Nevada is home to several gorgeous natural wonderlands with desert landscapes, breathtaking valleys, and majestic caves. Any of these Nevada camping trips will form precious memories that’ll stick with you for a lifetime. It may seem to an outsider that Nevada is nothing more than barren desert, but there is so much more than that in this beautiful western state.
Just a short jaunt from the Las Vegas area and you can be camping in Valley of Fire, a wonderland of red sandstone rock formations that make the valley appear to be on fire--especially at sunset. You can visit Ancestral Puebloan ruins and rock art that mark this beautiful landscape. With 46,000 acres of sandstone, there is plenty of room to camp and hike in this glorious location. An easy beginner hike is the White Domes trail, which will take you to places you may have seen in Hollywood westerns, or you can Atlatl Rock Hike or Mouse’s Tank Hike to see the amazing petroglyphs left by the ancient dwellers in these rocks.
But maybe you want to get out of the desert and see a little water and cooler weather. Head up to Nevada Beach, with stunning views of Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Nevada Mountains, this white sandy beach is perfect for swimming, kayaking, and camping. With food concessions open during the busy season, this is a recreational wonderland.
And did you know that Nevada has one of the most beautiful and least-visited National Parks? Great Basin National Park, along the Utah border, has tall mountains with sheer cliffs, combined with beautifully colored leafy trees. The Lehman caves, which you can tour carrying your very own lantern, feature a geologic wonder called a helictite--calcite which curves into weird and unusual shapes that seem to defy gravity. And the best part of the park is to be experienced after the sun goes down; it’s so remote that there is virtually no light pollution and you can see glorious night skies, the Milky Way, and the moons of Jupiter. Great Basin is also home to the Great Basin Bristlecone Pine, the world’s longest living tree, which has been known to live 4900 years!
And don’t think of Nevada as barren desert: there are 200 lakes and reservoirs here, plus 600 streams and rivers. From Elko’s Ruby Mountains to the Colorado River near Las Vegas, and of course the still waters of Lake Mead, there is no shortage of places to drop a line or cast a fly. Our fish are as varied as our wildlife, with mountain whitefish, redband trout, bull trout, Yellowstone cutthroat, Bonneville cutthroat, as well as striped and black bass, pan fish, catfish and other sport species. There’s really no reason not to fish in this glorious wonderland.
Wherever you go and whatever you’re interested in, you’re going to find it in Nevada, a land that still boasts some of the most untouched and pristine wilderness in the lower 48 states. Make it a sure stop for a camping trip!