There’s something ironic about Nevada. While the name means “snow-covered” in Spanish, much of the state consists of desert and is very arid. Its famous city Las Vegas, meanwhile, used to be abundant with grasses that was why Mexican explorers named the area as such.
Nevada is the 36th state in the United States. Its capital is Carson and biggest city is Las Vegas. Due to its silver mining industry, it is officially nicknamed as “The Silver State.”
There’s more to know about Nevada than just Las Vegas. While it is famous for Las Vegas’ casinos and resorts (as well as the state’s zero income tax), Nevada also features isolated natural wonders which we will mostly discuss here in this gallery.
Lake Tahoe is a large freshwater lake (22 miles maximum length, 12 miles maximum width), situated along the border of California and Nevada. It is one of the largest lakes in the US in terms of volume at 122,160,280 acre foot. Its clear waters and panoramic views from either side of the two states is unbeatable.
The Interstate-15 or the I-15 in Nevada makes the part of the Interstate 15, one of the major interstate highways in the United States (serving several cities from Butte, Montana on north to San Diego, California on the south). The I-15 in Nevada is the only primary road that motorists and visitors could pass to visit Las Vegas.
The Lehman Caves is one of the features of the Great Basin National Park in White Pine County, east-central Nevada. The caves, most likely discovered by a rancher and miner named Absalom Lehman during the 1880s, was declared as a National Monument in 1922, and was also combined as a national park in 1986. A lot of creatures call the Lehman Caves home — mostly insects and arthropods such as spiders and pseudoscorpions (arachnids that look exactly like true scorpions sans the stinger), and bacteria.
Lexington Arch is another scenic feature of the Great Basin National in White Pine County, east-central Nevada. This arch rises above the base of the Lexington Canyon, and its height is equivalent to a six-storey building. It was formed by the forces of weather over many centuries. Unlike most natural arches and bridges that are made of sandstone, the Lexington Arch is otherwise made of limestone.
The Mojave Desert is one of the driest deserts in the United States. It occupies the most significant portion of California (on the southeast), while it has a considerable portion in southern Nevada. The desert also has portions in southwest Utah and northwest Arizona, although to a much lesser extent.
The Sierra Nevada mountain range imparts a “rain shadow” effect on the Mojave Desert, meaning that the latter is “shadowed” or barred from precipitation by the high mountains. This makes the western part of the mountain range more wet and the west side more dry and arid.
The mountain bluebird (Sialia currucoides) was designated as the state bird of Nevada in 1967.
The sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) was declared as the official state flower of Nevada in 1917. Nevada is also nicknamed as “The Sagebrush State.”
The Stella Lake is a subalpine lake in the Great Basin National Park, in White Pine County, Nevada. It is located north of Wheeler Peak, the highest peak of the Snake Range (mountain range).
The Stella Lake occupies a glacial cirque by the Wheeler Peak campground. Most of its water comes from the melting snow.
The Valley of Fire State Park is located near the town of Overton, Nevada. It is the state’s oldest national park, and was designated as a US National Natural Landmark in 1968. Magnificent red sandstones and sand dunes that were formed by natural forces such as erosion, often appear to be “in flames” when exposed to the sun, thus the park’s name.
Nevada designated the bristlecone pine (Pinus aristata) as its official state tree in 1987.
Carson City (population, 2010: 62,580) is the capital of Nevada. It was founded in 1858 by politician Abraham Curry, who bought the Eagle Station settlement and renamed it as Carson City.
Nevada declared the desert bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis nelsoni) as its official state animal in 1971.
The flag of Nevada, like any other state flag, reveals much of its character and distant past. Its field is a solid cobalt blue (directly derived from the blue part of the US flag). The state’s emblem is located in the upper left hand corner.
On the emblem, there’s the golden yellow ribbon contains the words “BATTLE BORN” as Nevada was declared as a state during the Civil War. Below the ribbon is the silver star (Nevada being The Silver State due to its silver mining industry) and underneath it is the state’s name. Below the star and the state name are two sprays of sagebrush (Nevada’s state flower). The first flag was created in 1905 but it was adopted in 1991.
One of Nevada’s most striking features is the Fly Geyser, an odd-looking geyser located near the Black Rock Desert in Washoe County, Nevada. Also known as the Fly Ranch Geyser, it is a man-made geyser which has become a popular tourist spot.
The geyser was created by accident. In 1917 a well was drilled for irrigation purposes. However, it was found out that the high temperature of the water (around 200 degrees Farenheit) was not suitable for farming. The well was abandoned.
Another well-drilling attempt in 1964 was done at the the same area where the geyser stands today, this time for the purposes of exploring for geothermal energy sources. But the well was again abandoned and may not have been sealed properly. Then the dissolved minerals started to rise and accumulate, forming into a weird-looking pillar where the geyser sits, and it continues to grow. The mound spews hot water constantly.