Fort Collins to Lincoln Road Trip Guide


Fort Collins is one of the more popular cities in Denver, well known for its vibrancy, local delicacies, and boutiques. This city is also home to Colorado State University. Besides these, you cannot run out of natural beauties to behold here, ranging from snow-capped mountains to clear rivers and picturesque lakes, all of which make time spent outdoors here memorable. So, if you’re looking to have fun, you’re in the right place as plenty of recreational opportunities, sightseeing locations, and music and nightlife activities here are like no other.

What’s more, this city is the Craft Beer Capital of Colorado. Families, buddies, work colleagues, couples, individual tourists - everyone basically will find something exciting to do here. Some of the popular activities enjoyed here include hiking and biking, horseback riding, birdwatching, and golfing.

The perfect way to cap your excitement here is to set out on an RV road trip to Lincoln, Nebraska, an equally vibrant city that lies 463 miles east. Both the journey and the destination are full of unforgettable aspects. As soon as you try to recover from the fun at your previous stop, you’re already overwhelmed by what’s ahead. Rest assured, you’re in for a ride!

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Max RV length
Max trailer Length
Road trip length: 2-3 days
Recommend rig: any
audience: all

Point of Interest

Pawnee National Grassland

Your first stopover when you leave Fort Collins for Lincoln lies just 35 miles east of the city. The 301 square mile Pawnee National Grassland is a national preserve that offers lots of recreational opportunities, even though there aren’t many developed facilities in the park.

Known internationally as a birding area, you should bring out your camera and binoculars to view the various bird species that roam this area – Colorado State Bird, lark bunting, burrowing owl, and more. Besides birdwatching, hiking, picnicking, stargazing, and horseback riding are other popular ways to stay active here. You will come across wildlife too, so prepare to see mule deer, pronghorn, coyote, prairie dogs, and others. Spring is a particularly beautiful time to visit as the wildflowers are such a sight to behold.

Camping areas for RVs and trailers are provided and can be reserved in advance. Note that the maximum spur length is 35 feet.

McConaughy Lake

Set out from Pawnee National Grassland and head for your first recreation destination in Nebraska. Located north of Ogallala, McConaughy Lake is the biggest lake in the state and also doubles as the largest reservoir too. Covering more than 55 square miles, this lake is popularly referred to as Big Mac. Here, you will be mesmerized by the natural white sand beaches that will greet you as soon as you arrive.

Wondering how you will have fun here? You can choose whatever it is that interests you - be it fishing, boating, sailing, swimming, or skiing. Besides, scuba divers, picnickers, hunters, and nature viewing enthusiasts call this place home. In fall, this site is a fantastic waterfowl hunting space. Visit in winter for iceboating.

When you’re done for the day, retire to any of the 226 reservable campsites at the McConaughy Lake State Recreation Area equipped with full and partial RV hookups.

Pony Express Station and Museum

It’s time to go back in time and that’s what the Pony Express Station and Museum in Gothenburg will offer you. This facility, which has been a tourist attraction since the 1950s, is open to all and offers admission on a free basis to guests and tourists. Located in an arboretum, you have the opportunity to walk your dog in the facility (if you have your pet) or let your children have fun in the kid’s playground.

As soon as you arrive here, you’ll be able to visit the tiny log cabin that presents lots of antiques and materials that tell the story of the Pony Express riders. If you’re an equestrian, or love horses, you’ll likely find this museum even more satisfying.

When you’re done, a short drive north will bring you to Lake Helen Recreation Area where you can enjoy outdoor recreation and Lafayette Park where you can spend the night.

Fort Kearny State Recreation Area

Continue your drive east from Gothenburg till you arrive at Fort Kearny State Recreation Area in the Kearny Area of Nebraska. This state park welcomes you to a site that’s dotted with different sandpit lakes offering you scenic views of the waterfront. If your visit is in spring, you’ll find that sandhill cranes and waterfowl abound in the central Platte River valley in this region.

As soon as you settle in, feel free to bring out your fishing gear so you can fish in eight sandpit lakes. If swimming is what interests you, you can visit the beach here for that. Hikers can stroll to the nearby Fort Kearny State Historical Park to explore scenic nature trails.

Both primitive and modern camping opportunities are available here, with facilities such as dump stations, restrooms, and showers, electric RV sites, picnic tables, and grills, as well as an ADA accessible fishing pier.

Pawnee State Recreation Area

Your last stop before you get into the heart of Lincoln City is this recreation area located on the outskirts of the metropolis. Pawnee State Recreation Area, which features the second largest lake in the entire Salt Lake Valley, is a popular destination for water-based fun activities. It’s the perfect place to wrap up this trip that has taken you through various attractions and offered you plenty of sights to see.

The land areas in the park offer opportunities to hike, bike, watch birds and wildlife and also hunt for waterfowl, deer, as well as other upland and small game. If your interest is the lake, then feel free to boat or angle for walleye, northern pike, bluegill, catfish, and largemouth bass.

Modern camping facilities are provided with electric RV hookups, showers, and other amenities. All 31 campsites in the SRA are available by reservation.


Arrive at the heart of Lincoln and begin your tour of the city by visiting the Nebraska State Capitol, a magnificent structure completed in 1932. Other equally fascinating places to visit include the Great Plains Art Museum featuring art and exhibits dedicated to the history of the Great Plains; Pioneers Park Nature Center; Hamann Rose Garden; and Sunken Gardens.

Rest assured, this city has what it takes to surpass your expectations and bring your already remarkable RV road trip experience to an amazing end.

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