2016 Crane Migration Tours
Reservations accepted after January 4, 2016.
» Group Viewing Blind Tours
(2.5 hours, $25 + tax/person)
A trained guide will accompany you to one of our prime viewing blinds on the Platte River. Blind tours are offered in the early morning, while the cranes are roosting on the river, and also in the evening, when the birds are returning to the river to roost for the night.
Each tour lasts approximately 2.5 hours, which includes a presentation on the Great Sandhill Crane Migration at the Crane Trust Nature & Visitor Center before you depart for the blind. Visitors will need to be able to walk about ten minutes over uneven terrain to reach the blind. Children must be 12 and up and accompanied by an adult.
March 1-March 12 5:00-7:30 a.m.
March 13-April 3 6:00-8:30 a.m.
March 1-March 12 5:00-7:30 p.m.
March 13-April 3 6:00-8:30 p.m.
Ending times are approximate.
» Footbridge Evening Tours
(2 hours, $15 + tax/person)
After a presentation on the Great Sandhill Crane Migration, you’ll accompany your guide to our private footbridge over the Platte River. From there you’ll enjoy a 360-degree open-air view of large crane flocks crisscrossing the sky above as they travel to roost for the night, along with the sights and sounds of other migratory birds and wildlife.
You’ll also watch as the cranes gather on the grassland prairie before lifting over the cottonwood trees to roost on the river channel downstream from your vantage point on the bridge. Bridge tours last two hours. Visitors are free to depart when they wish but may not return to the bridge afterward. Children must be 12 and up and accompanied by an adult.
Friday through Sunday evening only:
March 18-March 27 6:00p.m.
» Private Overnight Photo/Viewing Blinds
(Overnight, $220 + tax/blind)
These special overnight photo/viewing blinds are designed for the serious nature enthusiast seeking the ultimate viewing and photo experience on the Platte—morning and evening!
Because the blinds are placed in extreme proximity to the sandhill crane roosts on the river, you will overnight in the small 4’x8’x5.5’ blind and must remain inside so as not to disturb the birds from their roost. What you give up in creature comforts you’ll more than make up for in spectacular morning and evening views. Your guide will drop you off in the late afternoon and pick you up the next morning after the cranes have left the river. Maximum Occupancy: 2 people.
March 7-April 3
» VIP Crane Viewing Experience
Provides Up Close Adventure
The arrival of the cranes on Nebraska’s Platte River—and the millions of other migratory birds that visit each spring—is one of the greatest wildlife spectacles on the continent. Peak viewing times occur at dawn and sunset, meaning there is an extremely short and exclusive window to experience this awe-inspiring scene.
Take your crane viewing experience to the next level by booking a VIP stay at The Crane Trust’s new Legacy Cabins. These new cabins greatly enhance the experience for our private guests and friends, featuring four fully furnished private bedrooms, each with its own private bathroom. The cabin’s patio rests up against the vast prairie where the Crane Trust’s bison herd roams.
The guided crane viewing experience will take you to the largest Sandhill Crane roost on the river, viewable from the Crane Trust’s private Pietrok Family VIP Blind. Guests are in this heated blind with experts who provide valuable insights into the science and the mystery of the crane migration and Platte ecosystem. This blind is specially designed to provide spectacular vistas and provide Friends of the Trust a comfortable and warm viewing experience.
This one-of-a-kind adventure on rare Crane Trust lands can’t be duplicated anywhere else. The VIP Crane Viewing Experience is geared for groups of 4 to 8 couples (or 8 to 16 individuals). It is a memorable way to spend time with friends, family, colleagues or clients while enjoying the natural wonder of the crane migration at the Crane Trust. If you’re interested in more information about booking a VIP Crane Viewing Experience at the Crane Trust, please contact Sandy Douglas at email@example.com or 402-651-7033.
» Important Rules & Guidelines
Please read the following rules and guidelines carefully to prepare for your Great Sandhill Crane Migration adventure:
- Dress warmly and in layers. Early-spring mornings and evenings in Nebraska can be unpredictable and chilly. Blinds are unheated. Bring the warmest boots, coat, gloves and hat you have. Dress for 20 degrees below air temperature. Rain gear may be desirable in wet weather.
- No flashlights or flash photography.
- Bring cameras, binoculars or video equipment. Tripods are allowed.
- Only registered tour members will be allowed into the display room for the pre-tour presentation.
- Cancellations more than 7 days prior to the scheduled tour will receive a refund less 10% for administrative costs. Cancellations between 49 hours and 168 hours prior will receive a 50% refund. No refunds for cancellations within the last 48 hours prior to your tour time unless the tour is cancelled by the Crane Trust. The Crane Trust will cancel tours if Interstate 80 is closed anywhere between Lincoln and North Platte due to bad weather. In the event of a closure, we will attempt to reach you via email and by cell phone. In the event that the Crane Trust cancels a tour, you will receive a full refund.
All reservations are made online: book here!
Submit any reservation inquiries or issues via our contact form. Be sure to leave a call back number and email address, along with the date of tour and time in the comments section.