NHTC Activity Course
Construction has begun on the Trail Activity Course at Branched Oak Lake near Raymond, Nebraska. The Nebraska Horse Trails Committee volunteers have started installation of equipment to provide learning opportunities to the trail rider. Equestrians will find a panel gate to open and close, a couple bridges to cross and a large platform to step up and down. About 10 obstacles will be constructed in course to make your horse more trail savvy. Construction will continue through August and the NHTC is planning an grand opening at the NHTC Trail Challenge on Sept. 8.
Soft Launch of New Website
If you are reading this, you may have noticed a different look to our website. While it is still a work in progress, this soft launch is the start to more things to come. This new site will give us the tools for online registration to our events, ticket sales to Expo and the Trail Challenge and a way to donate to this non-profit organization. We will also be actively pursuing memberships to our organization through this website. While we wish there was an easy button to make it all happen quickly, check back often as it begins to come to life and we add more features.
In the meantime, take a tour of our site. You may find some links do not provide content. Don't worry. They are placeholders for things to come.
Friends of Lake Cunningham Clear Trails
A special thanks to the Friends of Lake Cunningham and other trail users who participated in the recent trail clearing. This popular Omaha park is used by bikers, hikers and horse back riders and it is good to see the different groups come together to make the trails even better! Pattianne Belitz, John Orr, Keith Verring and Mike Anderson took the NHTC trailer onsite and our equipment was put to good use!
New Corral Bottoms at Rock Creek
The corrals at Rock Creek Station's horse camp in Jefferson county have new foundations! NHTC Board Members, Mary and Dwight Hanson of Ithaca donated and installed unwashed limestone in all of the corrals at this popular park. The goal is to make a more solid surface, eliminating the mucky bottoms after rain and making the corrals easier to clean. We appreciate the people who volunteer their time, talents and financial support to trail projects.
Trail Clearings are Underway
With the wet and stormy spring, a lot of our trails took a beating. The Nebraska Horse Trails Committee and Volunteers have been hitting the parks and doing some clearings and clean-ups. On April 21, the crews met at Two Rivers State Park near Waterloo for a general clearing. The wildlife management area of this park is heavily wooded and becomes quite wind damaged during the colder months. In addition, rising river waters will bring debris onto the trails. The group was successful in opening up many of those trails. Board members, Shari and Dave Reeble, are instrumental in keeping the trails mowed during the season and reporting any clean-up efforts which may require a larger group.
On a hot day in June, the NHTC crew met with management of Branched Oak Lake and headed out to the trails between areas 1 and 2. Work was mostly spent on the south trails, clearing the canopy of brush which hung over the trails and removing deadfall. The park also put in a culvert in a wet area. There are plans for additional culvert work in the future. Board member Tanya Lynch keeps the committee abreast of any issues on the trails at Branched Oak.
We encourage riders to participate in these important clearing days. Not only will you be supporting your passion, you are showing you appreciate the efforts of our parks to keep the trails and parks open to horses.
You Can't Miss Peckerneck!
For those travelers heading east down Highway 183 near Alma, you can't help but notice a new sign attracting riders to the Peckerneck Trail. Tanner Kauk grew up south of Alma and knows the trail is much appreciated by locals and visitors to the area. He believes the sign will help those not familiar with the area aware of the turn off and alert other travelers of this equine rest stop. As part of his Eagle Scout project and with funds provided by the NHTC, the sign was recently erected. Thank you, Tanner, for thinking of horse trails for your important project.