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12 Best Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations

Last updated on May 7th, 2022 at 11:39 pm

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Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations for the people tired of the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas. Usually all you want to do after a few days in Vegas is get away from the constant dinging of the slots. For us we need the quiet and serenity of a good boondocking location and while Nevada has a lot of BLM land some of it is not hospitable. Enter the Basin and Range National Monument and the boondocking options it supplies.

Visit the Basin and Range National Monument?

If you’re looking for a sight to see while traveling through Nevada, the Basin and Range National Monument is the place to go. Truthfully, it is one of the most expansive and remarkable landmarks you’ll ever come across. From valleys to mountains to forests, the most beautiful of terrains you would want to see can be found all year round! Every piece of it is completely untouched, making it so naturally beautiful. There’s also a wide range of outdoor activities to explore such as camping, hiking, boondocking, cycling and climbing. With that, there are also activities for everyone that both children and adults can enjoy. Knowing this much, the real question here is why wouldn’t you want to visit?

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 History of the Basin and Range National Monument

In 2015, the Basin and Range National Monument was created under proclamation, making it the second made national monument in Nevada. For years, the Basin and Range was fought to be protected for a multitude of reasons that went just beyond its natural beauty. It served as a home to wildlife that was only found to be native to the terrain.

There were also landmarks and artifacts of Native American history that were being fought to be preserved. The protection of the basin served as a huge example of protected public territory and would have an immense impact. Had it not been for the proclamation which created the national monument, it would have likely been used for controversial purposes and claimed as a means of creating a route for a nuclear waste repository. This was very likely true as it had set back these original plans.

12 Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations

1. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations – Cherry Creek Campground

Address
Alamo, Nevada
GPS: 38.15349, -115.62531
Elevation: 6686′

Management – Public – Forest Service (Official)

Cherry Creek Campground is open end of May thru September (pending snow and accessibility). The maximum RV length at Cherry Creek Campground is 25 feet.

This area is located is located 3 hours southwest of Ely:

Take US highway 6, 23 miles south of Ely.
Turn onto State highway 318 and drive south 41 miles to Sunnyside (Wayne E. Kirsch Wildlife Preserve).
Turn onto an improved gravel and dirt road and drive 45 miles west. Look for Cherry Creek signs along the way.

2. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Sites – Pahroc Wash

Address
Little Boulder Road
Hiko, Nevada
GPS: 37.783887, -115.059307
Elevation: 4665′

Management – Public – Bureau of Land Management

The maximum RV length at Pahroc Wash is 18 feet. This free campsite is located within the Bureau of Land Management N/A District.

3. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots – Little A’Le’Inn

Address
Old Mill Street
Alamo, Nevada
GPS: 37.6463, -115.7454
Elevation: 4824′

Management – Private (Official)

The road in is Gravel and 0.1 miles miles from a paved road. Little A’Le’Inn is open Year-Round. There are 30 or more campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay Few nights is fine. Ask at the Inn for more. at Little A’Le’Inn.

4. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations – Gap Mountain

Address
Unnamed Road
Ely, Nevada
GPS: 38.328073, -115.05092
Elevation: 5456′

Management – Public – Bureau of Land Management

Gap Mountain is open all year. Stayed here 9-29, road in had a half mile of well graded dirt from the highway. Some wind and road noise (the highway is right there) but peaceful otherwise with miles of nothing in every direction. Perfect for an overnight with great Verizon coverage.

5. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Sites – Dave Deacon Campground

Address
Ely, Nevada
GPS: 38.388571, -115.13401
Elevation: 5207′

Management – Public – Fish and Wildlife Service (Official)

The road in is Gravel and 7 miles from a paved road. Dave Deacon Campground is open Year Round. There are 16-29 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 30+. You may stay 8 Days at Dave Deacon Campground.

6. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots – ET Highway Rest Area

Address
Crystal Springs, Nevada
GPS: 37.529718, -115.2243
Elevation: 3822′

Management – Public – Rest Area (Official)

The road in is Paved. ET Highway Rest Area is open year round. The maximum RV length at ET Highway Rest Area is unlimited. You may stay overnight at ET Highway Rest Area.

7. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations – Hopkins Rest Area

Address
Alamo, Nevada
GPS: 37.43999, -115.378423
Elevation: 5476′

Management Public – Bureau of Land Management (Official)

8. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Sites – Area 51 – BLM Land Just Outside the Unofficial Back Gate

Address
(37.594062282145764, -115.89873095741495)
Nevada
GPS: 37.594062, -115.898731
Elevation: 5089′

Management – Public – Bureau of Land Management (Official)

The road in is Gravel and 10 miles from a paved road. Area 51 – BLM Land Just Outside the Unofficial Backgate is open Year round. There are 1-5 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 15 feet. You may stay 14 days at Area 51 – BLM Land Just Outside the Unofficial Back Gate.

9. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots – Chief Mt West

Address
Unnamed Road
Caliente, Nevada
GPS: 37.664588, -114.754044
Elevation: 4879′

Management – Public – Bureau of Land Management

This free campsite is located within the Bureau of Land Management N/A District.

10. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Locations – Lunar Crater

Address
Tonopah, Nevada
GPS: 38.394516, -116.070744
Elevation: 5870′

Management – Public – Bureau of Land Management (Official)

The road in is Gravel and 9 miles from a paved road. There are 1-5 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 35 feet. You may stay 14 at Lunar Crater.

11. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Sites – Stampede Campground

Address
Montgomery Cabin Road
Pioche, Nevada
GPS: 37.977598, -114.537135
Elevation: 6175′

Management – Public – Bureau of Land Management (Official)

The road in is Gravel and Two miles miles from a paved road. Stampede Campground is open All year round. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is unlimited. You may stay 14 at Stampede Campground.

12. Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots – Pahranagat NWR Campground

 

Address
Upper Lake Access Road
Alamo, Nevada
GPS: 37.298787, -115.120912
Elevation: 3373′

Management – Public – Fish and Wildlife Service (Official)

Pahranagat NWR Campground is open Year Round. There are 6-15 campsites at this location and the maximum RV length is 30+. You may stay 14 days at Pahranagat NWR Campground.

The top 10 Hiking Trails Near the Basin and Range National Monument

With the wide variety of hiking trails at the Basin and Range, why not look at the best ones to visit? These hiking trails can range from easy to rather hard, but can still be accessible to all skill levels, beginner or pro!

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #1. Wheeler Peak Trail via Stella Lake

1. Wheeler Peak Trail via Stella Lake - Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots

This hike includes a lake and has a beautiful Mountain View to see. It’s also a rather difficult one as it’s 8.2 miles long, especially gearing towards the end of the trail. Around the last half mile is when it proves itself to be hardest! Regardless of this, it will still be a fun trail so long as you come prepared!

Length: 8.2 mi
Elevation gain: 2,906 ft
Route type: Out & back

Hiking, Nature trips, Bird watching, Forest, Lake, River, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Rocky, Scramble, Snow, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #2. Bristlecone Pine Glacier Trail

2. Bristlecone Pine Glacier trail - Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots

If you’re looking for an easier trail to start off with, this is also a great one to look at! It’s 4.5 miles long and has plenty of wildlife from plants to birds to see. The Bristlecone trees are a sight to see for themselves!

Length: 4.5 mi
Elevation gain: 1,059 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Hiking, Walking, Bird watching, Running, Forest, Lake, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Rocky, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #3. Alpine Lake Trails

3. Alpine Lake Trails - Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots

A great beginner trail being about 2.7 miles long! This one is highly recommended to visit closer to winter time, as it looks beautiful when it snows! There are also lakes to see and more wildlife to come across.

Length: 16.7 mi
Elevation gain: 4,360 ft
Route type: Out & back

Backpacking, Camping, Hiking, Dog friendly, Forest, Lake, River, Views, Waterfall, Wildflowers, Wildlife, Rocky

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #4. Bristlecone and Alpine Lakes Loop

4. Bristlecone and Alpine Lakes Troop - Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots

This trail is also fairly easy, being about 5.7 miles. The Bristlecone Pines are also viewable on this trail hence the name! It’s amazing, isn’t it? Just imagine hiking by a 3,000 year old tree! You’ll be able to on this hiking trail. The Rock Glacier is also great to be able to see towards the end.

Length: 5.3 mi
Elevation gain: 1,020 ft
Route type: Loop

Hiking, Nature trips, Walking, Bird watching, Forest, Lake, Views

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #5. Lehman Cave

5. Lehman Cave - Basin and Range National Monument Boondocking Spots

This trail is very easy and short only spanning 0.4 miles in comparison to the other trails on this list. The cave tours are great and offer a very nice and easy walk with beautiful formations and wild flowers to see! It’s especially fun to go on tours as you’ll get to learn a lot of new things along the way. However, it is only accessible by tours and will have to be booked in advance, though it’s definitely worth it! This one is definitely the easiest of them all if you’re looking for an easygoing yet very scenic tour!

Length: 0.4 mi
Elevation gain: 45 ft
Route type: Loop

Kid friendly, Walking, Cave, Partially paved, Views, Wildflowers, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #6. Teresa Lake

6. Teresa LakeBasin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail

Also a fairly easy trail, the Teresa Lake is 1.5 miles long. The Alpine Lakes are nice and clear, and there’s been snow which is just enough to see, but still easy enough to hike through!

Length: 1.5 mi
Elevation gain: 305 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Hiking, Nature trips, Bird watching, Forest, Lake, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #7. Stella Lake Trail

7. Stella Lake TrailBasin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail

This trail is 2 miles in length and is a perfect trail for nature trips! The Stella and Teresa lakes are beautiful sights, as are the aspens. You’ll also be able to view the Wheeler’s Peak! There’s also a chance you could come across deer or elk!

Length: 2.1 mi
Elevation gain: 442 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Hiking, Nature trips, Bird watching, Forest, Lake, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #8. Wheeler Peak Trail via Alpine Lakes Trail

8. Wheeler Peak Trail via Alpine Lakes TrailBasin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail

This is another harder trail, spanning at 7.8 miles in length. It’s not so much the length that makes it so strenuous, but the winds, and protection from the cold is definitely encouraged! The meadows, pines, aspens, and the views from the summit are what make this trail much worthwhile.

Length: 2.1 mi
Elevation gain: 442 ft
Route type: Out & back

Kid friendly, Hiking, Nature trips, Bird watching, Forest, Lake, Views, Wildflowers, Wildlife, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #9. Baker Lake Johnson Lake Loop

9. Baker Lake Johnson Lake LoopBasin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail

One of the longest trails here is 12.9 miles long! It may seem overwhelming, but with the right preparation, can be a very fun trip! If it snows, there are chances that you’ll see different animals tracks such as bunnies, deer, or elk. At the top of Pyramid Peak, you’ll find there are great views from above!

Length: 12.9 mi
Elevation gain: 4,366 ft
Route type: Loop

Backpacking, Camping, Hiking, Nature trips, Bird watching, Forest, Lake, River, Views, Wildlife, Rocky, Scramble, No dogs

Basin and Range National Monument Hiking Trail #10. Lexington Arch Trail

10. Lexington Arch Trail

This one is pretty moderate, being 6.3 miles long. There are plentiful wild flowers, and also one of the most beautiful and notable sights is the Lexington Arch itself. In comparison to the other trails, this one can be quite warm, in which case, be prepared and stay hydrated!

Length: 6.3 mi
Elevation gain: 1,430 ft
Route type: Out & back

Dogs on leash, Kid friendly, Hiking, Nature trips, Walking, Bird watching, Cave, Views, Wildflowers, Washed out, No shade

Things To See and Do At the Basin and Range National Monument

There are many activities to explore, admire, and learn from at the Basin and Range. From hiking, to camping, to taking tours, here are some of the things you can experience during your adventure at the monument.

Lehman Caves

The Lehman Caves tour is one of the most popular places to be at when visiting the Basin and range, and for good reason! These caves were formed from the formation of the mountains and waters seeping through the rocks, turning them into nature made works of art! These tours will take you through the different types of cave formations, the structures they take, and how even today they’re still slowly changing! You’ll get to learn a lot about geology while you’re there.

Astronomy

The sights and beauty don’t just stop with the earth’s crust either, you can also experience the skies and the universe around you during the nighttime! The National park of the Basin Range has also become a tourist attraction for stargazers. During the night, planets and the stars can all be visible even to the naked eye.

Hiking

There is a wide range of hiking trails for you to explore, and a variety of places to see depending on what you want to experience! Whether that be lakes, forests, mountains or hills, it’s practically endless what you could see on your travels!

Especially along the hiking trails, you’re very likely to find animals along the way! Bird and animal watching is a very fun activity for this national park. There are many different types of animals that you can come across such as wild turkeys, lizards, bobcats, elk, deer, rabbits, and squirrels.

Camping

With all the proper preparations and planning done, boondocking can also be a fun experience out in the Basin and Range. The roads are fairly easy to drive through and provide a scenic experience along the way. There are five different developed campgrounds within the territory, as well as two different primitive campgrounds. Just make sure that you know your entire plan before attempting!

Conclusion

Whether you’re looking for someplace new, or if you’re traveling through Nevada and need to know where to visit, the Basin and Range National Monument is definitely the way to go! You’re guaranteed to learn something new, and see sights which you’ve never seen before. In which case again, the question must be asked, why wouldn’t you go to the Basin and Range National Monument?

For complete photos and videos of our trip visit our photos on our page Facebook Page

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