From the sagebrush at its alluvial base to the 13,063-foot summit of Wheeler Peak,
Great Basin National Park includes streams, lakes, alpine plants, abundant wildlife, a variety of forest types including groves of ancient bristlecone pines, and numerous limestone caverns, including beautiful Lehman Caves.




Basic Information on Great Basin National Park

Operating Hours for Great Basin National Park
Daily, Summer: 7:00 am to 6:00 pm
Daily, Winter: 8:30 am to 5:00 pm
Closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Years Day.

Lehman Cave tours are offered daily year-round. In the winter, the Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive is only open to the Upper Lehman Creek Campground and Lehman Creek Trailhead. Opening dates of the higher portions of the road depend on weather. The road usually opens for the summer season starting in May, June or early July. It usually closes by late October or November.

How to Get to Great Basin National Park

Nearest Airport to Great Basin National Park - Nearest airport is Elko 70 miles, with limited flights. Salt Lake City 240 miles, Las Vegas 287 miles, Cedar City 120 miles.

How to Drive to Great Basin National Park - Highway 6 & 50 to Baker, NV; 5 miles on Highway 488 to park.

Weather & Climate
This is a fairly arid region, most precipitation received as snow or during summer thunderstorms. Winters are cool and summers are mild. Be prepared for changes in weather. Lehman Caves is 50 degrees F, 90% humidity year round, a jacket and suitable walking shoes are recommended.

Upper Lehman Creek, Wheeler Peak, and Baker Creek Campgrounds have a designated wheelchair accessible site. The visitor center is wheelchair accessible as is the First Room Tour of Lehman Caves.

Where to Staty at Great Basin National Park

Camping at Great Basin National Park


What to Do at Great Basin National Park

Activities and More Information
Ranger Lead Programs
The ranger-guided hike to the ancient bristlecone grove in the Wheeler Peak cirque is an excellent way to learn more about the natural history of these incredible trees an the Wheeler Peak area. Meet the ranger at 10am at the Bristlecone Trailhead. The group hikes at a relaxed pace 1.4 miles (with an elevation gain of 600 feet) to the bristlecone grove, stopping along the way for discussion. From that point, you may continue on to the glacier, hike the Alpine Lakes Loop Trail, or return the 1.4 miles to the parking lot. This program is weather conditional. Summer only.

Campfire programs are offered nightly in the summer season at Upper Lehman Creek Campground and on Friday and Saturday evenings in Wheeler Peak Campground. Program topics vary, covering subjects related to Great Basin National Park's cultural and natural resources. Programs last 40-60 minutes. Please come prepared with warm clothing and a lantern or flashlight. Summer only.

A fun, educational kids' program. Meet the ranger at the amphitheater in the Upper Lehman Creek Campground. The program begins at 2:30pm on Fridays and Saturdays, and lasts an hour. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Summer only.

Lehman Caves can only be entered with a guided tour. Cave tours are 30, 60, or 90 minutes long. Longer tours go further along the same route than shorter tours. The full tour route is 0.54 miles round-trip. The First Room Tour (30 minutes) visits only the Gothic Palace, the first room in the cave. Because children under 5 years of age have a limited attention span, they are not permitted on the 90 minute tour. Cave tours are limited to 25 persons per tour. Cave tours often sell out during busy summer months. To ensure space, buy your tickets early in the day, or in advance over the telephone (775-234-7331 x242). Great Basin National Park is on Pacific Time. Fees vary with the length of the tour.

Safety Information
-The elevation at the cave entrance is 6,825 feet (2080m).
-There are steps and slopes along the cave tour route.
-Watch your head. Low ceilings may require frequent stooping.
-Trails may be wet and slippery.
-Shoes should have good traction.
-Watch your step and always use handrails where provided.
-Stay with your tour, as the ranger will turn off the lights as the group leaves an area.
- The cave is a constant 50 degrees F (10 degrees C). A light jacket or sweater is recommended.

Great Basin National Park is best explored by hiking. This is a park where it is possible to experience true solitude. Make sure you are prepared before starting any hike. Bring clothing for all types of weather, as weather may change rapidly, especially at high elevations. Eat and drink plenty while hiking. The trails listed below are only ideas to get you started. Rangers can recommend possible routes in even more remote areas of the park. Hiking cross-country can be an exciting challenge for the more experienced hikers and route-finders. Consider extending your hike by spending the night in the backcountry. Voluntary registration forms are at the visitor center. This is your park, please protect it. Always try to leave areas cleaner than how you found them.



Elevation Gain

Starting Elevation


Mountain View Nature Trail

0.3 miles
(0.4 km)

80 feet
(25 m)

6,825 feet
(2,080 m)

This is a leisurely walk in the pinyon-juniper forest. The trail guide (available for loan at the visitor center desk) describes the geology and ecology of the area. The trail starts at the Rhodes Cabin next to the visitor center.

Osceola Ditch Trail

0.3 miles
(0.4 km)

100 feet
(30 m)

8,400 feet
(2,620 m)

Begin at the signed pull-out on the Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive. Walk down slope through ponderosa pine, white fir and Douglas fir trees to the remnant of an 18 mile long channel built by gold miners in the 1880's.

Lexington Arch Trail

3.4 miles
(5.5 km)

820 feet
255 m

7,440 feet
2,320 m

This trail leads to a six-story limestone arch. The trail has some steep sections. The trailhead is outside of the park, about 30 miles (48 km) from the visitor center. The road is unpaved. Check at the visitor center for road conditions.

Alpine Lakes Loop Trail

2.7 miles
(4.4 km)

600 feet
(180 m)

9,800 feet
(2,990 m)

The trail passes two beautiful alpine lakes, Stella and Teresa Lakes. There are good views of Wheeler Peak. Begin at the Bristlecone Parking Area, near the Wheeler Peak Campground.

Bristlecone Trail

2.8 miles

600 feet
(180 m)

9,800 feet
(2,990 m)

Interpretive signs in the bristlecone pine grove explain the lives and significance of these ancient trees. Ranger-guided hikes on this trail are offered daily in season.

Bristlecone and Glacier Trail

4.6 miles
(7.4 km)

1,100 feet
(340 m)

9,800 feet
(2,990 m)

The Glacier Trail is the continuation of the Bristlecone Trail. It continues beyond the bristlecone pine grove to the only glacier in Nevada, nestled beneath Wheeler Peak.

Lehman Creek Trail

3.4 miles
(5.5 km)

2,050 feet
(620 m)

7,750 feet/9,800 feet
(2,360 m/2,990 m)

This trail can be accessed from trailheads in both the Wheeler Peak and Upper Lehman Creek Campgrounds. It passes through diverse habitats, paralleling a creek for parts of the trail.

Wheeler Peak Summit Trail

8.6 miles
(14 km)

2,900 feet
(890 m)

10,160 feet
(3,100 m)

This hike should be started very early in the day, because of the risk of afternoon storms. Along most of the route, the trail follows the ridge up to the Wheeler Peak summit. It is easiest to begin the hike from the Summit Trail parking area.

Baker Lake Trail

12.0 miles
(19.4 km)

2,620 feet
(800 m)

8,000 feet
(2,440 m)

The trail begins at the end of the Baker Creek Road. It offers nice views of the surrounding peaks and ends at Baker Lake, an alpine lake with beautiful cliffs behind it.

South Fork Baker Creek/
Johnson Lake

11.2 miles
(18.2 km)

2,740 feet
(840 m)

8,000 feet
(2,440 m)

This trail splits off from the Baker Lake Trail and follows the South Fork of Baker Creek. It then joins with the Johnson Lake Trail, passing historic Johnson Lake Mine structures just before reaching the lake.

Johnson Lake Trail (from Snake Creek

7.4 miles

2,420 feet

8,320 feet
(2,540 m)

Johnson Lake can also be reached by starting at the end of Snake Creek Road. This shorter, steeper route offers nice views of the Snake Creek drainage before reaching the historic Johnson Lake Mine area and the lake itself.

Baker Lake/ Johnson Lake Loop

13.1 miles
(21.1 km)

3,290 feet
(1010 m)

8,000 feet
(2,440 m)

The Baker Lake and Johnson Lake Trails can be combined as a loop hike. The connecting section is a steep route over the ridge between Baker and Johnson Lakes. The ridgetop offers spectacular views in all directions, including the south faces of Wheeler Peak and Baker Peak.

The Baker Lake and Johnson Lake Trails can be combined as a loop hike. The connecting section is a steep route over the ridge between Baker and Johnson Lakes. The ridgetop offers spectacular views in all directions, including the south faces of Wheeler Peak and Baker Peak.


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