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Lake Ogallala State Recreation Area

Know before you go

To create a safer, family-friendly environment, possession and consumption of alcohol is prohibited at Lake McConaughy and Lake Ogallala State Recreation Areas.

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  • Boating
  • Camping
  • Canoe/Kayak
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • Picnicking
  • Playground
  • Swimming

Located on the east side of Kingsley Dam and massive Lake McConaughy, Lake Ogallala is known as “the little lake.” Chilled by the massive surface of Lake McConaughy, Lake Ogallala is a well-known fishing destination, particularly renowned for its fast-growing and feisty rainbow trout. Compared to Lake McConaughy, Lake Ogallala is small, gentle and sedate at 320 acres. It lacks the sandy beaches of its neighbor to the west, but its protected shoreline wards off winds. Along with fishing, visitors come to paddle, camp and enjoy the scenery.

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Fishing

Lake Ogallala is well-known for its quality fishery, and rainbow trout are among the species most popular with anglers. In addition to rainbow trout, anglers may find yellow perch, channel catfish and an occasional wiper. There is one fish cleaning station, improved angler access areas in the northwest corner, west side and near the Kingsley Hydro as well as a kayak launch dock at the North Boat Ramp.
For more information on fishing opportunities here and at parks across the state, visit the interactive public fishing areas map. This map provides detailed information on available species, regulations, public boat ramps, fish cleaning stations and ADA-accessible boat ramps and docks, among other features in reservoirs, lakes, streams and rivers statewide. Lake contour maps are available for some lakes, as well.

Boating

All boats are permitted, but Lake Ogallala is a no-wake lake. Non-motorized watercraft are very popular at Lake Ogallala due to the protection from the wind offered by Kingsley Dam. There are two boat ramps and two boat docks available along with a kayak launch dock at the north boat ramp.

Hiking

The Lake Ogallala Hike-Bike Trail is located on the east side of Lake Ogallala inside the Lake Ogallala Modern Campground. The two-mile trail runs on top of the northern dyke that holds Lake Ogallala and ends at the Nebraska Public Power District’s Diversion Dam.


Camping

Campgrounds


Lake Ogallala offers campers Electric Plus and Basic campsites.

Lake Ogallala East Campground

Located at the East Entrance of Lake Ogallala off the Keystone Lake Road, this area features hard surfaced roads and pads with 82 Electric Plus sites, water available throughout the area and a restroom and shower facility. Approximately half of the sites are available for advanced reservation from May 15 to October 15.

Lake Ogallala West Campground

Located at the West Entrance of Lake Ogallala off the Keystone Lake Road, this Campground offers 203 Basic campsites and is spread across multiple locations on the west side of Lake Ogallala and includes many lake front sites. All sites are grass and most have a table and grill. Other Amenities include drinking water, fish cleaning station, playground and south boat ramp.

Maps

Lake McConaughy/Lake Ogallala Master Plan

In 2016, the Nebraska Game and Parks Board of Commissioners approved a 20-year management plan for Lake McConaughy and Lake Ogallala with input from local stakeholders and the general public.

Master Plan

Nearby Attractions

Keith County and the City of Ogallala

Keith County and the City of Ogallala offer a wonderful variety of attractions in the Lake McConaughy Area. Ogallala, better known as Nebraska’s Cowboy Capital, is home to several Western-themed places of interest, including Boot Hill, the Mansion on the Hill museum, and the Petrified Wood & Art Gallery. For more information on local attractions, visit ILoveLakeMac.com.

Ash Hollow State Historical Park

Ash Hollow State Historical Park is a must-see when visiting Lake McConaughy. Ash Hollow is west of the Lake on Highway 26 or 92 and was an important stopping point on the Oregon/California Trail. Ruts of covered wagons carrying westbound immigrants on the Overland Trail can still be seen, and prehistoric cave dwellings have been preserved. Ash Hollow’s Visitor Center offers displays and information on the area’s rich history. The grounds at Ash Hollow offer over 2-miles of scenic hiking trails and a designated area for equestrian riding.
Visit Ash Hollow State Historical Park

Park Fees

A park entry permit is required and may be purchased at the park, statewide Game and Parks offices and permit vendors or in advance of your arrival online. For a complete list of park and activity fees, click the button below.

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Contact Information

Address: Lake Ogallala SRA | 1475 Hwy. 61 N | Ogallala, Neb. 69153-5930
Phone: (308) 284-8800

Email: Send email