Parks | (outdoornebraska.gov)

Open May through mid-September.

Niobrara Council
280 N. Main Street
Valentine, Nebraska

The Niobrara Council is a state-recognized organization dedicated to assist the National Park Service and other partners in managing the Niobrara River, coordinating development and carrying out a conservation easement program. Here you can find visitor information as well.

The 16 member council has representatives from local, state and federal governments, local landowners, county commissioners, area industries and the environmental community.

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

214 W US Highway 20
Valentine, NE 69201


402 376-1901

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