Spring has sprung; visit the outdoors

Sunset at Lake Zorinsky

Sunset at Lake Zorinsky

With spring finally upon us (allegedly), it’s time to get out and about.

As most people know, I love to take walks. I really enjoy grabbing my camera and heading to our area lakes. I can combine two favorites.

Omaha has several trails people can take. I have my favorite lakes to visit.

Walnut Creek Lake

Walnut Creek Lake

My ultra favorite is Walnut Creek Lake in Papillion. It’s a 15-minute drive from home, and worth the drive.

Walnut Creek’s paved walking trail takes you lakeside then shoots off to grassy areas, before returning lakeside.

The 3-mile walking trail allows people to get up close to the water. That comes in handy during the warm weather when frogs and other water creatures are active.

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Walnut Creek has a small island connected by a pedestrian bridge. There are benches for visitors to sit and take in the scenery. Geese, ducks and other water fowl give you both photo and viewing opportunities.

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Fishing and boating area allowed on the lake. There are trees and stumps located throughout the water, so navigation is important.

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For people with kids, the lake has a playground and picnic area. There is a dog park area where dogs can run off leash.

Next up on the lake tour is Chalco Hills, home to Wehrspann Lake. This used to be my favorite spot until Walnut Creek.

Wehrspann offers two walking routes – 7 miles and 5 miles. I’ve taken both. I like the 5-mile route better. It keeps you near the lake. IMG_0528 (2)

Chalco Hills has an old farmstead off the main driving route. The lake offers several picnic areas, and has a playground area.

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Wehrspann Lake is a nice-sized lake for our area. It has boating and fishing available.

The walking trails are paved, and mix between flat and hilly terrain.

Next up on tour is Zorinsky Lake. This lake is about 10 minutes from our house, but it is not my favorite. There are two walking routes – 4 and 7 miles. The longer route gives you views of the wetlands. The area on the western side of 168th Street allows the best photo opps since it is mostly trees and water.

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The area used primarily for recreation, such as boating and fishing, is located on the 4-mile route. The lake is wide open on this side, with multiple boat ramps.

Again, the lake offers picnic areas and a playground.

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Omaha has a couple more popular lakes – Standing Bear Lake and Cunningham Lake.

I have been to Standing Bear a few times. I know people who love the lake. It is just a little out of our area.

I’ve never been to Cunningham Lake, but want to visit it.

In addition, we have Carter Lake, the Missouri Riverfront, as well as other walking trails.

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Other cities have their great outdoor attractions, as well. Duluth has their harbor walk; San Diego and San Francisco have bay walks. And, a nod to my friends in the Last Frontier, Alaska has…well, Alaska.

Regardless of where we all live, we have great areas to enjoy the outdoors. The important thing is to take advantage of them.

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