The Cyclist’s Guide to Omaha | The Best Bike Shops, Trails and Rental Options

May 8, 2018Add a CommentPosted By

Whether commuting or seeking recreational options, cyclists in the Omaha area don’t have to look very far to find an incredible route. There are more than 120 miles of paved trails around town, and many of these connect to even more trails leading outside of the Omaha city limits! Needless to say, there are plenty of options when it comes to two-wheel traveling, and a gauntlet of well-stocked shops and repair companies to get you on the road quickly.

In honor of National Bike Month, we decided to compile a complete guide to cycling in Omaha, including the best trails, shops and even post-ride libations. Enjoy!

 

Jump ahead:

Omaha Bike Trails | Omaha Bike Rentals + Shops | Post-Ride Libations

Cyclist

Omaha Bike Trails

The Iowa Riverfront Trail

Length: 6.5 miles
Parking: Near the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge, Tom Hanafan River’s Edge Park or the Western Historic Trails Center

Cross over the Missouri River on Bob the Bridge to enjoy a scenic ride on the Iowa side. From Tom Hanafan River’s Edge park, you can work your way south all the way to the Western Historic Trails Center, or conversely, you could start at the center and end up at the park. A small push further north will bring you to the Lewis & Clark Monument — a very rewarding finish line.

 

Omaha Riverfront Trail (Northern Section)

Length: 15.5 miles
Parking: Kiwanis Park

This trail offers fantastic views of the Mormon Bridge over the Missouri River, several parks, wetlands and the bluffs, and is therefore a fantastic option for a scenic afternoon ride! It’s an out-and-back trail with several hills for easy elevation gain. You can go as far as you like depending on the time you have! You’ll go through N.P. Dodge Park, which offers ball fields, a marina, playgrounds, a pavilion, opportunities for camping, and restrooms and water facilities, and then you’ll have the option to continue onward to the Washington County Line and Boyer Chute National Wildlife Refuge.

 

The 144th Street Trail

Length: 10.2 miles
Parking: Standing Bear Lake, Millard North High School or Wehrspann Lake

144th Street

Photo courtesy of AllTrails

This out-and-back street-side trail runs along 144th Street and connects Standing Bear, Zorinsky and Wehrspann Lakes through a series of charming residential neighborhoods. It’s a great route for both recreation and morning commutes, and an easy way to reach the water’s edge from your home if you live in the area.

 

The Big Papio Trail

Length: 18.7 Miles
Parking: Several parking options along the route include Hefflinger Park, Crosskey Villages Park, One Pacific Place Park, Cancer Survivors Park, and Seymour Smith Park

For a leisurely ride through some of Omaha’s most scenic parks, you can’t do better than The Big Papio Trail. This winding route connects several retail and business corridors, even offering trailside dining and shopping at One Pacific Place. Stop along the route to play a round of disc golf at Seymour Smith Park, and take in the views at the Happy Hollow Club.

 

The Keystone Trail

Length: 10.5 miles
Parking: 48th Street and Cornhusker Road

The Keystone Trail is the longest continuous trail in the metro area, passing by Aksarben Village and Roberts Skate Park. The flat and paved nature of the route makes it perfect for beginner cyclists as well as those looking for a smooth and speedy ride. You can access the trail from all major streets, or start at the beginning at 48th Street and Cornhusker Road.

 

Lake Manawa Trail

Length: 7.5 Miles
Parking: The Iowa West Trailhead Park

Lake Manawa State Park is an ideal place to spend warm days, as it provides opportunities for picnics, boating, swimming and soaking in the sunshine. You can also enjoy a leisurely bike ride on the paved trail winding around the lake. And since the trail also connects to the Veterans Memorial Trail, the Western Historic Trails Center Link, the Council Bluffs trail system and the Wabash Trace, your opportunities to continue the ride are endless. The cold water of Lake Manawa will be there to cool you off when you return!

 

The Zorinsky Lake Trail

Length: 7.8 Miles
Parking: Zorinsky Lake Park (Also options on 156th or 168th Streets)

Zorinsky Lake

Photo courtesy of AllTrails

Zorinsky Lake is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, offering the chance to explore the prairie and catch glimpses of native wildlife (including eagles!). You can also rent paddle boards or boats and head out on the lake, or bike around the area. The trail meanders around the lake in a figure eight pattern, so you can opt to ride one loop, the other, or both.

 

Omaha Bike Rentals & Shops

Heartland B-Cycle

35 stations across Omaha

Heartland B-Cycle is our local bike sharing program, offering 35 stations around town and nearly 200 bikes in total. Pick up a bike from your station of choice, explore the nearby bike paths or parks, and return the bike at any other station in Omaha. You can find a map of the local stations on their website here.

 

Greenstreet Cycles

2452 Harney Street, Omaha AND 233 S Washington Street, Papillion

Greenstreet

Photo courtesy of Greenstreet Cycles

Nestled on Harney Street in Midtown, Greenstreet Cycles is your one-stop-shop for everything bike related. Pick up a cup of house-roasted joe at the Coffee Lab, and then peruse the impressive selection of bikes for sale at Greenstreet (including pre-owned and rental options). The staff is incredibly friendly and happy to provide recommendations, or even give you a bike fitting (by appointment). Finally — the repair services here are reasonably priced and second to none. Is there anything Greenstreet Cycles can’t do? The answer is “no.”

The Bike Rack

14510 Eagle Run Drive, Omaha

The Bike Rack boasts the largest bike selection in Nebraska, including electric bicycles! But though it’s a big shop, the staff does not skimp on service. Everyone working in the store is an experienced cyclist, and is pleased to help customers with annual maintenance, emergency repairs and bike fitting sessions. If you’re just looking for something for the day, call and reserve a rental bike hassle-free.

 

Omaha Bicycle Co.

6015 Maple Street, Omaha

Omaha Bicycle Co

Photo courtesy of Omaha Bicycle Co.

Omaha Bicycle Co. is not just a repair shop — it’s a local gem. Nestled in the heart of the Benson neighborhood, the beloved shop provides new bikes for sale, repairs, routine tune-ups, custom bikes and fit services, and an attached coffee and tea shop in the front with an inviting deck with seating out back. Additionally, OBC regularly hosts group rides ranging from casual Saturday morning coffee cruises to the monthly full moon ride, and from Thursday road rides to the Tuesday night ladies ride. Advocacy and community involvement is high on their list of priorities too, so stop in to chat with a staff member for details, and don’t forget to pick up some Sweet Bloom coffee on your way out!

 

True Wheel Bicycle Co.

120 West Broadway, Council Bluffs

For top-notch bike service and repairs on the other side of the Missouri River, you can’t do better than True Wheel Bicycle Co. The shop offers an incredible selection of high-quality bikes, and a team of staff members who are dedicated to getting you on the road quickly. Leave your bike for routine services or stop in for an emergency repair job — you won’t be disappointed!

 

The Bike Union & Coffee

1818 Dodge Street, Omaha

The Bike Union provides all of your cycling needs — from sales to routine service and emergency repairs. All this while making a major difference in the local community. The shop actively advocates for social change, youth engagement, and a healthier environment in the Omaha area and beyond. The shop operates on an apprenticeship program, providing a working place for Omaha youth, teaching bike skills and critical life skills.

As if that wasn’t enough, the Bike Union also boasts an amazing coffee shop, refurbishes pre-owned bicycles, promotes cycling as a way of life, and hosts Book Bike, a pedal-powered lending library.

 

Post-Ride Libations

Cycling in Omaha

Nothing goes with cycling quite like a post-ride brew, right? Check out the our ultimate guide to Omaha breweries and get to exploring! And if you’re more of a coffee person, fear not — we have a coffee guide, too.

 

Enjoy Your Ride!

Omaha is filled with bike paths and trails — so many more than we can count! Leave your recommendations in the comments below.


NP Dodge

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