Nevada and Great Basin National Park

To get to all the famous National Parks in Utah and Arizona from California one has to cross Nevada. Most of Nevada is part of the Great Basin which is basically a series of mountains and valleys. However, the valleys aren’t nice lush meadows and creeks but huge, mostly flat dry land. I decided to take the US50 dubbed the “loneliest road in America”. The driving itself is very uneventful, even though there is more traffic then the name of the road suggests but one can get lost pretty nicely by leaving the US50 and hit one of the county roads.

Albeit there are not many traces of human civilization there is quite a bit of history to explore. From thousand years old Petroglyphs to historic Pony Express stations.  On top of that there are also a few hot springs along the way that are just super relaxing.

The Great Basin is also one of the darkest areas in the United States and perfect for taking pictures of the night sky. The thunderstorm raging in the west gave an ideal contrast to the calm Milky Way.

My goal was to get to the Capitol Reef National Park but I found another less known National Park on the way; the Great Basin National Park.

The park offers a cave which can be experiencedon a guided tour, almost 5000 year old trees and lots of hiking. One of the hiking opportunities I couldn’t pass was hiking up the Wheeler Peak. Mount Wheeler is the second highest peak of Nevada and is just shy of 4000 meters above sea level (3982m).

The park has three campgrounds of which one is at 3080m and the start of the hike up to the peak.

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