Nevada Photography and Travel Guide - Northeastern Nevada

Nevada Photography and Travel Guide - Northeastern Nevada

northeast nevada travel guide image Photo by Elizabeth M. Ruggiero via iStock

Northeastern Nevada presents photographers with a wide range of subject matter.

From desolate deserts to bustling cities to national parks to ghost towns, it's an interesting and lonely place.

Best known for Highway 50, the loneliest highway in the world, as well as Elko, the Ruby Mountains, and Great Basin National Park, northeastern Nevada is certainly a place worth exploring and getting lost amongst the breathtaking landscapes.

This travel and photography guide for northeastern Nevada offers you some insights into what to see and photograph, where to stay, and what to eat.

What to Photograph in Northeastern Nevada - Highway 50

nevada photography guide image Photo by Boogich via iStock

Though Highway 50 stretches across the entire United States - from West Sacramento, California to Ocean City, Maryland - its best-known stretch is perhaps that in Nevada.

A long, ribbon of tarmac, Highway 50 takes you through some of the most desolate areas in the Continental United States. There are many stretches in which there are few - if any - signs of civilization.

But the highway winds its way through some of Nevada's most iconic locations - Lake Tahoe and Carson City, alpine forests, ghost towns, desert valleys, and Great Basin National Park as well.

nevada high desert picture id178568504 image Photo by Gunter_Nezhoda via iStock

Planning Your Highway 50 Trip

  • Where to Stay: The La Quinta Inn & Suites Ely is clean and affordable. And since Ely is the last town for 162 miles as you travel west on Highway 50, it's really the only place to stay!
  • Where to Eat: If you're looking for good down-to-earth food and a large selection of drinks, give Racks Bar & Grill in Ely a try.
  • Must-See Attractions: The Nevada Northern Railway Museum is a must-see for train enthusiasts. The night sky-themed train ride is highly recommended.
  • Check the weather in Ely right now.

The Ruby Mountains are a Photographer's Paradise

ruby mountains island lake vista picture id91186734 image Photo by Joesboy via iStock 

Tucked in northeastern Nevada about 21 miles southeast of Elko, the Ruby Mountains are one of the most beautiful mountain ranges in the state.

Known for their abundances of wildlife, the Rubies offer spectacular views of mountains, lakes, valleys, and streams as well.

You can hike the Ruby Crest National Recreation Trail that takes you along the spine of the range or visit the Ruby National Wildlife Refuge to scope out migratory birds. The Ruby Mountains Wilderness is a must-see as well, with over 90,000 acres of protected landscapes to delight your eye and serve as subject matter for your photos. 

back country solitude picture id683329830 image Photo by Justin R. Ray via iStock

Planning Your Ruby Mountains Trip

  • Where to Stay: The Best Western Elko Inn has excellent reviews and is centrally located on the eastern edge of Elko, giving you easy access to local attractions and restaurants.
  • Where to EatThe Star Hotel gets rave reviews for its authentic Basque menu.
  • Must-See Attractions: The tiny hamlet of Lamoille, located at the base of the Rubies, is nestled along a creek amongst mature trees and is home to a postcard-worthy church - Little Church of the Crossroads - that's a must-see.
  • Check the weather at the Ruby Mountains right now.

Get Lost With Your Camera in Great Basin National Park

sunrise on wheeler peak nevadas great basin national park horizontal picture id155100218 image Photo by milehightraveler via iStock

Though Great Basin National Park might not have the name recognition of Yellowstone or Yosemite, it certainly doesn't short you on opportunities to take breathtaking landscape photos.

From the majestic Wheeler Peak to the mysterious Lehman Caves, there are landforms aplenty that will astonish you.

This area is also home to ancient Bristlecone pines that make ideal subjects for your photos.

A can't-miss photo op in this region is night photography, thanks to crystal clear skies that reveal a blanket of stars over the basin on most nights throughout the year.

bristlecone pine black white picture id969408036 image Photo by johnnya123 via iStock

Planning Your Great Basin National Park Photography Trip

  • Where to Stay: The Stargazer Inn has excellent reviews and is one of the closest motels to the park.
  • Where to EatKerouac's Restaurant at the Stargazer Inn offers fresh takes on American classics and is open seasonally, April-October.
  • Must-See Attractions: The Lehman Caves are a spectacular sight that can't be missed when in Great Basin National Park. Tours run daily throughout the year and are led by park rangers that explain the history and geology of the caves. Make reservations early though, as the tours often sell out.
  • Check the weather at Great Basin National right now.

This Nevada Photography and Travel Guide is Sponsored By:

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SIRUI Tripods


SIRUI has built a solid reputation over the years for crafting precise, easy-to-use, feature-packed tripods for photographers of all types and experience levels.

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From ball heads to quick-release clamps, video heads to camera and lens plates, Acratech crafts some of the highest-quality photography gear on the market today.

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Columbia Sportswear

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Whether you're exploring the desert southwest in the summer, the far reaches of Scandinavia in the winter, or points between, Columbia Sportswear has the gear you need to be comfortable on your photography adventures.

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Kenko Filters

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Kenko filters are precision-crafted with high-quality materials to give you the best photographic results.

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