- Find a Trail
- My TrailLink
- Explore Trails
- About Us
- Get Involved
The Platte River Connection is a short, but critical, route that will one day link the vast trail systems of the two most populous Nebraskan cities, Lincoln and Omaha. The trail's centerpiece is the 1,714-foot-long Lied Platte River Bridge, a converted Rock Island Railroad trestle that offers picturesque views of the water.
On the south side of the Platte River, the trail provides a tree-lined entrance to the rural community of South Bend. On the north side of the river, the trail connects to Springfield's MoPac Trail.
Notice of trail closure: As of March 2019, the Leid Bridge is closed to all users due to extensive damage from flooding. Check the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District website for updates.
Parking for the Platte River Connection is available on both sides of the river. On the south bank, park at the trailhead on 328th Street (0.5 mile south of South Bend). On the north bank, park at the parking lot just off State Route 31.
We walked path today. Beautiful day for a walk. His path is not “one mile” as advertised. That’s a little misleading. Loved all the benches for resting if necessary. We will be back! ¿¿
Starting at the Platte River Connection trailhead (next to the road), you first ride slightly downhill to the river. This section is more rough than your standard crushed limestone, but still not too bad.
You will pass a ‘river community’ with posted signs that read “Private Property”, but that is for the grassy areas, not the trail. The trail you will be on is fine…it leads to the bridge you’re there to see.
Once you get to the bridge it is very open and wide, and pretty cool. It has several covered viewing areas with benches, some of which have placards to read about the area.
This trail is not a loop… after visiting the bridge you must then head back up to the trailhead. Although it is listed as a ‘1 mile’ trail, you will be going about 1.65 miles total, from the trail head/parking lot, to the far end of the long bridge, then back to your car.
This spot is a two-fer. The same trailhead that is for the Platte River Connection now also is for the Mopac (see that trail on this website also)
The Mopac has been lengthened… from this trail, all the way to a few miles north of Springfield, so you could ride about 10.5 miles starting from here if you wanted to. 13 or so if you keep going thru Springfield and end up in a random spot closer to Omaha.
It is all crushed limestone and actual trail…not a road/combo trail (up to Springfield anyway – I didn’t go any further so don’t know about that section).
If you do ride the Mopac trail, which starts right there in the same parking lot, it will take you 4 miles (mostly within fairly close proximity of the road) to the southern Mopac trailhead at the Platte river. Either turn around there and ride back, for a total of just about 9.76 miles, or if you go another couple hundred feet, you will pass 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.
You can turn around now, or keep heading north on the Mopac. If you keep riding north on the Mopac, you will ride almost another 5.67 miles to the Springfield trailhead. At this point, you will need to get back to your car back at the Platte River Connection trailhead, and once you’ve done that, you will have gone a total of 21 miles.
If you only ride the Platte River Connection, you will enjoy it, it is nice all on its own. If you also ride the Mopac, you can get a bit of speed and exercise, and forestry areas, and a good assortment of visuals for your eyes, and legs, without being too difficult, and turn a 1 miler into a 21 miler pretty nicely, all from the same parking spot.
I'm giving Platte River Connection a 5 star rating, based on its own merits...not based on its length. It is short, on its own, yes, but it has a nice parking spot trailhead, a fairly easy trail to the bridge, and once your at the bridge, you'll be there a while and there's lots to see...for a bridge. I think it deserves 5 stars for what it has to offer, in its short length.
Took my grandson, (a new bike rider) on this small trail. He really enjoyed riding over the Platte river and then we went into the community on the south side of the Platte and rode thru the neighborhood. It was very quiet and great for kids to ride without it being a busy area. The only negative was the gravel getting to the bridge, part of the trail had deep gravel that you had to be careful not to take a spill otherwise had a great time.
This trail does not have any events yet.
Be the first to add one!
The MoPac Trail in Springfield is an integral component of what is planned to be a more than 50-mile recreational trail between Omaha and Lincoln,...
The MoPac Trail follows the former Missouri Pacific Railroad's Omaha Belt Line (hence "MoPac"). This eastern segment of the rail corridor offers a...
The Wehrspann Lake Trail loops around its namesake reservoir in the Chalco Hills Recreation Area on the southwestern outskirts of Omaha. There are...
The Prairie Queen Recreation Area offers a beautiful outdoor space for residents of Papillion, which lies southeast of Omaha. Looping around the lake...
This trail is an 8-mile long winding pathway stretching from north to south along 144th Street (State Route 50). It is an important route for both...
The Walnut Creek Lake Recreation Area is a natural gem in Papillion, a southwestern suburb of Omaha. The 450-acre park features a paved multiuse...
The West Papio Trail offers nearly 23 miles of paved trail in the western Omaha metro region. The pathway begins just west of S. 36th Street in...
The Zorinsky Lake Trail offers a pleasant excursion on the western outskirts of Omaha. The paved pathway encircles a 255-acre lake, offering beautiful...
Vascilating between natural and suburban surroundings in the outskirts of Bellevue, the Marv Holubar Trail offers an important off-road connection...
The Keystone Trail is a popular urban-to-rural corridor for commuters and recreationalists of all stripes: college students, business professionals,...
Omaha's Big Papio Trail follows the route of Big Papillion Creek from southern Omaha to the city's northwestern corner. The paved trail begins along...
The Bellevue Loop Trail is actually the southern extension of the Keystone Trail, and it is occasionally referred to simply as part of the longer...
TrailLink is a free service provided by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (a non-profit) and we need your support!