One of the newest additions to Nevada’s state park list, Big Bend of the Colorado Recreation Area opened to the public in 1996. A popular destination, the park draws crowds due to the Colorado River, which provides plenty of water adventures — fishing, boating, swimming and more — for the outdoor enthusiasts. Big Bend also features a few hiking trails and a campground. Located in Southern Nevada, this state park is close to Laughlin, providing dining and shopping opportunities. If visiting during the summer, be sure to drink plenty of water as the temperatures can reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
Once a U.S. Army fort, Fort Churchill State Historic Park, today, is an area of preserved ruins that will certainly attract the eye of any history buff. Built in 1861, the fort was deserted a mere ten years later, and while it served other purposes over the years, eventually everything was left to the outside elements. Like the website states, ‘a visit to Fort Churchill requires some imagination’ due to the fact that some buildings no longer exist; however, nearby is the historic Buckland Station, a Pony Express stop. Like other state parks mentioned thus far, this one, too, has areas for picnicking and camping. You can find this one in Western Nevada.
Located in the charming town of Genoa, the Mormon Station State Historic Park is the site of the first permanent settlement of non-native people. Established in 1851, the park features a replica of the trading post — the original burned to the ground in 1910 — housing a museum with artifacts from the pioneer days. You’ll also find a picnic area and gazebo that is often used for celebrations like weddings. Genoa also has several attractions while you’re there, such as tasty eats, unique shopping, especially for antiques, a gorgeous setting, and fun events year-round.
Found in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, approximately 15 miles west of the Las Vegas area, Spring Mountain Ranch State Park is a beautiful 520-arce area. This little piece of luxury has been a working ranch and lovely retreat over the years with many famous owners, including Howard Hughes. Today the spacious ranch house serves as an information center for guests wanting to learn more about the area, plus visiting guests can take a self-guided tour of the property. Guided tours are also available, plus there is even an outdoor theater. Keep in mind that there is an entrance fee when entering the park.
Situated on the northeast shore of the Wild Horse Reservoir north of Elko, the Wild Horse State Recreation Area is a place where family and friends can go to have a good time, either for the day or longer. This state park is perfect for the entire family, especially those who love outdoor adventures, because there is so much to do, from fishing to camping to hunting to boating. The winter expands the activities to include ice skating, sledding, snowmobiling and skiing.