Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Campground Review: Disbursed Camping in the Moapa Valley, NV Along Sand Mine Road

Temperatures in Arizona continued to rise so I headed northwest up into Nevada's Moapa Valley to BLM land along Sand Mine Road seeking cooler climate.  Moapa Valley runs northwest to southeast and is situated in Clark County about 30 miles northeast of Las Vegas.  The valley was originally settled by the Anasazi people around 350 BC.  In the late-1860's the first white people, Mormon pioneers, immigrated into the valley. 

You don't need 4 wheel drive if you stay close to the road.

I did my now practiced routine of finding the first place along the road, parking the rig there and then proceeding on foot to find the best available site in the area.  I found a pretty good one about a half mile further along Sand Mine Road.

The Mini's desert site about 50 yards off Sand Mine Road.

Here's the Sand Mine Road data sheet:

Hookups:                                             None (Dry camping)                                                  
Fire ring:                                              Yes                                                                 
Water Access:                                     No                                                                  
Fresh Water:                                        No                                                      
Trash Service:                                      No (Pack in/Pack out)                                                
Toilets:                                                 No                                                                  
Showers:                                             No                                                                              
Dump station:                                      No                                                      
WiFi:                                                    No                                                      
Level sites:                                          Yes                                         
Laundry:                                              No                                                      
Store:                                                   No                                                                              
Pool:                                                    No                                                      
Shade:                                                 No                                                      
Verizon reception:                               4G, 4 bars                                                       
Internet reception:                               4 bars
Cost:                                                    Free for up to 15 days

Initially, temperatures during the cloudless days were in the low to mid-80's and nights were in the mid-50's, pretty ideal!  I did my daily walking along Sand Mine Road which is mostly hard packed dirt and gravel.

Sand Mine "Road".

My site was pretty secluded even though it was out in the open desert, my nearest neighbor was a half mile away, then he left two days in and my next nearest was about a mile away.

This canyon separated my camp area from another further north.
Some of the cacti in the area were flowering.

One of the things I really appreciate about desert camping is the virtual absence of flying insects of any kind.  Often while camping in forests you have to hurry in and out of the trailer to avoid flys, or worse, mosquitoes flying in the open door, not so in the desert!

I called this area along my walk "The Badlands".

I got to Sand Mine Road around the middle of April and as I mentioned for the first week the weather was just ideal with the bonus of cloud-free days providing great sun for the Mini's solar setup.  I intended to stay the whole 15 day limit but unfortunately the second week the temperatures spiked into the mid to high 90's after extremely high winds blew in a warm front.

High winds blew over the solar suitcase so I had to lay it almost flat.

With Lin's Grocery, a full service grocery store, only seven miles away in Overton, NV it's very possible to complete the whole 15 day stay along Sand Mine Road without running out of supplies.  Next year I might come a couple weeks earlier in the season and avoid the heat and make the full 15 days, the peaceful uncrowded nature of the campsites coupled with the excellent cellular coverage make it worth it!

Thanks for reading! 

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