Hugh Butler Lake (Red Willow Reservoir), Nebraska

Hugh Butler Lake, nestled in the picturesque landscapes of southwestern Nebraska, offers a serene and rewarding fishing experience for anglers and outdoor enthusiasts alike. With its sprawling 1,600 acres of water, the lake is home to a diverse array of fish species, including largemouth bass, channel catfish, walleye, and northern pike. Surrounded by lush greenery, Hugh Butler Lake not only provides ample fishing opportunities near the dam and around the fishing piers but also invites visitors to explore additional recreational activities, such as boating, swimming, and hiking. Whether you’re a seasoned fisherman or a nature lover seeking tranquility, Hugh Butler Lake promises an unforgettable experience in the great outdoors.

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Hugh Butler Lake (Red Willow Reservoir), Nebraska State Resources

Nebraska DNR Website

If you’re looking for the most up-to-date information on fishing licenses, requirements, and information about Hugh Butler Lake (Red Willow Reservoir) you should definitely check out the Nebraska DNR. Here is their contact information and other useful links right here.

Hugh Butler Lake (Red Willow Reservoir) Location

Hugh Butler Lake (Red Willow Reservoir) 72718 Trail 2 McCook, NE 69001

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Fishing at Hugh Butler Lake, Nebraska

Hugh Butler Lake offers great fishing opportunities, with a variety of fish species available. Anglers can catch bass, channel catfish, black crappie, white crappie, and more. Some of the best places to fish are near the dam and around the fishing piers.

  • Largemouth bass
  • Channel catfish
  • Smallmouth bass
  • Rainbow trout
  • Black crappie
  • White crappie
  • Walleye
  • White bass
  • Northern Pike

Amenities at Hugh Butler Lake, Nebraska

Hugh Butler Lake has a range of amenities available to visitors, including:

  • Marina: Seasonal
  • Boat Rental: No
  • Boat Launch Ramp: Yes
  • Campgrounds: Yes
  • RV Hookups: Yes
  • Lodging: Nearby
  • Convenience Store: Nearby
  • Bait & Tackle: Nearby
  • Restaurant: Nearby

Available Activities at Hugh Butler Lake, Nebraska

In addition to fishing, visitors to Hugh Butler Lake can enjoy boating, swimming, and hiking around the lake.


  • Public lake with no entry fee
  • Diverse fish population for anglers
  • Multiple boat ramps for easy access
  • Available campgrounds and RV hookups
  • Nearby lodging, convenience store, bait & tackle, and restaurants
  • Activities include fishing, boating, swimming, and hiking
  • Pet-friendly (with some restrictions)


  • No boat rental available
  • No marina services on the lake


Are there any boat ramps and marinas at the lake?

Yes, there are multiple boat ramps around the lake, providing convenient access for boating enthusiasts. However, there are no marinas currently operating on the lake.

Are there any campgrounds or accommodations around the lake?

Yes, there are several campgrounds around Hugh Butler Lake, offering a range of amenities such as tent and RV sites, restrooms, and picnic areas. For those looking for more traditional accommodations, nearby McCook has a variety of hotels, motels, and bed & breakfast options.

Q: Are pets allowed at Hugh Butler Lake?

A: Pets are generally allowed in the outdoor areas around Hugh Butler Lake, provided they are leashed and under the owner’s control. However, specific rules may vary depending on the park or recreation area you visit, so it’s recommended to check local regulations before bringing your pet.

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