Nevada is a state in the Mountain West region of the United States. The capital is Carson City. It is bordered by Oregon to the northwest, Idaho in the northeast, California in the west, Arizona in the southeast, and Utah in the east.
For fun facts, Nevada is the driest state, the seventh largest and the ninth least densely populated state. The reason is probably that it is mostly desert, along with some semiarid areas. However, the climate conditions differ from the north to the south. While in the north, Nevada winters are long and cold, in the south they are mild and short.
Much of the state is also situated in the Great Basin. To the south from the Great Basin, there is the Mojave Desert. Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Nevada region are situated on the western side of the state.
Things To Do In Nevada
Nevada is a major tourist destination in the USA, mainly due to its many relaxed laws. Legalized gambling and lenient marriage and divorce laws attract visitors not only from the United States but from all over the world.
It is the only state with legalized prostitution, excluding for Las Vegas, Carson City, and Reno. Although Nevada is the fourth-largest gold producer in the world, the tourism industry remains the largest employer in the state.
However, Nevada is not only about casinos and legalized prostitution. It has a variety of places to offer to nature lovers as well. There are 24 state parks, 68 designated wilderness areas, and 13 recreational areas operated by the federal government, and a number of state recreation areas.
The naked bodies writhing in the sands, under the sky-high burning statue is the clichéd image of Nevada. No doubt about the reason why people go to Nevada during September.
Burning man is the festival which tempts people from all over the country and indulges in sin. But the state of Nevada has hidden treasures which very few eyes discovered.
Most of the population live in large cities of Las Vegas, Henderson, and Reno. That is why the rest of the desert land remains untouched. Let us explore the sandy wilderness of Sin State.
AWAY FROM THE CLUBS, INTO THE WILD
RED ROCK CANYON
The best way to see the glorious red rock canyons is to take the scenic drive route. But the thousands of feet high canyons make hiking an exciting outdoor experience. Pine Creek Canyon trail offers you a picturesque view of a gushing stream fringed by pine trees.
Favorite climbing spots are Calico Hills and Sandstone Quarry. Not just that the loop road is excellent for bicycle enthusiasts. If you are with family Willow Spring and Red Spring, offer fantastic picnic sites.
Lake Tahoe rests on the face of Earth for millions of years. Forested lands surround the serene lake of Tahoe, followed by looming Alpine mountains. In Winter Lake Tahoe becomes the abode of Winter sports lovers.
Heavenly mountain resort near the Stateline is popular among all the skiing spots. Other places include Squaw Valley, Diamond Peak, Alpine Meadows. From a frozen landscape, the Lake turns into a vibrant summer destination in February.
In South Lake Tahoe there are tons of water sports ranging from parasailing to kayaking that you can do. Scuba diving can be dangerous because of getting underwater in high altitude. Besides all this, Get your wheels ready for any season biking and hiking trails. Let your heart meander through the enchanting mountains surrounding Lake Tahoe.
WATERSPORTS IN LAKE MEAD
You can’t expect any less from the largest reservoir in the country. In the sprawling golden sands, you can lounge all day, or get in the water. Dive into the depths, or set your sail and boat around. Kayaking is the most popular recreational activity here.
If we talk about exploring the wilderness, the tiny coves hid beneath the rocky cliffs are epitomes of Wilderness. But away from nature’s lap, there are four sexy marinas where you can have an exciting time.
HIKING CATHEDRAL GORGE STATE PARK
Talk about intimidating yet alluring! Bentonite formation in Cathedral Gorge state park awakens the adventurer in all of us. Amidst the clear blue blanket and sweet melodies of birds, you will find a home. Enhance your communion with nature by pitching your tents in the camping ground.
Who is up for some sneaking around? You can crawl through the dark tunnels and discover old chambers in canyons. If you want a panoramic view of the park, take Eagle View trail.
THE GREAT NEVADAN ROADS
Roads of Dayton and Virginia City
The little city of Virginia with only 1000 residents retains the feel of past centuries. It will take an hour to drive through the cozy town. Dayton in the other hand is full of a crowd of tourists.
The Miami scenic trail sees bikers from around the world. You can exit the town at the southwest where Caesar Creek State Park exists. There are tons of camping grounds there as well as plenty of water skiing, horseback riding, and boating opportunities.
Roads from Reno to Great Basin National Park
In the East Central part of the state of Nevada is the Great Basin National Park. You will travel through Baker town as well as Utah. Driving here is the best and cheapest way to reach the park. It will cost hardly $50 to reach here, and the inviting scenery just tops it off.
Away from tires let us wander through the lush vineyards of Nevadan Valleys.
PAHRUMP VALLEY WINERY
The Pahrump Valley Winery is a winner in Silver state. It bagged many prizes for its exemplary performance and eclectic collection of wines. There is always a good stock of wine here, no matter the season. So, when you are off here tasting the wine for free, it feels divine.
Carefully choose among the seven wines that you taste. After a good lesson in the history of the vineyard and vines, you can go and dig into the lobster bisque in the winery. Such classy food! You can easily deem it as a five-star restaurant.
THE DILLINGER FOOD & DRINKERY
If you are near to visit Hoover Dam, then hurry up to Dillinger as fast as you can. Let the tag of a bar not disappoint you. The quirky décor of the pub sets an atmosphere where you can hang out with friends. Try the yummy seasoned French fries and the mammoth hamburger.
But the seafood bisque on the menu is also to die for. Apart from the lip-smacking gourmet burgers, Dillinger has craft beers too. Beers brewed from the best in the Sierra Nevada, Rogue and Lost Coast are in the collection.
And do not worry about timings. If you go at around 3 pm, the pub is open during that time. Though it is less crowded, it is suitable for a quiet late lunch.
The Churchill Vineyards are the one and only place where you get the locally brewed white vine. Its height about sea level makes it a cool place during the night and warm during the day, which gives an appropriate atmosphere for vines to nurture.
But the vinifera grapes farmed here, give a restricted yet unique collection of wines. 2013 Riesling is a fruity burst of peach, tangerine, and Riesling in your mouth. Gewurztraminer wine is a rare bottle of wine with a nice kick of spice. Other popular wines include 2012 Merlot, Chardonnay- Semillon, 2011 Petite Sarah.
GHOST TOWNS IN NEVADA
Abandoned yet appealing, there are several mining towns which no longer have any minerals in their soil. But the quiet charm of the Ghost Towns calls into a mystic part of every traveler.
You never think of a Ghost town and a state park together. But Berlin is a whole different case. The Union mine which stood for nine odd years in the late 1890s did not find success in its revival.
There are only a dozen of buildings left from the early mining settlement. But what makes the Ghost town more tempting is the archaeological remains found just above the Canyon holding tatters of the mining camp. The faded town of Berlin is a token of lost mining days.
In the dawn of summer, morning heads to the non-residential town of Metropolis. The story of Metropolis began in 109 when New Pacific Reclamation company bought acres of land here.
But when plans go wrong, and even the heavens can’t help, what can a man do? The thriving town of Metropolis faced scarcity of water, which led to drought conditions. Families left, homes became buildings, and what you see now is a mere shell of a dream.
The Lincoln School and Metropolis Hotels are two epitomes of a thriving community in Metropolis.
It is the place where once more than 10, 000 people lived. In 1904 the town set its foundation stone, but as soon as five years after that, financial problems set in. Businesses became flops; Light company left, and water became hard to get.
Till 1919 all mines shut down, due to exhaustion of minerals. What stands now are ruins of saloons, restaurants, and abandoned houses. You can see the bank which was once a three-storeyed building. Another structure is a memento of the beginning of Rhyolite- it is a structure made from beer bottles.
When extra-terrestrial beings set their feet on the earth, it becomes an epic moment astronauts as well as every human being. Nevada has many proofs which led to the theory of extra-terrestrial visits. What better way to travel, than with the aliens?
Located 80 miles from Las Vegas this place in Nevada first witnessed the alien visits. The military base of army claims to carry out only testing of weapons. But the severe warning signs and tight security from armed guards to closed-circuit TV camera raises doubts.
Many believe this place to be the safe house of flying saucers remains which hit New Mexico. You can go here, but the warnings at every nook and cranny prohibit the public from entering the base.
ROUTE 375 – EXTRATERRESTRIAL HIGHWAY
20 Years ago Route 375 earned a new name, “ The Extra-Terrestrial Highway.” The highway from Crystal Springs to Warm Springs.
You will hear sonic booms and see aircraft here every day. That is the reason many believe it is the playing ground of aliens. This quiet stretch of roadway is in proximity to Area 51. UFOs cover-ups, alien sightings, and flying saucers is an everyday thing here.
But the speculations turned to belief when Bob Lazar claimed on television that he worked on an alien spaceship. Bars, statues, and shops use alien visits as a base for increasing tourism. And it is working!
The glowing sands of Nevada land the state a middle eastern aura. Spending a cool night under the clear blue sky and feeling the whispers of desert wind is enchanting.
DEATH VALLEY NATIONAL PARK
As its name suggests, it is death personified. Those who can’t take the heat should get out of the park! The soaring temperatures and excessive dryness make it one of the harshest environment on earth. You can find respite in the lush oases. But the respite is short-lived because as soon as the day arrives, it gets hotter.
Still, Death Valley has quirky rock sculptures, huge canyons, and small hills. Get a taste of adventure on your lips by visiting the intimidating wilderness of Death Valley.
VALLEY OF FIRE STATE PARK
Valley of Fire is where all outdoor geeks will run to. The semi-arid scenery defines the essence of the desert. You can drive along the park and see the cactus bloom in spring.
Not just that, the red sandstones glow when the sun rays kiss their surface. Hence, the name “ Valley of Fire.” The rising sandstone canyons and faults give hikers incredible opportunities to have a panoramic glimpse of the State Park.
BLACK ROCK DESERT
Talk about extreme desert conditions and all you imagine is sand. But this semi-arid desert plain is home to lava plains, alkali beds. The Black Rock Desert will challenge your body, mind, and soul!
But if you are all set on discovering the raw beauty of deserts then nothing can hold you back. The wild, scenic charm of the dusty roads is unforgettable. And the inner hippie in you will do a happy dance once you enjoy the revelry of Burning Man. It is much more than you have heard about. It is high-power craziness, with a capital C.
Once you test your feet in the pool of deserts, you are going to love it. And to continue your frenzy we take you to another Nevadan desert- The Mojave! It is here, where you can come across the Death Valley National Park and the Joshua Tree.
Tours in the Desert are 8 hours long, but they have an exciting itinerary. It ranges from visiting the Mead Recreation Area to Hoover Dam. The night tours include hiking, camping, and much more exciting prospects. Go ahead and let your inner gypsy lead the way!
The clear, dark skies of Nevada make it possible for the celestial bodies to shine brighter than usual. Hence it is a perfect ground to pitch your tent in the midst of nowhere and spend your night gazing at the stars.
The gold rush in Tonopah boasted a lot of Gold Productions. During its heydays it was a majestic town, booming with wealth. But now the Ghost town of Tonopah has very little to offer.
The queen of silver camps has notoriously haunted buildings which attract ghost hunters. Apart from that, there are plenty of star trails to follow in the brightest sky in the US. And while you are waiting for the stars sneak out, explore the Mining Park.
GREAT BASIN NATIONAL PARK
The Park offers courses throughout the year in Astronomy. You can go to its observatory and view the stars, or pitch your tent outside and wait for the stars.
Remember it is one of the 8 parks in the US with dark skies. So, you need to wait till the moon disappears to get a clear shot at stars.
January 14, 2017 12:05 am
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