By Jacki Wood

Editor’s note: this is the fifth in a series of day trip ideas you can plan for your children or grandchildren.

TripCave1aLooking for an outdoor adventure surrounded by beautiful fall foliage? Indian Cave State Park, located on 3,052 acres along the Missouri River between Brownville and Falls City, NE, might be a perfect choice.

The park is named for the large sandstone cave which features Native American petroglyphs and has 22 miles of scenic trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding as well as fishing, boating, canoeing or kayaking.

TripCave3Wrangler-guided horseback trail rides are available for those ages six and older on weekends during the fall.

There’s also plenty of wildlife to view including deer, turkey, woodchuck, beaver, raccoon and many species of birds, such as barred owls and whippoorwills. Birding tours and naturalist programs are held year-round.

If you decide you’d like to make a weekend out of your trip, the park provides RV, primitive and equestrian camping. Adirondack shelters are also located periodically along the trails.

TripCave4History comes alive in the ghost town of St. Derion in the park and features demonstrations on making candles, lye soap and brooms. Period actors, including a blacksmith, provide re-enactments. There is also a restored schoolhouse and general store.

Events are offered throughout the year.

One of those is Haunted Hollow held each October and includes haunted hayrack rides, a spooky campground decorating contest, pumpkin carving, games, crafts and other family-friendly activities.

This year, Haunted Hollow is October 8, 14, 15, 21 and 22. Haunted hayrack rides are $8 for adults, $6 for ages 4-12 and free for ages three and under. Concessions are available and advance tickets are required by phone or walk-in.

The Halloween Decorating Contest at the RV Campground will be October 8, 15 and 22.

A Jack-O-Lantern Junk and Craft Market will be held from 9 am to 4 pm, Saturday, October 15 in conjunction with Haunted Hollow. Trick-or-Treating will be from 2 to 3:30 pm.

Indian Cave State Park is located at 65296 720 Road, Shubert, NE.

For more information, call 402.883.2575 or visit

If you’re looking to do more in the area, historic Brownville is just up the road and offers museums, unique shopping, art galleries, a winery, sightseeing cruises, the Brownville Concert Series and more.

Call 402.825.6841 or visit