Between the Sevier Dessert in Utah and Ely, Nevada US50
crosses three summit points. Two of them are named passes.
This is the most westerly of the three, also the most
forested, least dessert like and the highest of the three.
It affords great far views of Wheeler Peak in Great Basin
START-END EAST: jct NV893 - US50
2.(6370ft,mile01.5) jct US50 - US93, Great Basin Hwy
4.(6620ft,mile21.0) Nv486 on right goes to Cave Lake
5.(6430ft,mile28.3) START-END WEST: Ely, jct US50 -
From East. Spring Valley, where this approach starts,
is arguably the scenically, most interesting spot along the
entire route. But every time I have been here, it has also been
the most windy. A hot dessert wind blows up from the south,
flowing up a valley, shaped like a giant rain gutter.
Starting the shallow climb up the alluvial fans to the
entrance of the canyon improves the view point onto the
surrounding scenery drastically. US50 does this between the
junction with Osceola Road and a location called Majors Place on
Majors Place is a bar. Entering it feels like descending int
a civilized cave of sorts, with dollars pinned to the walls,
compared to the bright hot outside during June. They are
friendly enough to fill up my water bottles - thank you. I
imagine every cyclist passing along stops here for water, so
they may get tired of it at some point.
From here the road enters Juniper Forest and gradually gains
the top, needing only large radius curves. The wind here is
often straight from the west, which makes climbing slower. Two
spots lend themselves to admiring Wheeler Peak, across the
valley in the Snake Range. Immediately below is the road bed of
a former pass crossing. The top is a forested expanse with dirt
roads and piles of road construction materials on both sides of
From South. (described downwards). Not much happening
on this side scenically - just a bunch of juniper trees.
Mysteriously, the shoulder starts to be rumble stripped part
ways down this side. I don't understand the logic behind this.
Are drivers more likely to fall asleep behind the wheel, as they
approach towns the size of Ely, or is there some sort of logic
applied that says cyclists are supposed to ride in the middle of
traffic as they approach towns. But what am I complaining about
? I wonder how the guy, towing the three wheel trailer, filled
with camping equipment across the country felt like.
In any case, luckily traffic is so sparse, that the whole
point is a little academic. A long slightly downward sloping
ramp delivers the cyclist to Ely, often in record speed. The
wind has always been from the south when I was on this road.
A Dayride with this point as intermediate summit is
on page: FR59436 Cooper