National Parks / Natural World

Missouri National River Crofton

Where is it at?

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Missouri National River
Lewis and Clark Visitor Center
55245 Nebraska 121
Crofton
NE
68730
Tel: 402 667-2550

Directions

From Yankton: Cross the Missouri River on US81 South. After 2 miles turn right (heading west) onto Nebraska Route 121. Follow this route, turn left after 4 miles and drive to the top of the hill. The visitor center parking lot entrance is on the right. Or From Yankton: Take South Dakota Route 52 west from Yankton six miles to the road that crosses the dam (Crest Road). Turn left onto the Crest Road (heading south) and follow this road until you come to Nebraska Route 121. Turn right and drive up the hill. The visitor center parking lot entrance is on the right. From US81 South: Drive north on US81 toward Yankton. Turn left onto Nebraska Route 121 and continue on this route until you reach the visitor center parking lot entrance.

Where are we going today?

Do you know how long the Missouri River is? Well, it's 100 miles - that's a pretty long river! But that also means that you have 100 miles of FUN to play with in the lovely Nebraska outdoors!

The Missouri National Recreational River is a great example of the untamed American West. It's a place where the family can get creative, get back to nature, and where imagination can run wild!

There are two free flowing stretches of the Missouri River that make up the National Park, and if you have a hard time deciding what to do first, you're not alone! Most of the 150,000 visitors each year can't choose either! Want to know why? Of course you do!

There are historic areas to explore, fishing to be done, boating to be enjoyed, and nature to be appreciated!

The best place to start your journey is at the Lewis & Clark Visitor Center. From here, the Mobile Ranger station is the next place you want to be heading! There are outside displays of the scenic river, and inside there are exhibits on the natural and cultural resources of the park, as well as fun touchscreen displays and kids activities. 

If it's fishing you love, you're in for a treat! From catfish, paddlefish, walleye and sauger, there are a number of species that you could be catching with your fishing skills!

We're telling you about the Missouri National Recreational River - so let's talk about those activities ON the river! You can float by canoe, kayak or boat, and enjoy the amazing scenic views along the way. Then, in the evening, sit back and enjoy the amazing night sky - it's an amazing place to see the stars!

Beautiful outdoor fun at the Missouri National Recreational River! 

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How much does it cost?

  • AdultsFree!
  • ChildrenFree!
LAST UPDATED 2015

When can we go?

Facilities open May to late September.

Open every day of the year.

Teachers corner

They can organize a field trip or a ranger in the classroom for students K - 12. .

I'm Hungry!

There are many options to dine in and around the park - and outside the park there are a number of restaurants too!.

Healthy Eating!

You're more than welcome to picnic in nature with your own healthy family lunch! .

Any Top Tips?

Check out the Junior Ranger Program at the visitor centers! They can get a badge and certificate! .

Doing our bit

The park are all about looking after this amazing river, so help them out by looking after it too! .

Need a little extra help?

The river can be a difficult challenge for those with mobility disabilities. The partner parks have accessible parking, picnic facilities and trails. .

Can I get one of those?

The Lewis & Clark Visitor Center has a bookstore where you can pick up some great items to take home with you! .

More information

Whist there isn't a fee for the Missouri National River, the Lewis and Clark Lake State Area has a $5 per vehicle fee if you cross over. .

What people are saying?

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    The Buffalo River is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. Take a few days off from your hectic life (yes you), travel to Ponca, AR and rent a canoe or bring your own. Drop in at Ponca with enough supplies for at least two nights on the river. Camp anywhere you like between Ponca and Pruitt. Leave no trace. Take your time. Go slow. Let the river take you as it sees fit. Use existing fire pits or better yet use none at all. Go in late March to early May for your best shot at ideal floating conditions. Check river conditions with local outfitters...Read More

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    Biker friendly paved roads had three pull thru camp sights for RVs great country to ride . I stayed at the Tyler. camp grounds is primitive but has dump station and water hydrant.

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    When we visit the Jasper, AR. area, it's such an adventure to walk the trails and do some trout fishing along the Buffalo National River. Scenic Hi-Way 7 is one of the most relaxing drives to enjoy and we do it as often as possible.

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    Awesome place must see

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    Beautiful river. River was down when we were there in October & all the rocks were lovely, the trees were changing colors. A wonder of God's creation.

Submit a review

by snoboardz1972

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The Buffalo River is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. Take a few days off from your hectic life (yes you), travel to Ponca, AR and rent a canoe or bring your own. Drop in at Ponca with enough supplies for at least two nights on the river. Camp anywhere you like between Ponca and Pruitt. Leave no trace. Take your time. Go slow. Let the river take you as it sees fit. Use existing fire pits or better yet use none at all. Go in late March to early May for your best shot at ideal floating conditions. Check river conditions with local outfitters to make sure water levels are good. Take an onion sack or get one from a local outfitter to store your trash while on the river. Please leave this place as you found it. It's too special of a river to leave it anything but pristine. Be careful and have fun. Side trip to Lost Valley before or after your float. Short day hike, but that's another review.

The Weather

Saturday

Conditions: Partly Cloudy
Temp: 44° F / 7° C
Humidity: 80 %
Wind: W - 10 MPH

Sunday

Conditions: Overcast
Temp: 39° F / 4° C
Humidity: 79 %
Wind: NW - 16 MPH

Monday

Conditions: Partly Cloudy
Temp: 41° F / 5° C
Humidity: 74 %
Wind: SSE - 8 MPH

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