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Camping & Lodging
All cabins and similar facilities are privately owned. Nebraska Game and Parks does not offer cabin rentals at the State Recreation Area.
Camping facilities are both private and public. Click here for a list of several privately owned campgrounds.
What you need to know:
All vehicles inside the State Recreation Area must display a valid Nebraska Park Entry Permit. The permit fees are: Nebraska Licensed Vehicles – annual, $30; duplicate annual, $15; daily, $6; Non-Nebraska Licensed Vehicles – annual, $45; duplicate annual, $22.50; daily, $8.
All overnight camping requires a fee. For Lake McConaughy SRA, Full Service sites are $37, Electric Plus sites are $32, Basic sites are $17 and Primitive sites are $12. For Lake Ogallala SRA, Electric Plus sites are $30 and Primitive sites are $10. http://outdoornebraska.gov/parkpricing/
Park Entry Permits and Overnight Camping Fees are available at the Park Visitor Center and gate houses during peak hours. Park Entry Permits can also be purchased online at https://ngpc-permits.ne.gov/NGPC-PS/faces/public/welcome Overnight Camping Fees and Daily Park Entry Permits can be purchased 24/7/365 at Self-Pay Stations located at each modern campground and most park entrances.
For questions relating to Nebraska Game and Park rules and camping policies: http://outdoornebraska.gov/parkfaq/
Beach camping is one of the most unique features of Lake McConaughy SRA. The entire shoreline at Lake McConaughy is within the State Recreation Area. Water levels permitting, you can pull your camper or RV on the beach, rent an RV, or pitch a tent in designated areas. These areas qualify as “primitive” camping sites and are subject to the $12/night fee. Also be aware that changing water levels and drying sand can provide a challenge to vehicle traffic on the beach. 4×4 is a necessity, and some private concessions also offer towing service.
Beach Areas are generally designated by Day Use Area, Walk-In Access Area, Managed Vehicle Access Area, Threatened and Endangered Species Area or they remain undesignated, but fall under all of Nebraska Game and Parks – Park Regulations.
Day Use Areas are generally open to all designated recreational activities with the exception of overnight camping and vehicle access. Walk-In Access Areas are generally open to all designated recreational activities with the exception of vehicle access. Managed Vehicle Access Areas are generally open to overnight camping and vehicle/RV access. Threatened and Endangered Species Areas are closed to all public access including foot and vehicle traffic.
Need a shower? Pay showers are available at Lone Eagle, Little Thunder, Cedar View, and Lake Ogallala East Campgrounds in addition to the stand-alone shower buildings near the Martin Bay and Arthur Bay entrances to the State Recreation Area.
Remember to share the shoreline with the many bird species that make their home at Lake McConaughy, especially the endangered least tern and threatened piping plover. Visitors are asked to avoid marked or fenced off nesting areas of beach, obey all signs, and keep all pets on leashes. For more information, see the Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District website.