Its no wonder Wheeler Peak campground in the Great Basin National Park is my favorite campground within a half days drive of Las Vegas. As you awake in
the morning youre greeted by the sounds of the songbirds, the deer grazing in the meadow, and the creek meandering by your tent. Its also where youll find the trailhead to the Cirque trail. My favorite trail in the Park.
Becky Mills, Park Supervisor, Great Basin National Park ...I love that area too. And I think when I first came to this Park many many years ago that was the biggest surprises. I think surprise is a word that I would put with this Park. Because you come from an arid environment as youre driving. You drive up the mountain road to Wheeler Peak campground, and you begin on that little hike and you're in an entirely different environment. Your in a mountain Alpine environment with conifers, little streams that are very clear
and tinkling are coming through, he may see deer you may here birdsong, and the first thing you come to very quickly is a gorgeous turquoise alpine lake surrounded by the ridge. Then you can go to another one and see the same thing a little differently with wild flowers on it. Depending of course on what time of year. And then you have this extraordinary experience of
visiting the ancient Bristlecone grove.
David Bert ... And it is extraordinary. I mean, they're amazing, creatures really.
Becky Mills... When you stand before one and you realize it's alive and has lived for more than 4000 years you have to admire it strength its capability
of living in these elements, Its beauty and realize it is alive. It is a
I love exploring the park with Becky Mills. Even though shes been the Park
Supervisor for many years you can tell that her enthusiasm for the beauty
here hasnt been dampened one bit.
One of the many attractions at the Great Basin Park that you must do is take
the cave tour. There are an amazing number of limestone caves in the Great
Basin area, but none are as magnificent as the Lehman caves.
Becky Mills... That's true. Lehman caves is one of the most extraordinarily
decorated caves in the country. It's especially known for its shields. Not because other case don't have them, but because Lehman has so many more of them. And if you're interested in cave formations this is one of the places you definitely want to go to to see. And we have many many people that repeat that visit because you can't absorb the cave at one time. And if you love it the first time you'll learn more about it each time you come.
My good friend Brian Wignall would be upset with me if I didnt mention the
fantastic fishing here at Great Basin National Park. Brian managed a hat
trick here catching a rainbow, a brown, and a brook trout all in one day at
Baker creek. But I think that Brian would be please to know about the plans
for reintroducing into the streams here the native Bonneville cutthroat trout.
Becky Mills... You can now catch rainbow, Eastern Brook, and German Brown.
But the very exciting project we talked about is the Bonneville cutthroat
reintroduction project. And so some of our streams over the next few years,
there will be portions of them that we will be removing the non-native trout.
And after were sure that they're gone then we're going to be reintroducing
this native Bonneville cutthroat who dates from the Lake Bonneville that
stretched out here all the way practically to the Border Inn, on the border of Utah and Nevada.
I could go on for hours extolling the virtues of the Great Basin National
Park. The fishing, the Lehman caves, the last remaining glacier in Nevada,
the Bristlecone Pine grove, the alpine lakes, and the primitive camping as
well as the developed campgrounds, (with perhaps the lowest fees in the
nation). But what makes the Great Basin National Park so special is how you
can get a sense of your place in the universe. The air here is some of the
cleanest air in the country. Allowing you to look up at the night sky and see
the myriad of stars and galaxies that inhabit the cosmos. Also, from many
different vistas in the park it seems like you can see forever across the
Becky Mills... It seems like forever. I think that's why I feel like this
Park is a place where perhaps unlike many other wonderful places you can
really since the universe of time here. The universe of nature, and your own proportion in a vast universe.
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