PHOTO ESSAY|Reasons to take the Road-Less-Traveled: Road Trip from Western Nevada to Death Valley

The route.
The route.
Gold Hill, Nevada.
Gold Hill, Nevada.
Gold Hill. Wagon.
Gold Hill. Wagon.
Gold Hill. Train Station.
Gold Hill. Train Station.
Virginia City, Nevada.
Virginia City, Nevada.
Reno, Nevada.
Reno, Nevada.
Highway 95, Western Nevada.
Highway 95, Western Nevada.
Walker Lake, Nevada.
Walker Lake, Nevada.
Long, empty road. Highway 95, Nevada.
Long, empty road. Highway 95, Nevada.
Tonopah. “Largest” town in western Nevada.
Tonopah. “Largest” town in western Nevada.
White Mountains. Straddling Nevada and California.
White Mountains. Straddling Nevada and California.
From where we came. To where we go.
From where we came. To where we go.
Burros. Wild.
Burros. Wild.
Death Valley.
Death Valley.
Badwater Basin.
Badwater Basin.
Badwater Basin – white line within yellow circle indicates sea level.
Badwater Basin – white line within yellow circle indicates sea level.
Badwater. Reflection.
Badwater. Reflection.
Death Valley. End of a long day.
Death Valley. End of a long day.

What’s the first thought that comes to your head when you think of Nevada? Las Vegas! Glitz! Glamour! Hot! Crowded! Sometimes, we think of Reno, too, and we associate Nevada with a vast desert landscape. All of this is true, but that’s only the surface. There is a rich mining history and a feeling that it’s still the Wild, Wild West. While there are alpine mountains, Nevada mostly consists of high (elevation) desert. It is barren, beautiful and wonderfully lonely. It’s a place that can take your breath away and where you can clear your head. It’s a rugged, sometimes freezing place that you can’t imagine how people forge out a lifestyle; but somehow you can see yourself spending time there. It’s a place that, at first, seems to be a land of misfits, but, strangely, it somehow beckons you . . .

Come on the road with me as I explore the rich mining history in the foothills east of Reno, then continue south on highway 95, where the White Mountains straddle Nevada’s border with California. On this route, we just scratch the surface of the true heart of Nevada on our way to Death Valley in California. There are no borders. Just magical desert for as far as the eye can see.

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