Chimney Rock National Historic Site

 

Feel the awe and curiosity the pioneers experienced when they saw the most famous landmark on the Oregon, California, and Mormon Trails.

 

Designated as a National Historic Site on August 9, 1956, Chimney Rock is maintained and operated by the Nebraska State Historical Society.  

 

See museum exhibits, "pack your wagon" with provisions for the trek west, and learn more about the great migration in a fascinating video at the Ethel and Christopher J. Abbott Visitor Center. Books on trail history, educational games for kids, and unique craft items from the Landmark Store let you take “a piece of the rock” on your journey.  

Plan your visit to Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock and a building

Visitor Hours: 9am - 5pm daily

Open Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day

Closed all other state holidays and Easter

Inside of Chimney Rock museum

$3 for adults; free for children (18 and under) and school groups

Free admission for NSHS members

$2 for National Park Service Pass Card holders

Adult groups of 20 or more: $2 per person 

Tours offered year round. 

Group rates available. 

Please call ahead to make reservations. 

308-586-2581 

Chimney Rock National Historic Site is located 1.5 miles south of Highway 92 on Chimney Rock Road

Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock National Historic Site

Box F 

Bayard, NE 69334-0680 

308-586-2581

loren.pospisil@nebraska.gov

Black and white photo of Chimney Rock

How tall is Chimney Rock

Today, Chimney Rock is estimated be 325 feet from tip to base and 120 feet for the spire. Over the years, many people have tried to measure the Rock.

  • 1830: Warren Angus Ferris offered the first known estimate of Chimney Rock, "It is half a mile in circumference at the base and rises to the height of three hundred feet. 
  • 1830: Captain Benjamin Bonneville wrote, "From the summit shoots up a shaft or column, about one hundred and twenty feet in height, from which it derives its name." 
  • 1849: Forty-niner David Cosad used the centuries-old method of measuring his shadow against the rock's to come up with a figure of 360 feet from the base to the top. 
  • 1864: Captain Eugene Ware wrote, "We estimated the height of the chimney itself to be eighty-five feet.  Elston said that it was the belief of the trappers that during the last fifteen years it had crumbled down from the top about thirty-five feet."
  • 1895: The United States Geological Survey, using scientific instruments, calculated the elevation

Learn more about Chimney Rock
Something for Kids! Nebraska TrailBlazer No. 3, Oregon Trail

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