In the Wild with Greg Wagner


A family friend, Josh Meyer, hikes the remote sandhills of Cherry County.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I am extremely fond of the Nebraska sandhills area. I try to make a trip there at least once or twice a year, if not more. If you’ve never experienced the sandhills of Nebraska, you’re really missing out! Among its scenic natural resource treasures is the 115, 703-acre Samuel R. McKelvie National Forest southwest of Valentine. 

McKelvie is a combination of rich prairie grasslands and pine forest "islands."

   About the size of West Virginia, this eco-region contains distinct grass communities that can survive in sandy soil, particularly sand bluestem communities. 


You’ll note that there are also rivers plus many natural lakes and marshes that can be found in the sandhills, all fed by the massive underground Ogallala Aquifer. 

The Upper Snake River in Cherry County southeast of Merriman, NE.

  The grasslands and these waters provide important habitat for many species wildlife. In places, the rivers can be tough to traverse by canoe or kayak, but that’s the allure of them. 

A canoe thrill and spill on the Upper Snake River.

  Some of the finest people you’ll ever meet live in the Nebraska sandhills. 

Rancher Chris Abbott of rural Gordon prepares to grill his tasty grass-fed beef for us.

 Canoe trip-camping along one of these isolated sandhills rivers is a priceless outdoor experience! 

Snake River canoe-camp with the Wagner wild bunch.

Hope to see you out there, enjoying a Nebraska sandhills outdoor vacation! Oh, almost forgot, you can get all sorts of info on planning a Nebraska sandhills vacation by clicking the Nebraska Travel and Tourism’s website here:


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