Free Crane Migration Viewing Sites

February 28, 2022

The Richard Plautz Crane Viewing site in Gibbon is a busy place during spring crane migration and new upgrades now provide better accessibility. Located at the intersection of Elm Island and Lowell roads, the site has two elevated wooden viewing decks, concrete walking trail and a parking lot to provide a safe area for the public to view the Sandhill and Whooping cranes as they migrate through Nebraska.

The Alda Crane Viewing site was recently awarded $250,000 from the RTP to pave the recreational trail and three gravel parking lots with concrete to make the area fully ADA accessible. The wooden viewing platform will also be replaced. CPNRD has requested $75,000 from the Nebraska Environmental Trust Fund for non-trail related improvements. Learn more about Central Platte NRD’s crane viewing sites by calling (308) 385-6282 or visiting

Grants received for the Gibbon site included $259,500 from the Recreational Trails Program (RTP) administered by the Nebraska Game & Parks Commission with CPNRD contributing a 20% match; and $50,000 from the Nebraska Environmental Trust for repairs on the streambank near the viewing decks.
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