Chimney Rock National Monument
Chimney Rock National Monument is another landmark on the Oregon Trail. The entire monument is a rock formation sticking above the surrounding grassland. For the settlers on the Oregon Trail, it was another sign that they had survived the Great Plains and were reaching the mountains.
The monument itself is just a parking area, a sign, and the rock. A small trail may have led into the grassland for fifty or a hundred feet, but it offered only a slightly better view than that from the parking lot or even from a passing car. If one is passing by on the way to another destination, it may be worth stopping to take a picture. There isn't enough to do there to make Chimney Rock a destination. Someday, I hope to put my picture of Chimney Rock on my site.
NORFOLK, NEBRASKA is in the Northeastern part of the state. It's also the home of Johnny Carson. Nice area of the state.
http://www.norfolk.ne.us/Tourism/ has more info on this part of the state, including the Elkhorn Valley Museum, which will feature items donated by Johnny Carson
One of our favorite places in Nebrasaka is in the Northwest corner of the state. There you will find Fort Robinson State Park. Fort Robinson used to be a military outpost. Today the buildings have been restored; you can tour them, take a ride across country in a stage coach, or view a local herd of buffalo. This part of the state is hilly and there are some nice streams and woods.
Western Nebraska has a series of natural rock formations including 'Courthouse and Jail Rocks', 'Chimney Rock' (pictured), and the scott's bluff national monument. These are all located on the 26/92 state freeways. An intersting side trip if you are passing through.
Carhenge located off of route 385 near Alliance in the western part of the states, is one of those sights that make any roadtrip worthwhile. Carhenge is a re-creation of Stonehenge with the blocks being replaced by old cars. The effect is startling. The cost is free, and if you are anywhere near the area it is worth the side trip to see an amazing piece of Americana.
From the BlackBird look out along the route 75, south of the village of macy and north of the village of decatur, one can have fantastic views of the river missouri, imagining yourself in the company of lewis and clark who came around these parts nearly two hundred years ago. this picture taken around 8 pm on a june evening, clear blue skies, silent river and crickets chirping, grass bowing to a cool breeze, otherwise you are alone, just the spirits of the river, the trees and the animals and the UmonHon Indians who had lived here before us, that is all. so relaxing and realigning oneself to the world around you and centering yourself to what is important and what is not important.
Carhenge is located just outside my hometown of Alliance, along Highway 87. While 76 miles from the Interstate, it's worth seeing if you're going to be in the area anyway, just to say you've seen it.
(Those who have paid close attention to Hyundai commercials, Malcolm in the Middle, and 'Omaha: The Movie' might have seen it on screen already)
And yes, it is a replicate (in size and proporation) to England's stonehenge made of exclusively American cars.
One thing my wife and I like to do as we travel is shop in antique stores and flea markets. There is a big Brass Armadillo antique mall on I-80 West of Omaha. Next to it is another antique mall that is just as big.
South of Kearny we were crane watching and came across Fort Kearny State Historical Park. It is the site of an 1800's military post built to protect wagon trains along the Oregon Trail. It is located at 1020 V Rd., Kearney, NE 68847. We took a tour of it as long as we were in the area.
In Nebraska City Wildwood Historic Home is not as big as the Morton mansion so fewer people visit it. I had a nice time there because of the friendly woman who gave me a tour and answered my questions about the home and the area. Wildwood is near other points of interest on Steinhart Park Road.
Because so much of the Sand Hills is covered by large ranches 8,000 -- 40,000 -- 100,000 acre ranches, much of the beauty of the Sand Hills is missed because people stick the paved services. Venture onto a dirt road. The Sand Hilll ranchers are some of the finest I have ever met. Remind me a lot of the 'Old Texans.' They work hard and appreciate what they have.
THE MIDDLE OF THE MISSOURI RIVER IS THE DIVIDING LINE BETWEEN NEBRASKA AND IOWA.
Here is a view looking back across the river. You are looking at Omaha.
The 'Thorns'; a subdivision outside of Lincoln. Okay, I know it's not named after me or my family but I still get a kick out of it.
WHILE SIGNING IN AT 'THE TOP', I NOTICED THE NAME OF A PERSON I MET WHILE CLIMBING IN IDAHO THE MONTH BEFORE. SMALL WORLD!
NOTICE MY CAR AT THE HIGH POINT. AS YOU CAN SEE, IT NO DOUBT TOOK AN EXPERT TO UNCOVER THAT THIS PARTICULAR SPOT IS THE HIGHEST POINT IN NEBRASKA!