Branched Oak State Recreation Area features the largest lake in eastern Nebraska and has long been a popular spot for fishing, boating and camping. Approximately 1,800 acres of water, along with well-maintained modern and primitive campsites, two swimming beaches, hiking trails and an equestrian campground draw visitors from near and far. A marina offers fuel, bait, boat rental, concessions and a bar and grill.
Branched Oak Lake offers great fishing opportunities and is a popular spot with anglers. Available species include blue catfish, bluegill, common carp, channel catfish, crappie, flathead catfish, freshwater drum, largemouth bass, striped bass, walleye, white perch and wiper. There’s a daily bag limit of one walleye, 22 inches or longer, and there’s a 10-inch minimum length limit for crappie. Striped bass, white bass, wiper and flathead catfish are catch-and-release. A wheelchair-accessible deck is available near the marina, and fish cleaning stations are located at areas 5 and 11.
Branched Oak Lake is open to all types of boating. Nine ramps and 49 docks are available. The marina sells fuel and also offers boat rental.
Branched Oak features two swimming beaches. There are no lifeguards on duty at either
The marina sells bait, firewood and fuel, among other amenities, and also offers boat rental and a bar/grill.
The park offers seven miles of hiking trails, six miles of mountain bike trails and three miles of horse trails.
Branched Oak SRA offers 41 picnic shelters, three of which are reservable. One reservable shelter has electricity and accommodates up to 60 people. The park also offers 625 picnic tables and 588 grills.
Branched Oak also offers archery, horseshoe pits and a nationally recognized dog trial area. It’s also a popular spot for wildlife viewing, particularly in the spring when many visitors stop by to view bald eagles.
Branched Oak offers 305 camping pads with 30- and 50-amp electrical hookups, as well as 28 camping pads without electricity. The lake has five shower houses, modern restrooms, dump stations and playground equipment.
The area offers 187 non-pad sites without electricity. Only one camping unit is allowed per site, though an extra tent is allowed for dependent children only.
Visitors can camp with their horses in one area of the park. This area offers 15 pull-through sites with electrical hookups reservable at the park office only, as well as 14 corrals. Hand-pump drinking water, toilets and fire rings are available in the equestrian camping area.