Nevada Trails Western Region Backroads and 4-Wheel Drive Trails  by Peter Massey, Angela Titus, Jeanne Wilson

Nevada Trails Western Region Backroads & 4-Wheel Drive Trails Guide Book

by Peter Massey, Angela Titus, Jeanne Wilson (Adler Publishing )
Nevada Trails Western Region Backroads and 4-Wheel Drive Trails  by Peter Massey, Angela Titus, Jeanne Wilson
This first volume in our Nevada series of Trails books features destinations in western Nevada, near the towns of Reno, Carson City, Virginia City, Tonopah and Hawthorne. Meticulous trail details instruct readers how to safely navigate hundreds of miles of the region's best scenic backroads and four-wheel drive trails. See ghost towns, numerous old mines and mill workings, old railroads and stage lines along 39 off-road routes. Directions include GPS coordinates and all trails are rated for difficulty, mileage, driving time, remoteness and more. Descriptions highlight ideal places to camp, hike, mountain bike, fish and sightsee. Histories recount days of the Wild West.

© 2008 Peter Massey, Angela Titus, Jeanne Wilson/Adler Publishing . All Rights Reserved.

Trails from the "Nevada Trails Western Region Backroads & 4-Wheel Drive Trails" Guide Book
Displaying trails 20 of 39.

Displaying trails 1 to 20 of 39.

Just less than 6 miles south of Hawthorne, this is a short and scenic trail within the Wassuk Range. The road climbs into the canyon, which is a forested environment compared to the typical wide open, high desert terrain surrounding Hawthorne. The canyon is home to large ponderosa and jeffery pine trees, which are some of the largest for miles around. The trail follows Allum Creek (or wash, depending on the time of year) to the end of the canyon, where there was once a USFS campground. Although the facilities have been removed, nice places to camp or picnic remain scattered throughout the canyon, which is a cool retreat in the summer months. Special Attractions: Drive through scenic, shady Allum Creek Canyon near Hawthorne. Pleasant spots for picnicking or backcountry camping. Access to several more nearby forest roads.
Hawthorne, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 7
This trail begins 2 miles or so south of Hawthorne and travels southwest on a wide, maintained dirt road. Sagebrush and rabbit brush vegetation surrounds the trail, and pinyon and juniper trees grow alongside the road as it begins to climb toward Lucky Boy Pass. The wide shelf road switchbacks a few times before arriving at the pass. From the trail near the pass, views to the west of the Sierra Nevada are scenic and expansive. The trail descends from the pass and remains a wide, maintained road until the turn off to the site of Fletcher. The trail narrows slightly and becomes rougher with embedded rocks as it proceeds south along the western slope of the Aurora Crater. Special Attractions: Long, scenic trail through a historic mining district. Extensive remains of Bodie ghost town. Sites of Aurora and Del Monte. Scenic Bodie Canyon. Mono Lake at the end of the trail.
Hawthorne, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 45.7
This trail begins in the town of Mason and travels past the remains of the Bluestone Mine and then through a narrow but scenic canyon within the hills of the Singatse Range. It ends at the intersection with Western #27: Ludwig Ghost Town Trail. Begin by following Nevada 339 north from Mason to the intersection with Weed Heights Road, near a massive tailings dump. From this intersection, the trail turns west toward the hills. The vegetation on the surrounding landscape is minimal, The trail winds through a narrow canyon consisting mainly of low mountain scrub, sagebrush, and rabbit brush. Special Attractions: Numerous remains of the Bluestone Mine. Scenic and challenging 4WD trail through a narrow canyon in the hills of the Singatse Range. Extensive remains near the Ludwig town site. Network of trails to explore through a historic mining district.
Weed Heights, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 7.4
A paved two-lane road leads nearly all the way to Candelaria ghost town where numerous structures remain, including several stone and wooden buildings. Huge tailings piles surround the paved road that runs between the highway and Cadelaria, as well as the town itself. The pavement ends just before Candelaria ghost town, and then the road is a wide, graded dirt road. The road remains very wide until reaching the turnoff to Belleville town site. Beyond Candelaria, there are signs of the mining activity of the early days on the surrounding hills. The road also follows the route of the old Carson & Colorado Railroad, and the railroad grade is visible on the hillside to the north of the trail. Sagebrush is the main vegetation adorning the landscape around the flat, easygoing road. Special Attractions: Candelaria ghost town. Belleville town site. Other tracks off the main trail to explore.
Mina, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 15.4
At first this trail navigates along a paved road through a residential area. Soon the route joins FR 690, which is a one-lane dirt road with some embedded and loose rock. The surrounding vegetation starts out similar to other trails in the region, with pinyon and juniper trees, sagebrush and rabbit brush. However, the landscape is different because of the rolling hills. Most of the other trails in the region cross relatively flat terrain. Proceeding southwest, the rugged Sierra Nevada Range to the south and the Carson Range to the west add a rugged backdrop to the scenery of the rolling hills near the Carson River. Special Attractions: Scenic and challenging 4WD trail along the Carson River. Good picnicking and backcountry camping spots. Fishing in the Carson River.
Coleville, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 12.5
This trail travels north from Western #30: Churchill Canyon Trail along a seasonal creek and ends in Adrian Valley on Western #28: Churchill Station Trail. Zero your trip meter and head northwest from Churchill Canyon Trail on a rough and rocky one-lane road. The rocks make the ride bumpy but do not present difficulty to 4WD vehicles. The trail proceeds through a wide canyon across remote terrain, which is covered with sagebrush and scrub brush. Soon the road enters a substantial grove of cottonwood trees that grow along the banks of a seasonal creek. These trees are especially scenic in the fall when the leaves turn brilliant yellow. Special Attractions: Scenic trail from Churchill Canyon to Adrian Valley. Many tracks off the main trail to explore. Cottonwood trees along the creek. Good backcountry campsites.
Wabuska, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 6.9
This trail begins near the southern end of Western #32: Como Ghost Town Trail. The road is a wide, graded dirt road, which proceeds to the northeast toward Churchill Canyon along the northern edge of the Buckskin Range. The road is very corrugated and has a few embedded rocks, which create a rough ride; however, in good conditions the trail is negotiable in a passenger vehicle. Traveling across the desert landscape, adorned with sagebrush and creosote bush, the road soon enters the wide Churchill Canyon. The tall, red canyon walls slope gently upwards, enclosing the trail, and a few pinyon and juniper trees dot the wash at the bottom of the canyon. This arid landscape within the red rock canyon is quite scenic. Special Attractions: Easy going road through scenic Churchill Canyon. Road within a network of 4WD trails to explore. Old cabin remains.
Simpson, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 13.3
This trail begins just north of Wabuska off of US Alt. 95. Soon after crossing a cattle guard traveling west, turn off the wide, graded gravel road onto a one-lane track toward the site of Thompson. The extensive concrete foundations of the mill, foundations of other structures, tailings piles, and a lot of scattered debris remain at the site. Return to the wide, graded road after exploring the extensive remains of Thompson and continue traveling west. Past the intersection with Western #30: Churchill Canyon Trail, the road narrows and becomes rocky with some embedded and loose rocks, which make for a bumpy ride but do not present any difficulty to 4WD vehicles. Special Attractions: Thompson town site. Site of Churchill station. Many 4WD trails off the main road to explore.
Wabuska, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 14.7
This trail begins by traveling northeast from US 6 on a wide, graded dirt road with some small loose and embedded rocks. For its entire length, the drive is relatively smooth and easygoing and is accessible to passenger vehicles. There are no trees on the surrounding landscape, and the presence of sagebrush or other vegetation is minimal. The scenery of the flat, white salt marsh, which contrasts dramatically with the volcanic slopes of the Candelaria Hills to the north and the Monte Cristo Range to the east, is otherworldly yet appealing. Special Attractions: Trail through Columbus Salt Marsh. Easy drive to Columbus ghost town with a large network of more challenging 4WD trails in the Candelaria Hills to explore.
Coaldale, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 12.6
This trail begins in the town of Dayton and winds through the rugged Pine Nut Mountains to its end in Smith Valley. The trail starts off on the paved Old Como Road, which runs alongside a gravel pit. Heading east toward the hills, the pavement ends, and the trail becomes a wide dirt road with numerous embedded and loose rocks. Beyond the fork, the road narrows and gets rougher from the numerous embedded and loose rocks. Sections of the road are also eroded. This is the standard of the trail for almost its entire length, so allow plenty of time and a full tank of gas to drive the total 20.9 miles. Some of the rocks are quite large and others are sharp, so the use of good offroad tires is recommended for driving this trail. Special Attractions: Long, scenic 4WD trail winding through the Pine Nut Mountains. Town site of Como. Numerous 4WD trails branching off the main route to explore. Route travels a section of the Wellington Backcountry Byway. Potential to view wild horses.
Dayton, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 20.9
This trail starts off from the intersection of Nevada 361 and an unmarked gravel road 3.2 miles north of Gabbs. The road proceeds east to a small electric substation. Beyond the substation, continue traveling east along a one-lane dirt road that is eroded and embedded with rocks. It is approximately 2 miles to Downeyville town site, which is identifiable by the stone foundations, a tailings heap, and scattered mining debris. Walking around the site reveals that the area covered by the town was extensive. Special Attractions: Remains of Downeyville mining camp.
Gabbs, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 6
This trail begins just off of Nevada 207 near Lake Tahoe. Proceed north off the highway on North Benjamin Drive. This paved road accesses the National Forest road after running through a residential area for approximately 2 miles. Before entering the National Forest, the paved road becomes Andrea Drive. Passing through a seasonal gate into the USFS Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, the dirt road is one lane wide, but with plenty of pullouts for passing oncoming vehicles. Proceeding north, the trail runs through a forest of mainly conifers trees. Large embedded rocks make it a bumpy ride, and large boulders flank the road on either side. Special Attractions: Views of Lake Tahoe. Network of 4WD roads to explore. Good picnic spots.
South Lake Tahoe, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 11.6
This trail begins just south of Gabbs on Pole Line Road (CR 89). The road is wide and well maintained and travels across the sagebrush- and rabbit brush-covered terrain. Soon the trail turns to the east, leaving Pole Line Road, and makes its way to the sites of Goldyke and Atwood. This road is a narrow, one-lane trail composed of packed sand, dirt, and some small rocks. As the trail progresses, the ride is bumpy from the rocks and erosion. Special Attractions: Wild horse viewing. Trail through historic Fairplay Mining District. A network of 4WD tracks to explore. Expansive views of the high desert terrain from many points along the trail.
Gabbs, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 23.3
This trail begins near the mining town of Round Mountain and travels east from Nevada 376 on FR 110 into the hills of the Toquima Range. The remains of old stone structures flank the trail, starting about a mile before the trail’s end. It finishes at Jefferson ghost town where extensive mining and town ruins remain to explore. The ruins at the town site include a mine header, an old boiler, and an engine used at the mine. Among other scattered debris, several crumbling stone structures and cabins also remain. Special Attractions: Extensive remains of Jefferson ghost town. Numerous stone building ruins alongside the trail. Scenic and challenging 4WD trail within a network of trails to explore. Ideal for ATVs, snowmobiles, and dirt bikes.
Carvers, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 19.4
This trail begins 4 miles south of the intersection of US 395 and Eastlake Road (Nevada 428) in New Washoe City. Proceeding east from Eastlake Road on Jumbo Grade Road, the trail starts out as a paved road running through a residential area. After crossing a cattle guard, the trail becomes a wide, graded gravel road. Soon desert vegetation begins to close in on the trail as it narrows and begins to climb Jumbo, circa 1943 slightly. The standard of the trail drops quickly to a rocky and rutted road making high clearance a requirement. Special Attractions: A network of 4WD trails to explore. Site of Jumbo Mining District and town site. Good for ATVs and dirt bikes. Can be connected with Western #21: Ophir Grade Trail to access Virginia City.
New Washoe City, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 4.5
This trail begins at the intersection of King Street and Mountain Street, 0.4 miles west of US 395, and heads west from the suburbs of Carson City toward the Carson Mountain Range. Traveling on paved King Street, the road soon becomes Kings Canyon Road. After approximately 1.6 miles, you can see evidence of the Waterfall Wildfire from July 2004 on the surrounding landscape. In the fire, 8,799 acres were burned, and 31 homes, 3 businesses, 32 out buildings, and 51 vehicles were lost or damaged. It is believed the fire started as a result of an escaped campfire. Special Attractions: Chance to travel the route of a historic emigrant trail. Expansive views south over the Carson Valley from the shelf road. Exciting, challenging 4WD road.
Carson City, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 11.9
This scenic and historic trail begins in Gabbs Valley. It travels east through Lodi Valley and into the Lodi Hills, branching out to explore the remains of the Lodi Hills Mining District. The trail begins as a wide, graded dirt road, which is well maintained. The sparse vegetation within the Gabbs and Lodi Valleys is primarily made up of sagebrush. Views of the surrounding Paradise Range to the east and the Lodi Hills to the north are scenic. Special Attractions: Extensive remains at Lodi mines and town site. Interesting spur to Huntley and White Pine Mines through a narrow, scenic canyon deep within Lodi Hills.
Gabbs, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 26.2
Logan House Creek Trail, USFS Trail #33, is a pleasant drive through the forest, which loops off Western #23: Genoa Peak Trail and eventually rejoins it about 4 miles south of the starting point. Throughout its length, the trail is one-lane wide, but passing oncoming vehicles is not difficult because plenty of pullouts are available. The gravel road proceeds to the southeast downhill through dense vegetation, including conifers interspersed with aspen stands. Frequently trees grow close to the trail. Short sections of the trail are paved along its length, likely a result how muddy the trail could become in wet weather, as well as its proximity to the Logan House Creek watershed. The trail becomes a shelf road around the 0.7-mile point. The drop off is very steep, and the road is narrow. Special Attractions: Views of Lake Tahoe. Aspen stands, which are brilliant yellow and scenic in the fall. Clearings for backcountry camping or picnicking.
Lake Tahoe, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 6.6
This trail begins in a residential area around the towns of Smith and Wellington and runs north through the historic mining area of Delphi and Ludwig. It crosses Mason Pass and the Singatse Range and ends near the town of Yerington. After navigating the paved roads of the Main Ranch Residential area, the trail truly begins on the sandy and dusty, dirt Delphi Road. Very little vegetation other than sagebrush adorns the landscape surrounding this two-lane, flat easygoing road. Views to the northwest of Western #31: Sunrise Pass Road winding through the Pine Nut Mountains and over to the dry lake bed of Artesia Lake are quite scenic. Navigation is easy along this section. Beyond the Delphi town site, where nothing but some scattered mining debris and a corral remains to mark its location, is where navigation more difficult.
Wellington, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 26.6
From the intersection of Nevada 360 and the road with signed access to the BLM Marietta Wild Burro Range, proceed west along a wide graded dirt road. Traveling toward the Excelsior Mountains, the landscape is sparsely adorned with sagebrush and rabbit brush. The scenic, rocky tops of the Excelsior Mountains are dotted with pinyon and juniper trees. The trail climbs across the arid landscape to an overlook of the basin in which the town of Marietta and Teels Marsh Sand dunes near Teels Marsh Grave site near Marietta are situated. Special Attractions: Wild burro viewing. Marietta ghost town. Sand dunes at Teels Marsh. A network of 4WD trails within the Excelsior Mountains to explore.
Mina, NV - Off-Highway Drives - Trail Length: 17.8