Recreation Areas

Recreation Areas

As part of its mission to conserve and protect natural resources, the Upper Big Blue NRD has been involved in several large-scale dam and reservoir projects since 1983. These multi-purpose projects are designed for flood and erosion control, groundwater recharge, and used in progressive groundwater research.

As a result, the additional benefit of these projects is the opportunity for outdoor recreation. The NRD has developed five sites: Overland Trails Recreation Area (York), Oxbow Trail Recreation Area (Ulysses), Smith Creek Recreation Area (Utica), Pioneer Trails Recreation Area (Aurora), and the Bruce L. Anderson Recreation Area at Recharge Lake & Recharge Lake Archery Range (York).

These sites also provide habitat for wildlife. Area residents can enjoy activities, such as camping, fishing, boating, hiking, as well as winter sports such as skiing, sledding, tobogganing, snowshoeing, snowmobile riding, and ice skating.

Pioneer Trails & Recharge Lake ONLY Fees:  Tent camping = $5/night;  RV camping = $15/night. These sites are closed to RV and tent camping for the winter as of October 28, 2019. They will reopen in spring 2020.

Full details about the parks including recreation opportunities can be found in this publication.