BEST AREAS FOR WILDERNESS CAMPING
TOIYABE NATIONAL FOREST
3,212,545 acres in Nevada (3,855,960 total). This truly enormous National Forest is comprised of several units in central and southern Nevada, along with one tract in California. It’s the largest National Forest in the country outside of Alaska.
Scenery includes high and spectacular alpine peaks with elevations over 11,000 feet, mountain meadows, deep rugged canyons and cliffs, desert brushlands with cactus and yucca, plus numerous streams, rivers, and lakes.
There are forests of lodgepole and Jeffrey pine, fir, and aspen. Also here is a large area of bris-tlecone pine, the earth’s most ancient living trees, some of which are thought to be nearly 5,000 years old. Mule deer, wild horse, elk, black bear, bighorn sheep, mountain lion, and bobcat are among the wildlife.
Six designated wilderness areas are found in the Nevada portions of this National Forest: the
115,000-acre Arc Dome Wilderness, the 98,000-acre Table Mountain Wilderness, the 43,000-acre Mount Charleston Wilderness, the 38,000-acre Alta Toquima Wilderness, the 28,000-acre Mount Rose Wilderness, and the 10,000-acre Boundary Peak Wilderness.
Activities: There are approximately 1,165 miles of trails for backpacking and hiking, including the 72-mile Toiyabe Crest National Recreation Trail, and also a section of the new Tahoe Rim Trail. Difficulty varies from easy to strenuous.
Horseback riding is allowed on many trails, and mountain biking is possible outside of designated wilderness areas. Some trails are suitable for
cross-country skiing during winter. Climbing and mountaineering are available as well. Fishing is another option, and hunting is permitted in season.
Camping Regulations: Camping is allowed freely throughout most of the National Forest, as are campfires, except near public use areas or where otherwise prohibited. No permits are required.
For Further Information: Toiyabe National Forest, 1200 Franklin Way, Sparks, NV 89431; (702)355-5302.