NCA Transportation Maps - Motorized Roads and Trails
Transportation Maps for the Black Rock Desert - High Rock Canyon
Emigrant Trails National Conservation Area
Please recreate responsibly and protect public land resources and your recreation opportunities. There are over 900 miles of designated roads and trails in the National Conservation Area that are available for your use. Careless Off Highway Vehicle (OHV) behavior is the major cause of negative publicity towards OHV use and can cause damage to resources and jeopardize safety. Inconsiderate OHV use can cause thousands of acres to be closed to the enjoyment of all visitors.
Click on the map below to view detailed JPEG maps of the NCA motorized road and trail system. See below for PDF.
Things You Should Know The playa is open for use by OHVs; visitors can drive anywhere on the flat and un-vegetated playa.
The dunes and hummocks surrounding the playa are closed. Off of the playa, vehicle travel is allowed only on the designated roads and trails shown on the transportation maps.
Wilderness areas are closed to OHV use Wilderness Boundaries and Wilderness Access Roads.
Ten wilderness areas were designated in 2000 in the Black Rock region. On the maps, it might appear as though some of them touch. The wilderness areas that seem to touch are actually separated by roads that are not part of the wilderness areas. The same is true for several “cherry stem” roads that allow access to the interior of the wilderness areas. Since these roads are not part of the wilderness areas they separate or penetrate, they are open for vehicle use. For example, the road through High Rock Canyon separates the High Rock Canyon Wilderness Area from the East Fork High Rock Canyon Wilderness Area. Only designated routes (shown in green) are open.
Wilderness Access routes are marked open with signs.
Seasonal Road Closure:
The road through High Rock Canyon is closed from the end of the Chukar hunting season (about the first of February) until the second weekend in May. This closure is to prevent disturbance during the raptor breeding and bighorn sheep lambing seasons, and to prevent damage to the road and emigrant trail through the canyon.
!CAUTION! - TIPS FOR DRIVING IN BLACKROCK COUNTRY
Come Prepared –This is a very remote region. There are no services in the NCA. Fuel, food and supplies are only available in Gerlach, Wadsworth, Nixon, Empire, Cedarville, Lovelock, and Winnemucca. The Soldier Meadows Guest Ranch provides food and lodging with advanced registration. Always travel with a full-size spare tire (at least 6-ply is recommended). High clearance and/or 4WD is recommended.
The Black Rock Desert Playa is impassable when wet, but is generally passable during the summer season. However, beware when traveling on the Playa even when the surface appears to be dry, because it may be wet beneath the surface and become impassable to vehicles. Check with local residents and businesses or BLM for up-to-date conditions. Most roads and trails are not regularly maintained, are unsigned, and are seldom traveled. Avoid traveling solo in areas where help is not available; use the buddy system. There is no cell phone service in the NCA.
Water is scarce in the region, bring plenty with you (minimum 1 gallon per/day per/person).
Maps are also available from the following BLM offices:
Honor the Tread Lightly! Pledge!!
Travel only where motorized vehicles are permitted
Respect the rights of others to enjoy their activities undisturbed
Educate yourself by obtaining maps and regulations, and respect private lands
Avoid streams, meadows, muddy roads and trails, springs and riparian habitat, wildlife, livestock and steep hillsides
Drive and travel responsibly to protect the environment and preserve opportunities to enjoy motorized vehicle use on public lands