MoPac Trail (Springfield)


21 Reviews

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MoPac Trail (Springfield) Facts

States: Nebraska
Counties: Sarpy
Length: 13.2 miles
Trail end points: Schram Rd. (Springfield) and 20105 NE-31 (Springfield)
Trail surfaces: Crushed Stone
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6577643

MoPac Trail (Springfield) Description


The MoPac Trail in Springfield is a 13.2-mile trail that traverses an old Missouri Pacific (hence "MoPac") railroad line. The crushed stone pathway takes users between just north of Springfield, on the outskirts of Omaha south towards the Platte River.

About the Route

The northernmost endpoint for this route is located along W Schram Rd. The trail heads south from here and parallels S 144th St. for a while but slowly starts to move further away from the roadway as it continues to follow the railroad corridor right-of-way. 

The trail passes right through the heart of Springfield, which offers modest retail and dining options. The trail here also passes the Sarpy County Fairgrounds.

The remainder of the route passes through open farm country, with little development, as it meanders south. The southern endpoint of the trail is located just before reaching the Platte River, although trail users can choose to continue across the river.


At the trail's southern end, it continues as the Platte River Connection.

The MoPac Trail (Springfield) is part of the Great American Rail Trail, a 3,700-mile route from Washington to Washington D.C. 

Parking and Trail Access

The MoPac Trail (Springfield) runs between Schram Rd. (Springfield) and 20105 NE-31 (Springfield), with parking at the southern end.

Parking is also available at:

  • 1500 NE-31 (Springfield)

Please see TrailLink Map for all parking options and detailed directions.

MoPac Trail (Springfield) Reviews

The pipe after the Platte River bridge is bent.

The guard pipe on the south side of the Platte bridge is bent. This narrows the distance between the top of the Guard pipes. It wasn’t enough space for my bicycle handlebars to fit through and so I crashed. I know you don’t want motorized vehicles on the bridge, but the pipes are too tall and interfere with bicycle handlebars, especially when one of them is bent inward. Why can’t the top of the bars be about 10 inches lower? Thank you

MoPac - Springfield to South Bend

We read reviews from this trail that said fresh gravel, poop on the trail, poorly maintained, bridge not open -- but they were all old reviews so we took a chance. It is a beautiful trail, well maintained with no poop and the bridge over the South Platt River is excellent and open. This is a trail worth going to and there is very little traffic. Weather was great! Just do it!

Fall ride

Overall, the trail was in good shape. A few horse piles, as well as dog droppings, but not horrible. 1 tree branch down, but easily passed through.
I went both ways from the Louisville trailhead by the highway and it was a good ride with some fun bridges.

Getting Better

Was a little scared by previous reviews, but seems this trail is getting better. I would definitely not go on it with anything less than 700x38c. Still sections of deep gravel you can fishtail on. Hopefully the let some trees grow around this for shade and wind protection. Rode from Schram street to across the river--approx. 15 miles. Be prepared for wind.


No thank you

Yucky trial. We rode from Springfield out to South Bend. Deep gravel that was unsafe to ride on and lots of dog poop. We will not be back.

Highest hopes for this trsil

This trail let me down running from Springfield. It just ended after 4 miles. No signs, no nothing. Had me running on a dangerous highway with no direction. Never again.

No improvements

Just tried riding this trail again hoping there would be some improvement. Some areas aren’t terrible but some places are very difficult to ride through. Just north of Heron Bay there is huge crushed rock on the trail. Not even good for hybrid bikes! And so unsafe. It could be such a fun and popular trail.

old Maddog flyer

the trail is still a little too deep in gravel north of Springfield, but seems great to me on the stretch from the Sarpy County fair grounds Heron Bay at the Platte river. great ride, lots of shade and saw no dog poop.

Whats up with the monstrous size poop on the trail?

Rode this trail a couple days ago and spent more time dodging huge piles of poop on the trail than enjoying my ride. The trail over-all condition from Springfield down to the Lied bridge is in decline. Too much deep gravel (especially from the Platte River bridge down to the Lied bridge - and again WAY too much poop on the trail.

Ok south of Springfield, Too Deep North

The 3 mile section north of Springfield, the gravel is too deep, and it might be a little big. You can ride it with bigger mountain bike tires, but it's a hard pedal. Walking or running it would be fine though. The trail south of Springfield is in great shape, just the right amount of gravel, and the right size.

It used too be our favorite ride. Now it's too unsafe.

Last spring they put new gravel down on the trail. They used the wrong size and put it WAY to deep. The gravel is too big even for a gravel bike. If you rode it on a fat bike you could maybe enjoy it. I lost count of how many times my wheels fishtailed out from under me on our latest ride. We were lucky no one in our group crashed. We won;t be on that trail again until it is fixed. Luckily we have the Wabash.

Unsafe, too thick, no fun

We use to ride this trail a lot, but gave up on it after several rides on it this spring and summer, each time thinking that it was going to be in better condition. I even wrote emails and messaged the Papio-NRD a couple times telling them it was unsafe and way too thick to ride. It's Bad from the start on Hiway50/Schramm Road all the way to Springfield and then past Springfield in places. What was once our favorite is now our least favorite.

dangerous loose gravel

very disappointed in the care of this trail. its like riding in mud. they should take advice from the wabash trace trail caretakers. Not only is it to deep in 95% of the trail the rock they use is to large.
I gave up on riding back and chose to ride back on the roads. and I never like to ride with cars.

Very disappointed in maintenance

I rode this trail today for the first time this year, between Springfield-Louisville. The south part of the trail, south of Buffalo Road, is covered with limestone which was applied way too thick. This has turned a once good trail into a very unenjoyable ride unless you can plow your way through it. It needs to be bladed. Very sad condition.

Way too much gravel and too large of rocks

We live close to the trail and enjoy riding our bikes on it. This spring they put too thick of gravel on it and way too big of sized rock. You couldn't even ride a mountain bike on it.
So we hit the shoulder on the hiway and get yelled at by motorist driving by to use the trail.
We miss not being able to ride on the trail and are afraid it will be years before we will be able to again.
Very disappointed.

Springfield to Platte River Pedestrian bridge

Nice trail, some nice shaded/wooden areas. Very scenic around the Louisville to Platte River bridge area. Trail was very good shape. Some parts the gravel/rock was a little heavy to pedal through, but overall very well maintained. No washouts or washboard sections.

MoPac Trail route between Lincoln and Omaha

The development of this trail is progressing. Starting in Lincoln you can ride the West and East sections through Lincoln to Wabash, NE. Future plans call for a connection from Elmwood, NE, using Hwy 1 through Murdock, along County Road 330 to Hwy 66 and then connecting to the Platte River Bridge. From there you can now ride the Hwy 31 Trail to Hwy 50 where the rail corridor out of Louisville (not developed) takes you to Springfield, NE. The 'Springfield Gap' has been completed so the two sections of the trail are now connected. The last part, which has taken forever and is still not being constructed, is the connection to Chalco Rec Area via Schram Rd and 168th Street, will hopefully be done in my lifetime. To avoid this section, you must take the shoulders on Hwy 50 to Hwy 370 and then you can connect to Chalco Rec Area and the Omaha Metro Trail system. Its a beautiful ride thru the Platte River valley and surrounding areas.

Trails with variety! :)

Variety for the eyes

I like this trail. It's a two-fer!

Other reviews talk about the trail section north of Springfield, and the fact that this trail is a bit short, but they don’t have to be.

I started at the fairgrounds & Mopac trailhead in Springfield, and went south. It is a nice place to start, with sturdy concrete picnic tables (sort of kid-sized, but adult possible) and regular benches. If you start there, you will go just about 5.67 miles south till you hit the Platte river. You will go thru a very nice forested area which I was really hoping to see deer or something, but I did not. It’s very nice there. There is also a 2.5 mile straightaway that does indeed run along the road, but the road is not DIRECTLY next to the trail, so you don’t get too much noise or an overwhelming sense of traffic. There is slight ups’ and downs’, but not very much more than any other rail trail. Once you reach the river, Your just a few hundred feet from the southern trailhead, but if you stop here, you'd be at a restaurant called Heron Bay. I highly recommend you eat here! Yummy food, and a outdoor table with a nice river view if you want. If you decide to keep riding, just follow the trail down, under, and around the bridge for a close up of the Platte river itself. Following the trail back up, you will be at the southern trailhead in less than a minute or two.

But wait…there’s more!!!....

Most maps and sites show this as the complete trail, but it’s been lengthened. Once on site, I saw signs that say ‘Mopac trail’ going in the western direction from that southern trailhead, so I followed it. It took me another 4 miles on the same crushed limestone, right to the Platte River Connection. (look up that trail on this website). There were some steeper uphill’s and downhill’s on this section, but not too tough. The Platte River Connection is listed as a 1 mile trail, but when you get there, you have to ride back up from the river, so it’s more like 1.65 miles.

I don’t know the official current length of any ongoing trails, but if you ride from Springfield, to the southern trailhead at the Platte river, then go on to the Platte River Connection and ride it, then ride clear back to your car in Springfield, you will have gone about 21 miles. Not too shabby.
As I said before, this trail is listed as short, but if you want, you could park at the southern Mopac trailhead, ride north to the Springfield trailhead, then back down to your car, then out to the Platte River Connection, and back again. It’s still the same 21 miles that way, but this way will ensure you end up right near the Heron Bay restaurant and then your car after some yummy fried catfish.

All in all, I really liked this spot, because you get flat trails where you can get a bit of speed and exercise, and forestry areas, a cool long bridge at the Platte River Connection, and a good assortment of visuals for your eyes, and legs, without being too difficult, and in the end, awesome food! ¿

Decent trail but short

Good for a short trial run if you live around Omaha. Just over 6 miles from Springfield to Louisville. Plenty of places to park in Springfield around the fairgrounds. When you get to the south end at the river, you can cross the river on the Highway bridge which has a wide shoulder on each side, and get into the town of Louisville. The bridge does carry a lot of truck traffic so be careful. The trail was in decent condition in mid-April.

Nice trail

The northern end of the trail, between Gretna and Springfield, doesn't get as much traffic and so the gravel is looser but still in very good condition. The trail is not marked well as it goes through Springfield so just wonder through town and find the fairgrounds on the south side. Trail is at the SE corner of the fairgrounds. Gentle grade uphill from Springfield northward. The trail parallels Highway 50 which has wide shoulders for those who prefer hard surfaces though the highway sometimes gets fairly busy.

Excellent Trail

Covered with fine limestone, this end of the trail, between Springfield, NE and the Platte River, is well maintained. Very gentle grade uphill toward Springfield. Nice views along both sides of the trail and wildlife is present. We saw deer and racoons on the evening we rode. Much of the trail parallels Highway 50 which has wide shoulders so that is an option for those who don't like the gravel though the highway sometimes is fairly busy.

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