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White Catfish Camp

White Catfish Camp


Open daily, 8am to 5pm
$11 per adult / $10 per senior (62+) / $8 per child (2-17) / Free for children under age 2 / Free for members (sales tax included)
lat: 41.1797528 long: -95.9178333

On July 22, 1804, the expedition made camp at a site approximately ten miles upstream of the Platte confluence, on the east side of the Missouri River. One of the men caught what was likely a channel catfish, which inspired the encampment’s name – White Catfish Camp. They stayed until July 26, replenishing food, refitting equipment, and attempting to contact the Otoe and Pawnee tribes. Clark wrote, “This being a good Situation and much nearer the Otteaus town than the Mouth of the Platt, we concluded to delay at this place a few days and Send for Some of the Chiefs of that nation to let them Know of the Change of Govern­ment, The wishes of our Government to Cultivate friendship with them, the Objects of our journey and to present them with a flag and Some Small presents.” A party sent overland located an Otoe village near the confluence of the Elkhorn and Platte rivers but found it empty. The expedition again stayed at this camp during the return journey on September 8, 1806.

The exact location of White Catfish Camp is unknown. Although Lewis and Clark camped on what is now the Iowa side of Missouri, the site is now most likely submerged by the river channel. The Iowa side of the river is privately owned but on the Nebraska side Fontenelle Forest (a National Natural Landmark) pro­vides public access via an excellent system of hiking trails that include Lewis and Clark interpretive wayside exhibits.

Nearby Attractions

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Nearby Trails

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Lewis & Clark NPS Headquarter Courtyard

lat: 41.265454 long: -95.924142
Lewis & Clark NPS Headquarters

lat: 41.2649282 long: -95.9245674
Lewis & Clark Indigenous Garden

lat: 41.265 long: -95.92407
Fort Atkinson

lat: 41.4510229 long: -96.0128221
Brownville State Access

lat: 40.39562 long: -95.65073
Decatur IA

lat: 42.0037 long: -96.24364
Bob Kerry Bridge

lat: 41.26556 long: -95.92361
Niobrara State Park to Running Water Landing

lat: 42.7330245 long: -98.4151844
Fort Calhoun to Papillion Creek

lat: 41.44559 long: -95.92063
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