NV – Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge (05/22)

As they say timing is everything, and as I continued my jaunt eastward trying to stay ahead of a storm, I found myself in very windy conditions. As one can imagine wind and sand don’t offer the most welcoming conditions.

What once was Sheldon National Antelope Refuge and Range is now Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge.

This 900 square mile refuge is an interesting place. It doesn’t have designated hiking trails but it offers plenty of opportunities for wandering and exploring. I’d planned to spend a few days but Mother Nature had other ideas.

I had planned to hike up to the gorge rim but the wind and dust made that less than inviting but I still found places to wander.

I found a few beauties.

There’s no doubt this is a birder’s paradise. I enjoyed watching and listening.


I continued my travels eastward stopping at The California Trail Interpretative Center.

Behind the interpretive center is a nice trail to stretch your legs and get a view down to the Humboldt River and across at the Ruby Mountains, where I backpacked a few years ago (blog link).

I also found a few blooms.

Blue Bells
Sand Lilies

I found the Peace Park in Elko another nice place to wander.

I found a nearby place to disperse camp which seemed appropriate as it was part of the Wagon Trail.


  • Camping is free at the designated campgrounds at Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, but be prepared for a group camp environment in a sandy, windy, dust bowl. This might not be the case at the more remote campgrounds but it’s true at Virgin Valley. Also drinking water was not available during my visit. Visitors were enjoying the campground hot springs fed pool.


I would have loved chatting with the owner(s) of this vehicle who were obviously on a very long jaunt. I found this van at a rest area and I presume they were sleeping. I’ve been following a couple of gals who have been experiencing something similar but by foot, bike and boat (https://www.her-odyssey.org/).

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