Where to Camp in the Silver State
When most people think of Nevada, they think of the bright lights of the Las Vegas strip. Fancy hotels, gambling, and too much alcohol are what usually comes to mind when you think of taking a trip to this state.
But don’t let that fool you — there’s more to do in Nevada than gamble and drink. It’s actually a great destination for a camping trip.
Here are our 10 favorite places to camp in Nevada.
1. Cathedral Gorge State Park – Panaca
Cathedral Gorge is located in a long, narrow valley where erosion has carved dramatic and unique patterns in the soft bentonite clay. Trails abound for exploring the cave-like formations and cathedral-like spires. Miller Point, a scenic overlook just north of the park entrance on U.S. 93, offers excellent views of the scenic canyon. Shaded picnic areas and a tree-shaded campground area are open all year. Hiking, picnicking, camping, nature study, photography and ranger programs are the most common activities at the park. Learn more.
2.Mt. Charleston – Clark County
3. Valley of Fire State Park – Moapa Valley
4. Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park – Gabbs
Berlin, a turn-of-the-century mining town, is preserved in a state of arrested decay. A trail through the town site tells the story of Berlin and its mine. Ichthyosaurs (pronounced “ick-thee-o-sores”) were ancient marine reptiles that swam in a warm ocean covering central Nevada 225 million years ago. Remains of these giant marine vertebrates are on display at the park’s Fossil House, and these official state fossils are a primary attraction for visitors from throughout the world. The park is east of Gabbs via State route 844. Learn more.
5. Black Rock Desert Recreation Area – Humboldt County
6. Great Basin National Park – Zephyr Cove
7. Mt. Rose – Reno
Mount Rose is a gem in the northern Sierra Nevada Range. It rises only a few miles northeast of Lake Tahoe. It is the 2nd highest mountain in the Lake Tahoe Basin and the highest Tahoe Basin peak in Nevada. Standing over 6,300 feet above downtown Reno, the mountain looks daunting, however well-maintained trails starting high up a mountain pass road, cut most of the difficulty for the armchair hiker. For this reason, if you hike the main trail, expect company, lots of company. Not everybody hikes to the top of the mountain. Many just go to the waterfall about 2 1/2 miles up the trail. However, all of the Mount Rose Trail gets crowds all over, every weekend. If you want the mountain to yourself, you are better off hiking during a weekday. Learn more.
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8. Nevada Beach Campground – Lake Tahoe
Nevada Beach Campground sits in the Lake Tahoe Basin of Nevada. Minutes from the bright blue water of Tahoe’s eastern shores, campsites are nestled in a sparse forest of pine trees and evergreen shrubs. The lake and its sandy beaches provides ample recreation opportunities and restaurants and casinos are just moments away. Learn more.
In this below-sea-level basin, steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Yet, each extreme has a striking contrast. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley. Learn more.
10. Spring Valley State Park – Pioche
Spring Valley State Park is a popular area for fishing, camping and sight-seeing. Visitors also enjoy hiking, exploring and touring the historic Ranch House museum. The park is located 20 miles east of Pioche via State Route 322. Spring Valley State Park is open all year, although snow may make winter access difficult. Learn more.
Do you have a favorite camping spot in Nevada that wasn’t included on this list? Let us know in the comments!
And be sure to check out the rest of our Best Campgrounds in the US series.