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Outdoor Files: National Plan Your Vacation Day

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Good morning. I was recently reading where about half of Americans fail to use their time off. That’s a shame because studies show that vacation time promotes better health, improves relationships, helps work performance.

What’s getting in the way? Maybe it’s just lack of planning. Today is actually National Plan Your Vacation Day. You don’t have to look far for a beautiful place to recreate and relax. Try a Nebraska State Park or Recreation Area. Check out the possibilities in our parks booklet from Game and Parks or find the information on our website OutdoorNebraska.org. A lot of our areas feature fishing waters, so you anglers can plan to visit lakes you’ve never cast in before.

Deer begin losing their antlers late winter. Now into March is a good time to grab the kids and comb the woods for antlers. Get them before squirrels, mice and other critters gnaw them down for nutrients. Greg Wagner of Game and Parks has a great blog on the subject. I encourage you to read it on line at nebraskalandmagazine.com Once there open up the how to tab.

A short note on deer. Taking into account the various deer seasons from September through mid January, total harvest…mule deer and white tailed deer, came in at nearly 59 thousand. (58,900). That makes 2017 number #11 on the record books. The record year was 88 thousand deer back in 2010. With the exception of some southern Nebraska areas, white tail buck harvest was up over 2016. And the Mule deer buck harvest statewide was 9800…a record…and 500 more than 2016.

And this last reminder that several of our parks feature beautiful cabins. Great places to gather friends and family for the super bowl. Also, from February 9-17, four parks are offering Valentines packages. Mahoney, Platte River, Lewis and Clark and Ponca. Find park contact information at OutdoorNebraska.org.

And to end things on a cute note…from my video vault, this little cottontail bunny at Toadstool Park, north of Crawford in northwest Nebraska. He was quite content to pose for the camera. It also helps that I don’t look like a coyote.

Until next week, I’m Ralph Wall reminding you time outdoors is time well spent.

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