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Rock Creek Station State Historical Park

  • Biking
  • Equestrian Trails
  • Hiking
  • Picnicking
Upcoming park events

Visit Calendar

Rock Creek Station was a stage and Pony Express station established in 1857 that become notorious one fateful day in 1861. On that July afternoon, James Butler Hickok killed David McCanles there and began his bloody career as a gunfighter.

Development of Rock Creek Station as a state historical park began in 1980. Archaeologists investigated and excavated sites of two ranches dating back to the 1858-1860 time period to determine building sites and to recover period artifacts. Some buildings have since been reconstructed.

Today, Rock Creek is a state historical park encompassing 350 acres of prairie hilltops, timber-studded creek bottoms, and rugged ravines. Deep ruts, carved by the many wagons that traveled the Oregon and California trails remain plainly visible at this picturesque park. Rich history and beautiful scenery draw visitors from near and far.

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Attractions

Visitor Center

The Visitor Center interprets the history of Rock Creek Station and houses exhibits of artifacts that were excavated from the site. The Visitor Center is open April 15 to April 23 on Saturday and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.; April 24 to Sept. 22 daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sept. 23 to Oct. 29 on Saturday and Sunday from 1-5 p.m. Admission is $2 for adults and $1 for children under the age of 13. There is no admission for children under 3.

Reconstructed buildings

Traffic on the Oregon Trail and Pony Express line tapered off in the late 1860s as stagecoach and wagon transportation were replaced by railroad travel, and Rock Creek Station fell into disrepair. In 1980, development of Rock Creek Station as a state historical park began, and the Pony Express barn, bunk house, and several cabins were reconstructed. These buildings are open to visitors today.

Hiking and nature trails

Rock Creek Station State Historical Park contains four miles of hiking and nature trails. The park’s reconstructed buildings and wagon ruts are visible from these trails. Maps guiding visitors on a self-guided walking tour of the park’s historic sites are available in the Visitors Center.

Equestrian trails

Four miles of equestrian trails wind throughout Rock Creek Station State Historical Park and the adjoining Rock Creek Station State Recreation Area. An equestrian campground is available at the Rock Creek Station State Recreation Areas.

Living history

Living history demonstrations by area reenactors are held periodically throughout the summer months.

Picnicking

The park has 38 picnic tables, 38 grills and three covered picnic shelters available.

Camping

Camping is available at adjoining Rock Creek Station State Recreation Area.
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Download campground map
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Contact Information

Address: Rock Creek Station State Historical Park | 57426 710th Rd. | Fairbury, Neb. 68352-5550
Phone: (402) 729-5777

Email: Send email