Lookout Towers On The Platte River

Platte River State Park -- Lookout Tower

When you don’t own a drone, you take pictures like this:

the old fashioned way — you earn it.

Lookout Tower! There's the Platte!

After 100+ hard-won steps, I reached the tippity top of the lookout tower

at Platte River State Park, near Louisville, in eastern Nebraska.

Lookout Tower! Mahoney State Park

The first tall tower of the day belonged to Mahoney State Park,

just west of the above, and only 30 miles from home.

Platte River near Louisville, Nebraska

We “children of the corn” live a ways away from the river,

as do the cows, pigs, and soybeans you can’t see from up here.

Platte River: Mahoney State Park

Slow and shallow runs this river through the heart of the country.

Nebraska rates 2nd in cattle population, but 37th in peoples.

Per land area, we rank 15th, and 3rd for growing corn.

But when it comes to college football…well?

We are mostly famous for that.

Male Cardinal at Mahoney State Park

When you bleed HUSKER red,

you’re always on top of your game.

Photographs by Uncle Tree


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34 thoughts on “Lookout Towers On The Platte River

  1. This as high as I get in the flat lands, Maureen, and there’s a 5-foot fence around the top, so one can’t just fall off. 🙂 I liked that!

  2. Those are beautiful pictures. My family drove through Nebraska to Colorado Springs to see where our dad grew up. Stayed overnight in Cozad, NE. Ever hear of it? Looked nothing like your photos.

  3. Glad you liked these, ekurie! 🙂 Thank you very much!
    Nebraska gets weird out west after passing Cozad, no doubt.
    Hard to believe you’re even in the same state. But driving into Colorado is like a dream. Only been there twice…a long time ago.

  4. I love Nebraska’s great river, Uncle Tom, even though I have only visited its western portion. My husband and I wanted to see the confluence of the South and North Platte Rivers, but were very disappointed that there was no public park, or even public access in North Platte. I thought about starting a petitions to create Confluence Park. 🙂

  5. We have visited Nebraska’s River, Uncle Tree. In North Platte, we were disappointed not to be able to access the point where the South and North Platte merge. I was thinking about petitioning Nebraska to open a Confluence Park at that location. What do you think?

  6. respect Uncle Tree! Great you climbed up like that. My brother is a forester and I remember climbing fire towers with him in KwaZuou-Natal RSA, to look at views and the whole thing would sway!

  7. I think it’s a fabulous idea, Tanja. 🙂 Nebraska has a lot of state parks, but they are mostly concentrated in the eastern to northern parts of the state.

    Hope you get a chance to come again. Thank you!

  8. Loved your river photographs and poetic comments. Awesome. Made me homesick for an area I’ve never known. My people came from farmlands around Syracuse, Kansas near the Arkansas River.

  9. We just spent time in your home state again in May, and my next several posts will touch on some of our experiences. I also hope to return for the cranes in the spring!

  10. Thank you, Jan! 🙂 Good to know you know how it feels AND looks. Thankfully, it wasn’t windy that afternoon. Being able to stand still is certainly helpful for taking pictures of the larger view.

    The tower stands on the highest point in the park, so it doesn’t have to be super-tall to do the job. It’s maybe 6 stories high, but if it were 10 stories , I’d still do it! We’ll have to stay in one of their cabins overnight sometime, so I can sneak up there before, or after hours (if necessary 😉 ) to get some sunrise and sunset shots.

  11. Thank you bunches, puzzles! 🙂 Wide-open spaces have their places, true, but I can’t help but love living the Arbor State. Nebraska started the tradition for planting trees annually, and we continue to celebrate Arbor Day on the last Friday in April, year after twiggy year.

  12. What a nice compliment! 🙂 Thank you truly, angelbeam!

    Most of my backgrounds revolve around Mother Nature’s greens and Father Sky’s blues. I love the brightest colors thereon. Red and yellow in all their shades and combinations fill out my colorful palette quite nicely, methinks.

    Glad you liked. ❤ Much appreciated.

  13. Thank you very much, Barbara! 🙂 Glad you found my pedantry poetic. LoL I was trying to be informative, but I’ll always enjoy quaintly sounding off my vocabulary.

    I was born and raised in Sedalia, Missouri. One of my great-grandmothers was from Sabetha, Kansas. another set of great grandparents were from Weeping Water, Nebraska. I like how folks living in Kansas say, “Our Kansas”, instead of “Are-kunz-saw”, like the rest of us.

  14. Cool! Great to hear that, neighbor! 😉 I look forward to seeing your posts.

    I’ve got the feeling — I’ll be seeing those Cranes every year, long as I live. It is just so unbelievably awesome!

  15. Speaking of Mother Earth’s greens and blue skies, perhaps you will enjoy this latest one of mine.


    © 2018 Barbara Grace Lake

    So beautifully this day bestows
    Shape-changing clouds upon a base
    Of brilliant turquoise tinted sky
    Repeated in compressed blue ice
    Of ancient glaciers endless flow

    Horizons edge begins and ends
    Where blue-green sea meets aqua loft
    No separation line is seen
    Far distant color thins to air
    To merge into a spatial void

    Pristine the night, both clear and cold
    A meteor from distant space
    Streaks etching fire across the vault
    Whose roof of iridescent stars
    Are beacons, bright and beckoning

    From garden’s bower in leafy shade
    My dogwood’s tallest branches sway
    Its shadows cast upon broad sweep
    As home to mockingbirds their songs
    Awaken every living being

    Warm summer evenings into dark
    Plum mountain peaks impale the night.
    As sun resigns, its last full rays
    Bring alpine glows magenta, red
    Majestic gifts for looking up

  16. Now, that is poetry! 🙂 Exceptional piece, Barbara.

    Here I am drinking coffee, looking outside as the sun rises —
    a rare summer fog blanketing the golf course in dew —
    hoping this day is full of sweet surprises —
    then finding my head is in the clouds, thanks to you —
    your marvelous descriptions of our dream world
    highlighting the precious gifts of sight and sound and life.

    Thank you so much for sharing! ❤ A beautiful way to start my day.

  17. Wish I had more to show for all my time off, Linda.
    I will return to Platte River State Park for an overnight stay one of these days.
    You can rent a tipi (teepee) for $20, or a cabin for $60 to $100, and they just built 3 “glamping” cabins that’ll cost $165. Boy howdy! Are they fancy?!!! Yes.
    Reservations can be made a year in advance. I did check them out. They’re all booked every weekend until November. Bummer!


  18. And time off goes by so fast doesn’t it? You think you have all these days and they are gone before you know it.

    I have read or heard about the “glamping” cabins but never seen them. That’s really something … out in the wilderness and living like at a Hilton. But I’ll bet those pricey rooms are the first ones booked. The scenery there looks very beautiful, especially the rocks and waterfalls. So much to see and so little time Uncle Tree.

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