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Great Basin National Park

Updated on February 10, 2011

Nevada's Striking Caves, Peaks, Wildlife and Desert Scenery in Great Basin National Park

There aren't many places in the world quite like Great Basin National Park that offer such drastic differences in scenery, nature and wildlife. The hot desert valley is contrasted with the conifer lined mountain peaks high above, along with the enigmatic underground Lehman's Caves. Read on to see some photo highlights of Great Basin, along with facts, tips and recommendations for this wonderful area of eastern Nevada.

- The park was established in 1986.

- The park is famous for its underground Lehman Caves

- Large bristlecone pines found in the park are one of the oldest known living things, some being around 5,000 years old.

- Lehman Caves maintains a near constant 50 degrees F all year.

- The Bonneville Cutthroat Trout is native to Great Basin National Park only.

- Great Basin has 12 trails with lengths between .3 to 13.1 miles.

- The gigantic peak, Mount Wheeler, towers above the park at 13,063-foot.

Plan on Getting Yourself a Good Pair of Sturdy Hiking Boots! - Great Basin has some excellent hiking opportunities that shouldn't be missed

Great Basin has excellent hiking trails that can be accessed during the summer months. The area is full of sharp rocks and and jagged surfaces that make a reliable, sturdy pair of hiking boots essential for your trip.

Merrell Men's Moab Mid Gore-Tex Hiking Boot,  Dark Tan, 7 M US
Merrell Men's Moab Mid Gore-Tex Hiking Boot, Dark Tan, 7 M US

Here are some great hiking resources for Great Basin:

* Great Basin hiking trails

* Backcountry hiking in Great Basin

* Hiking Wheeler Peak

* Trail Maps and Guides for Great Basin Hiking


Lexington Arch in Great Basin National Park

Lexington Arch in Great Basin National Park
Lexington Arch in Great Basin National Park

Wildlife in Great Basin - Photos of the beautiful creatures of this National Park

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Bighorn sheep (picture courtesy National Park Service)Jack rabbitElkBobcat
Bighorn sheep (picture courtesy National Park Service)
Bighorn sheep (picture courtesy National Park Service)
Jack rabbit
Jack rabbit

Learn and See More About Great Basin National Park! - Recommended guides and books!

A Video Tour of Great Basin National Park - See the highlights of Nevada's beautiful park, including Mount Wheeler and the Lehman Caves

Lehman's Cave is part of Great Basin National Park, but previously to that, was a National Monument. In 1986, the cave was added to form Great Basin National Park in Nevada. With beautiful stalactites, stalagmites, and other strange, intricate rock formations, the cave is reminiscent of Carlsbad Caverns, but without the crowds. It's located roughly 120 miles north of Las Vegas, and around 300 driving miles to the northwest of Zion National Park.

The limestone caves were first disovered in the 1880s by Absolom S. Lehman, a local ranch owner. Upon discovery, the cave was subject to much abuse. The stalactites and stalagmites were broken off as souvenirs, sold, and names were carved into the walls of the cave. In 1922, the caves were declared a National Monument by President Warren G. Harding, and later the cave was added to the creation that was called Great Basin National Park in 1986. To this date, the cave is one of the main attractions of the park, with tens of thousands of visitors stepping foot in the cave every year.

The closest town to the park is Baker Nevada, with larger towns like Ely, NV and Delta, UT being the next closest.

A Poll About Great Basin National Park - Have you been to this beautiful area of Nevada?

Have you been to Great Basin National Park?

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The cavernous underground rooms of Great Basin

The cavernous underground rooms of Great Basin
The cavernous underground rooms of Great Basin

Where is Great Basin National Park? - A map of the area surrounding and in Great Basin

This National Park is located in eastern Nevada, along the Utah border. Zoom in or out to see greater detail on this map.

Great Basin National Park:

get directions

Large differences in elevation bring greater ranges of wildlife!

The drastic difference in elevation between the high mountain peaks and the desert floor below bring a large variety of wildlife and plant life to the park. 11 species of conifers, 73 mammal species, 238 bird species, and over 800 plant species can be found in the park per

Nevada Roadside History - What roads to see and a little history of the backroads of Nevada

Find out where to go, and what roads are must-sees within the vast state of Nevada with this detailed historical guide. From big interestates like I-80 to smaller scenic highways, this book gives a deep glimpse into the state. Remember, Las Vegas is just one tiny portion of the state! It has much more to offer...

Roadside History of Nevada (Roadside History Series)
Roadside History of Nevada (Roadside History Series)

There's more to Nevada than one-armed bandits, cheap buffets, and Elvis impersonators. From ice ages to expeditions, Paiutes to pioneers, and dams to divorce seekers, Roadside History of Nevada provides an overview of the Silver State. Richard Moreno divides Nevada into six geographical-historical areas, rich and often surprising in detail: Pyramid Lake yielded a world-record 41-pound cutthroat trout; Virginia City housed Mark Twain when he wrote for the Territorial Enterprise; and Lovelock Cave was the site of one of the West's greatest archeological misunderstandings. Survey the boom and bust of the mining industry, trace the desperate plight of the Donner party trapped in Sierra snow, and observe the growth of gambling from low-profile to a neon-castle industry.


More Lenses in the Grand Circle - Visit America's southwest!

Bryce Canyon National ParkBryce Canyon is located in the southwestern portion of Utah, and is home to the famous red and white hoodoos spire formations, with remarkable hiking trails and scenic opportunities.

Capitol Reef National ParkA 70 mile wrinkle in the earth's crust resulted in the massive Capitol Reef area and National Park. Giant sandstone domes line the tops of this beautiful Utah plateau.

Canyonlands National ParkWind and water carved stone resulted in the area near Arches known as Canyonlands. The area boasts impressive, wide canyons, unique desert wildlife, and unmatched hiking.

Zion National ParkThe majestic Zion region has been eroded over time by the Virgin River, which slims down to the challenging hiking area of the Narrows.

Mesa Verde National ParkRemnants of a long lost culture can be found in the Colorado ruins of Mesa Verde National Park. Visit to gaze upon the incredible Puebloan Cliff Palace and ancient petroglyphs.

Monument ValleyDeep in the four corners region of the southwest is the often filmed Monument Valley reservation area. Now under the rule of the Navajo tribe, the area is open for touring, hiking and photography.

Arches National ParkSee the most natural sandstone arches anywhere in the world in Arches National Park of Moab, Utah. Erosion has left thousands of these unique stone structures standing in the park.

Black Canyon of the GunnisonDeep, black canyons leave a lasting impression in Colorado's Black Canyon of the Gunnison, with an impressive 2700 foot drop over into the Gunnison River.

Great Basin National ParkGreat Basin National Park contains the beautiful underground Lehman's Cave, and the mammoth peak of Mount Wheeler. Hike the area from its 13,000 feet peak, to beneath the earth's surface.

The Grand CanyonThe Grand Canyon is one of the wonders of the world, with an unforgettable hiking, photography, and road trip experience.

Thanks for Visiting!

Have You Been to Great Basin National Park? - Tell us about your trip!

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    • Kiwisoutback profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Massachusetts

      @Pat Goltz: And nowhere near as many visitors. Great park.

    • Pat Goltz profile image

      Pat Goltz 

      5 years ago

      Lehmann Caverns look like they are much larger than Carlsbad. I'd love to see them. I had never heard of them. Thank you for sharing!

    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 

      6 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      I love state parks, especially those with unique ecosystems, flora or fauna. I'd love to see the cave, and the trout.

    • orange3 lm profile image

      orange3 lm 

      7 years ago

      I haven't been there yet, but it's on my list. Great lens.

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 

      7 years ago from Canada

      My husband and I are going to Las Vegas this year but I just checked the map and this is a little off for us to visit this trip. Great lens.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      My name is Levi Mauerman and i am doing a project on it, i have been there it is great and the photo's are awsome love yah guys allways will

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 

      9 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      lovely place, lovely lens.5* as usual...

    • jimmielanley profile image

      Jimmie Quick 

      9 years ago from Memphis, TN, USA

      I enjoy your national parks series. They are wonderful, each and every one.

    • evelynsaenz1 profile image

      Evelyn Saenz 

      9 years ago from Royalton

      Thank you for joining us on A Walk in the Woods and don't forget to add your lens to the appropriate plexo.

    • RuthCoffee profile image

      Ruth Coffee 

      9 years ago from Zionsville, Indiana

      It looks awfully familiar but I don't think I've been there. Love the pics!

    • Sensitive Fern profile image

      Sensitive Fern 

      9 years ago

      I want to go there! Can't seem to get that far west. 5*


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