Pawnee State Recreation Area features 2,544 acres, 740 of which are water acres. Diverse recreation opportunities on this area draw anglers, boaters, hikers, hunters, shutterbugs and anyone else who enjoys the out-of-doors.
Pawnee State Recreation Area is a popular spot with anglers. White bass, walleye, largemouth bass, bluegill and two kinds of catfish, among others, can all be found in the lake. Pawnee also has a fish cleaning station.
For more information on fishing opportunities here and at parks across the state, visit the interactive public fishing areas map. This map provides detailed information on available species, regulations, public boat ramps, fish cleaning stations and ADA-accessible boat ramps and docks, among other features in reservoirs, lakes, streams and rivers statewide. Lake contour maps are available for some lakes, as well.
All types of boats are welcome at Pawnee SRA. The lake offers three ramps and two docks.
Pawnee SRA has two swimming beaches. No lifeguards are on duty.
Pawnee has six miles of trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding.
Pawnee’s close proximity to Lincoln makes it a popular day-use spot. The area has 53 picnic tables, 225 grills and two shelters, one of which is available for rental.
Hunting is permitted in season beginning the first Tuesday after Labor Day. Hunters will find abundant small game, waterfowl and whitetail deer.
Pawnee State Recreation Area offers a shotgun-only shooting range (so no pellet guns, rifles, handguns, etc.) The range is open from sunrise to sunset. There is no additional fee. Park entry permit required.
Pawnee SRA offers campers Electric Plus, Electric, Basic, and Equestrian Basic campsites.
The area offers 68 all-weather camping pads with 20-, 30- and 50-amp electrical hookups, as well as 34 camping pads without electricity and 97 non-pad sites without electricity. The shady campground offers water, showers and modern restrooms. A dump and fill station is available at the area.
Reservations for campsites are available for half of the campsites in Lakeview Campground. All other camping is first-come, first-served and campers register their nightly camping fees in a raised, locked box called an Iron Ranger. Self-service envelopes are provided at each Iron Ranger station. Check or cash only. Iron Rangers are generally located near the park entrance or in the campground area. On-site camping informational signs are provided to help guide campers with the self-registration process.
A park entry permit is required and may be purchased at the park, statewide Game and Parks offices and permit vendors or in advance of your arrival online. Daily permits are $6 for residents and $12 for non-residents.