Gems in the Valley: The Valley

Over the past two years we’ve blogged about two special places (here and here) in the Loup Valley that I call gems: special places of respite that offer the wary traveler (or local resident) a place to unplug. The Loup Valley is a series of braided rivers that flow from the northwest to the southeast, eventually emptying into the Platte River, then the Missouri and finally on to the Mississippi and out to the Gulf of Mexico. In Ord, the North Loup River flows directly through town on the eastern edge of the community. The Loup River system is called the “ladder of rivers” and offers a really nice introduction to the Nebraska Sandhills.

Red tail lights

Red Tail Lights - Ord @ Sunset

The white-sand bottomed river is one of my personal favorite slow meanders through life and offers a perfect example of why a former city dweller (me) loves living in the Loup Valley. The Valley itself is a microsm of the great things afforded by slowing down and living deliberately. I, along with my wife and two boys, have spent many hours on the river canoeing, swimming and just lazily loafing as the water flows past, as it has for thousands of years. The river’s flow is like the beauty of our area; subtle, expansive and quiet.

This installment of “Gems in the Valley” is our attempt at celebrating the valley itself. One of the first projects in 2012 is the official launch of our new travel website, Our hope is that travelers use the website to navigate the special wonders found in our area; our primary focus is not to tell you about our special place but to show you with photography. In 2012 our contracted professional photographer will be back to help us document our natural splendor. That pesky Nebraska weather threw a monkey wrench in our plans last year. That’s why we’re also holding a photographer’s online showcase that will give our local professional photographers a place to promote their work and also help us celebrate the natural wonder of the place we call home.

The new site is soft-launching as a beta version early as we work out the kinks and also update photography over the next year, which means it is a bit incomplete. We wanted our online readers to have the first look. So please be patient as things begin to roll-out over the next year. If you have time, please give us feedback on our new website. How do you like it?

Until then, Happy New Year! ~ Caleb

Mira Valley

The Mira Valley, south/southwest of Ord

2 Responses to “Gems in the Valley: The Valley”

  1. TIna Treffer Says:

    I love it!! Great concept!! I had been pondering a similar idea but with the thoughts of promoting our vast minimum maintenance roads that connect the heartlands small towns traveling via ATV’s and UTV’s. I ran the idea past Micheal Collins with the Nebraska Tour and Travel two years ago and he thought it was an awesome idea for promoting tourism in our area. In fact he was encouraging me to start mapping out such travel of trails for the enthusiast who enjoy taking the backroads.

    I’ve since left the Chamber Office, submerging my energy into my sign business. This has left me with no extra time to take on the task of pursuing the idea to the next level. Which was going to the county board members in Sherman, Valley and Custer to visit the idea of allowing the use of ATV’s and UTV’s on the minimum maintenance roads. They are the ones who have jurisdiction of these roads. My thought was since it is a public road and that if the riders where required to have a class O license and proof of liability insurance that would help keep the fees down for special insurance cost as it would be for one organization to run the program. I could go on and on about the plans and ideas that I had mapped out for this to work, but I’m sure it is more than you have time to consume in this one letter.

    Keep up the good work!!
    Your team of people are truly making a difference that is not going un notices!!


    Tina R. Treffer

  2. cpollard Says:

    Thank you! Let us know how its goes – we love hearing feedback on great ideas such as these!

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