kid friendly


nature trips



wild flowers


no dogs

Based around Wheeler Peak, the Great Basin has 5,000-year-old bristlecone pines, glacial moraines, and the limestone Lehman Caves. It has some of the country's darkest skies and animal species including Townsend's big-eared bat, Pronghorn, and Bonneville cutthroat trout.

3 days ago

Moderate would be a better description. If you do it only one way - bottom to top. The other way you have to keep turning back to see the water coming down rocks. But, do it both ways and you won't miss anything.

8 days ago

Spring route itinerary (see photo for approx trail),
nicer option is to park at Lehman Creek.
Really good for feeling alone at the middle of nowhere!
Note: Consult current conditions with a ranger grba_interpretation@nps.gov

The 1h warmup was a gentle road closed due to snow.

Then I’ve tried to follow the trail and failed. But that’s ok, as everything was covered in snow anyway. Before going sharply up, I’ve reached a lake with a stream and filtered some water. While enjoying the calm meadow, I've realized my big mistake. Looking from the parking lot, my theory was to climb the mountain on the exposed rocks instead of the snow - so I left my crampons, ice-axe and snow shoes in the car.
In practice, climbing the loose rock would be strenuous, so I’ve decided to walk up a big snow patch in a slab. Luckily wasn't too steep, snow was melted and stiff just right to make safe steps. Still, I made sure I can stop from sliding down too excitingly either by braking or hitting a rock pitch. In conclusion, it was a mistake and should’ve brought my gear.

So I was steadily climbing up, 10,000ft, 11,000ft … and the elevation hit me at this point. It resulted in a considerable slowdown - was able to make maybe 20 steps after a 30sec+ pause. But I was committed, persisted and slowly, I've reached the ridge.
Half of ridge-to-peak was super ok, big rocks, even exposed trail. The other half, steeper hike just before the peak felt a little dangerous, as falling to the right would result into a 500m slide (maybe stoppable, but wouldn't risk), while falling on left might be ok, but after ~20m, there was a big cliff.
In this moment your brain autoplays all similar experiences and what went wrong. For example when you were climbing Triglav and slipped, when your friend slid and died or the movie "80m below the peak", where they decided to turn back after days of climbing just below the dreaded K2 (that was a good decision).
Caring this in my mind and confirming that sticking to the big rocks is safe, I’ve decided it will be fine up. Had a snack, looked down, said "oh shit" and started climbing carefully down. Thanked God when reached the lower ridge.
After the surface evened out, it was a pretty fun down. I just slid the whole snowy slab in ~15 minutes (going up took me well over 2h).

As my time was fine, I've decided to take the adventurous route back, i.e. go straight back. While walking on snow, it was fast. Crossed the official trail and decided not to take it. But then I reached some nasty bushes and even if following trails of wildlife, I just couldn't fit through the dense grow. So I had to back up a lot, go around, found some nice patches and then seeing the parking lot, I’ve thought: “How the hell will I get up?”
Decided on a way I thought is doable, and halfway up I've reached an unofficial human trail.

11 days ago

Great for kids! Been coming here for 45 years, bring my own kids now. Don't miss this gem or the caves down at the upper visitor center.

I am so confused by the mileage noted here and the mileage noted on Park newspaper. You note it's 4.7 miles, park map says 2.7 out and back. Our GPS more closely resembles the park mileage. We did combine with Bristlecone trail and totaled about 4.2 miles total. Anyway, we loved this hike. We did run into snow from Stella Lake to Teresa Lake so it was a little difficult to navigate our way and also snow in Bristlecone that did get a bit slippery but was well worth it!!!

13 days ago

27 days ago

Pole Canyon Trail begins off of the Grey Cliff Campground road, a gravel road easily accessible to passenger vehicles. The trailhead has a picnic area and pit toilet, and enough parking for a small number of vehicles. The trail ascends gradually along a creek through riparian forest and passing rocky cliffs before opening into meadows within a wide mountain valley. If completing the loop, the trail ascends to more mountainous trails along Baker Creek, but this portion of the trail is in reality the Baker Creek trail system. The Pole Canyon portion of the trail can also be a very easy out and back without completing the loop. The trail is quite scenic and beautiful and traverses many habitat types. It is also considerably easier than many of the much steeper trails in Great Basin National Park.

1 month ago

1 month ago

3 months ago

Snow stop us.

6 months ago

I was a bit hesitant to take this hike after reading some of the reviews, but I'll say this: for the average person with limited hiking experience, the guided 60 minute tour should be fun and adventurous without much demand from your body. The caves are partially lit, with graded and paved walkways, and staircases with railings. The tours are mainly informative, but also allow time to take pictures and video. Spend the $30 and do it.

This was definitely one the most interesting mountains I've summitted. From the bristlecone forests in the first two miles of the hike to the last rocky mile, there was always something to be amazed by on this trail.

The wind as you cross into the rocky last section of the trail is brutal, and you will want at least 3 layers to protect yourself from wind chill. Currently, there is a bit of snow approaching the summit, but the trail is still fairly clear. Keep this in mind when preparing for this hike, though - added with the wind, I wished that I had brought gloves and a hat.

At about 1 mile into the hike, the trail splits off - one way towards the summit, the other towards Stella Lake (only .1 miles away). If you have a few minutes to spare, check it out, it's gorgeous. I went around 7:30 and the lake was partially frozen over. As the trail to the summit climbs, you can actually see Stella Lake from above, and from the summit you can see all 3 alpine lakes.

There and back, the hike took me about 7 hours (that's including the Stella Lake detour, lunch at the summit, and plenty of picture taking time). Very worth it, and a must do in Great Basin.