• Bristlecone Pine

    Great Basin

    National Park Nevada

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Wheeler Peak Summit Trail Closed

    A small smoldering fire near the trail has caused the closure of the Wheeler Peak Summit Trail. park staff is observing the fire. Check back here to get an update whne the trail will open. Alpine Lakes Loop and Bristlecone Trail are open. More »

  • Road Work at Great Basin National Park

    Road work will begin in Upper Lehman and Wheeler Peak Campgrounds. Campgrounds will be open but may be noisy and have large vehicles on the roads. The Scenic Drive is open with up to 15 min delays due to road work. Click more for details. Updated 9/9/14 More »

  • Travel Not Recommended - Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive Above 8,000 Feet

    Snow and ice may make travel on Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive unsafe, travel is not recommended at this time. Warmer weather later in the week is expected and conditions may improve. Please check back. 9/29/2014

  • Snake Creek Road and Campsites Closed

    The Snake Creek Road will be closed from the park boundary into the park to begin work on campsites, trails and restroom improvements. Work will continue until snow closes the project. Work will resume in Spring 2015.

Nature & Science

Quicklinks
Great Basin National Park BioBlitz
Interested in exploring your national park? Come immerse yourself in this magnificent wilderness and help park staff locate and identify arachnids - maybe you can be part of the next big discovery here at Great Basin!

Recent Scientific Publications
Follow the most current research related to the Great Basin. Here you will find a sampling of the most up-to-date scholarly articles pertaining to this park.



 

The Diverse Great Basin
Imagine a place where hot desert valleys meet mountain ranges with peaks soaring above 13,000 feet. Where prickly pear cactus, sagebrush, aspen, fragile alpine wildflowers and ancient bristlecone pines grow. Where mountains lions, Clark's nutcrackers, snakes, and jackrabbits roam. Such a place exists, not just in your imagination, but in living color in the Great Basin Region of the western United States.

Great Basin National Park, and the larger region it represents, are diverse in both landforms and living things. Ranging in elevation from 5,000 - 13,000 feet, you will find deserts, playas, mountains, rock formations, fossils, springs, caves, creeks, and even a lone glacier.

Because the Great Basin exhibits such drastic elevation changes from its valleys to its peaks, the region supports an impressive diversity of plant and animal species, from those adapted to the desert to those adapted to forest and alpine environments. In Great Basin National Park and the neighboring valleys alone, there are 11 species of conifer trees, 73 species of mammals, 18 species of reptiles, 238 species of birds, 8 species of fish, and over 800 species of plants.

Great Basin National Park does not exist in a vacuum, however. Like all national parks, it faces environmental factors such as air quality threats, invasive species, and water issues, like nearby groundwater pumping.

Did You Know?

No water in the Great Basin Desert ever reaches an ocean.

The Hydrographic Great Basin is a 200,000 square mile area that drains internally. All precipitation in this region evaporates, sinks underground, or flows into lakes. No water reaches the ocean.