Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

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Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Fabricator » Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:40 am

Trying to get to BRC from Ohio in the shortest route without using I80. With reason.
I can take I70 and am interested in leaving I70 in Utah, just south of Salt Lake City.
I can pick up Route 50 there and take it all the way to Fernley NV. I can get 400 miles between fuel stops easy, and it will make my trip from Ohio only 100 miles longer overall (one-way)
Great.

However I cannot find enough recent internet info on the status of the road.
Wikipedia has information on the road and describes it's once designation as "The Loneliest road in America" and comments on rumored sightings of ghosts of Chinese miners killed in a mine decades ago, ghost towns, and long desolate stretches.
Guess I'm fine with all that, on the surface.

WHAT I DON'T WANT is Route 50 to be the one place I end up with car trouble, and then find out I'm the next story-base for "The Hills Have Eyes, part 3" "House of Wax 2" (or etc.)
My AAA membership isn't worth having if I can't call them from my van, or if their response time is like 8 hours.
I remembering National Lampoon's Vacation. The sheriff/mechanic's shop owner slapping the wrench in his palm saying sternly, "...and I'm asking you how much you got!"
Not like I'll be able to get the eleven cents out of Aunt Edna's purse to compensate me.

Any experiences? Hills or grades reasonable?
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Simon of the Playa » Thu Aug 18, 2011 8:44 am

there are some LONG stretches out there...you may not see another human for a few hours if you break down. It's Gorgeous, and i Love the Drive, but i would do it on the way back if your nervous about mechanical failure, at least you'll get to the burn, have a great time, and THEN on your way home get asked to squeal like a pig as you're down on all fours 20 miles outside of Ely.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby viajera80 » Thu Aug 18, 2011 10:29 am

Hwy 50 through NV is one of my all-time favorite drives. It's very empty and it might even be really green this year with all the rain and snow we got this winter and spring. Nevada is a huge state and the drive might take you about 8-9 hours. There are very few towns (about every 200 miles or so) and the biggest are probably Ely and Austin. Drivers on 50 know that the road can be a ghost town, so if they see someone who is broke down, they will stop and help. Cell phone coverage is spotty and the sides of the road can be soft or non-existent. If you do take this route, gas up at every town you see, and if you want free camping, there is a great place outside of Austin called Hickison Petroglyph. The road itself is in excellent shape, but be careful driving at night.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby The CO » Thu Aug 18, 2011 11:12 am

I took that route in 1996 on the way to the burn. It lives up to it's name. Haven't been across it since.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby illy dilly » Thu Aug 18, 2011 11:22 am

Its not exactly what your asking but I just posted in another thread that is very similar.
I really know nothing about Hwy-50. But here is some info about I80vsI70, FWIW.
http://eplaya.burningman.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=45597
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby ygmir » Thu Aug 18, 2011 12:52 pm

I drove it 4 times in the last month, out and back to CO from here (northern CA).

nice drive, IMHO. seems somewhat traveled, you'd not be stranded all day, if broken. Lots of cyclists and walkers.
I like it more than I80, and, from here to central CO, it's exaclty the same time.
Cell reception is spotty.
Good little eateries.
Good views.
Good banjo players.
Good swine calling instructors.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby illy dilly » Thu Aug 18, 2011 5:12 pm

ygmir wrote:I drove it 4 times in the last month, out and back to CO from here (northern CA).

nice drive, IMHO. seems somewhat traveled, you'd not be stranded all day, if broken. Lots of cyclists and walkers.
I like it more than I80, and, from here to central CO, it's exaclty the same time.
Cell reception is spotty.
Good little eateries.
Good views.
Good banjo players.
Good swine calling instructors.

Only Yggy!

Yggy, why have you had to drive back and forth so often lately? Are you a interstate truck driver?

Now for the real question, you were in CO and you didn't even try to say hello?
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Dr Jet Sinister » Thu Aug 18, 2011 5:55 pm

The best pie in the world can be found at the Rancher Cafe in Delta. Other than that, not an interesting drive unless you're just sick of your usual route.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby ygmir » Thu Aug 18, 2011 9:22 pm

illy dilly wrote:
ygmir wrote:I drove it 4 times in the last month, out and back to CO from here (northern CA).

nice drive, IMHO. seems somewhat traveled, you'd not be stranded all day, if broken. Lots of cyclists and walkers.
I like it more than I80, and, from here to central CO, it's exaclty the same time.
Cell reception is spotty.
Good little eateries.
Good views.
Good banjo players.
Good swine calling instructors.

Only Yggy!

Yggy, why have you had to drive back and forth so often lately? Are you a interstate truck driver?

Now for the real question, you were in CO and you didn't even try to say hello?


nope, family stuff.......and, I was in Durango, making the trip from Colfax, CA to Durango in one shot, 20 ish hours.
Had I the time, I had thought to post who's around Denver, because, I wanted to scoot up there and take I70 back through the tunnel and Glenwood canyon, again. But, alas, no time for that.
I really appreciate the thought, though.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sail Man » Mon Aug 22, 2011 11:46 am

We plan on doing the route on the way home. 50 to 70 with a left in Indy (aren't they all lefts at Indy?) :wink: and back up into Michigan.

It will be interesting to go from 50000+ in BRC to driving the loneliest road in america.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby StevenGoodman » Mon Aug 22, 2011 2:11 pm

Nice drive.

Headed west make sure to get gas in Ely. Headed east get gas in Fallon.

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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sic Pup » Mon Aug 22, 2011 4:56 pm

Here is a blow-by-blow of towns/attractions on 50 from SF to Chesapeake Bay. I looked at it last year but didn't pull the trigger. This thread has convinved me to take 50 on the way home. I'm still debating whether to veer off 70 to 76 in Co back onto 80 in Nebraska (NE or KS, pick your poison) or to stay on 70 and hit KC and St Louis on the way back to NY.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Igneouss » Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:18 am

Drove out on 50 in 2011. It was great. But I like desolate places - find them beautiful.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sail Man » Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:11 pm

Simon of the Playa wrote:there are some LONG stretches out there...you may not see another human for a few hours if you break down. It's Gorgeous, and i Love the Drive, but i would do it on the way back if your nervous about mechanical failure, at least you'll get to the burn, have a great time, and THEN on your way home get asked to squeal like a pig as you're down on all fours 20 miles outside of Ely.


Approx 20 miles to the east of Ely is Majors Station where we stopped for a couple beers and burgers. It was a most awesome stop in the middle of nowhere and they are now sporting our dollar bill, near the bathrooms :lol:
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sail Man » Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:14 pm

ygmir wrote:I drove it 4 times in the last month, out and back to CO from here (northern CA).

nice drive, IMHO. seems somewhat traveled, you'd not be stranded all day, if broken. Lots of cyclists and walkers.
I like it more than I80, and, from here to central CO, it's exaclty the same time.
Cell reception is spotty.
Good little eateries.
Good views.
Good banjo players.
Good swine calling instructors.


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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sail Man » Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:17 pm

If we were going to the burn in 12 we would do it again. I kept driving by all these mostly dirt roads with a towns name leading off to the hills and really wanted to check some of them out but towing a camper I didn't want to get in somewhere where I couldn't turn around. We will get back to that area to explore further sometime though. In Utah we hooked up with 70 and it was a most scenic drive and convinced us we def. need to go back and check out that part of the country. Oh, and bring more money for the Native Americans selling arts and crafts at the rest stops.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Just_Joe » Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:25 pm

Sail Man wrote:If we were going to the burn in 12 we would do it again. I kept driving by all these mostly dirt roads with a towns name leading off to the hills and really wanted to check some of them out but towing a camper I didn't want to get in somewhere where I couldn't turn around. We will get back to that area to explore further sometime though. In Utah we hooked up with 70 and it was a most scenic drive and convinced us we def. need to go back and check out that part of the country. Oh, and bring more money for the Native Americans selling arts and crafts at the rest stops.

I did the drive for the umteenth time last weekend. This trip was different in that I had TWO blowouts on my utility trailer which has (had) no spare. The first was only 5 miles outside of Austin and I had the pleasure of meeting the proprietor of the town salvage yard. The second blowout was a bit more of a delay- It happened 60 miles outside of Ely. While my son went into town for a new tire, I spent three AWESOME hours, isolated in a desert in the middle of nowhere. I'd say fewer than ten cars passed me before my kiddo returned just at sunset.
Planting the travel trailer out there for a few days is on my "must do" list for the summer.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Dr. Pyro » Thu Jan 12, 2012 8:40 am

Please do not take this as snark. It seems to me, after the first blowout and therefore you knew you didn't have a spare, why didn't you just get a spare right then and there when you got fixed in Austin? Just in case (as it turns out) you needed it? You weren't an Eagle Scout I'm willing to bet.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Just_Joe » Thu Jan 12, 2012 10:19 am

Dr. Pyro wrote:Please do not take this as snark. It seems to me, after the first blowout and therefore you knew you didn't have a spare, why didn't you just get a spare right then and there when you got fixed in Austin? Just in case (as it turns out) you needed it? You weren't an Eagle Scout I'm willing to bet.

Taken as presented. <g> The population of Austin, NV is about 300. There weren't a lot of options, lonliest highway and all. Ray the salvage guy had exactly one used 15" tire and no rims (I asked, we looked). I DID purchase two "newer" used tires in Ely, and Ray's is now my spare.

Like I said "I spent three AWESOME hours, isolated in a desert in the middle of nowhere."
I put in a lot of time wandering the US via thumb and broken down vehicles as a kid. Hanging out in the desert was just like the old days.

You are correct. I only made it to Life Scout. The son that was with me is an Eagle, so I'll place some of the blame on him.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:12 pm

weather man wrote:A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.

So, the overlap between scout and burner-->not very much...
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Just_Joe » Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:41 pm

theCryptofishist wrote:
weather man wrote:A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.

So, the overlap between scout and burner-->not very much...


Excellent.
That reminds me- I still have a "loan to Fishy in 2012" Post-it on my Honda Genny.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Bin Noddin » Fri Jan 13, 2012 8:50 pm

It's a beautiful road. Go, but be ready.
As for the "lonely" part - I saw a bicyclist at the side of the road and stopped to see if he needed anything. He didn't, but we chatted for a while and it turned out we lived not too far from each other, near DC.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby ^Rhino! » Sat Jan 21, 2012 6:45 pm

" The population of Austin, NV is about 300."

hmmm.....Reese mining district. Gold, now mined out.

Interesting place, though. Did you see the Gridley Store? Reuel Colt Gridley was a grocer and a classmate of Samuel Langhorne Clemens a.k.a. Mark Twain back in the 18whatevers.... There's a story with serious history there.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sail Man » Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:07 pm

weather man wrote:
Sail Man wrote:If we were going to the burn in 12 we would do it again. I kept driving by all these mostly dirt roads with a towns name leading off to the hills and really wanted to check some of them out but towing a camper I didn't want to get in somewhere where I couldn't turn around. We will get back to that area to explore further sometime though. In Utah we hooked up with 70 and it was a most scenic drive and convinced us we def. need to go back and check out that part of the country. Oh, and bring more money for the Native Americans selling arts and crafts at the rest stops.

I did the drive for the umteenth time last weekend. This trip was different in that I had TWO blowouts on my utility trailer which has (had) no spare. The first was only 5 miles outside of Austin and I had the pleasure of meeting the proprietor of the town salvage yard. The second blowout was a bit more of a delay- It happened 60 miles outside of Ely. While my son went into town for a new tire, I spent three AWESOME hours, isolated in a desert in the middle of nowhere. I'd say fewer than ten cars passed me before my kiddo returned just at sunset.
Planting the travel trailer out there for a few days is on my "must do" list for the summer.


I remember that salvage yard. Made me want to stop and explore it a bit. I will def. be checking out that road again.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Just_Joe » Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:37 pm

^Rhino! wrote: Did you see the Gridley Store? Reuel Colt Gridley was a grocer and a classmate of Samuel Langhorne Clemens a.k.a. Mark Twain back in the 18whatevers.... There's a story with serious history there.

I always give The Gridley Store a nod when passing. I tracked down a copy of Twain's "Roughing it" when I relocated here from Austin, TEXAS.
Great book. Here's the story
http://books.google.com/books?id=BKgvAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA316&dq=reuel+gridley+sanitary+flour+sack&hl=en&sa=X&ei=m6ocT-iDBeGQiQLu4_GtDw&ved=0CFEQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=reuel%20gridley%20sanitary%20flour%20sack&f=false
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Just_Joe » Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:38 pm

Sail Man wrote:I remember that salvage yard. Made me want to stop and explore it a bit. I will def. be checking out that road again.

Just a heads up... the school bus in the back corner needs a LOT of work :)
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Sail Man » Wed Jan 25, 2012 9:47 am

weather man wrote:
Sail Man wrote:I remember that salvage yard. Made me want to stop and explore it a bit. I will def. be checking out that road again.

Just a heads up... the school bus in the back corner needs a LOT of work :)


LOL, I remember passing a few salvage yards sporting a wide variety of old vehicles, many of which in passing made me think they could become awesome mutant vehicles, if one had the talent and room for work, as well as the time, none of which I really have.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Marscrumbs » Wed Jan 25, 2012 4:02 pm

My sister use to live in Eureka Nevada in the middle of the State. It is isolated, but not by Nevada standerd. It's not a vulture picking your bones route, It is regularly traveled with cars every few minutes but not many services. The Loneliest Road is a Nevada State Touristry designation. If you want real isolation try the Extraterestial Highway 375 through Rachel Nevada.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby Saguache » Wed Jan 25, 2012 10:11 pm

Fabricator wrote:WHAT I DON'T WANT is Route 50 to be the one place I end up with car trouble, and then find out I'm the next story-base for "The Hills Have Eyes, part 3" "House of Wax 2" (or etc.)
My AAA membership isn't worth having if I can't call them from my van, or if their response time is like 8 hours.
I remembering National Lampoon's Vacation. The sheriff/mechanic's shop owner slapping the wrench in his palm saying sternly, "...and I'm asking you how much you got!"
Not like I'll be able to get the eleven cents out of Aunt Edna's purse to compensate me.

Any experiences? Hills or grades reasonable?


Route 50 passes through the town I live in and proceeds more or less directly to Reno. Leaving 50 means one of two things to me, either I'm on an interstate (which is about as much fun as shaving my head with a cheese grater) or I've located something really special north or south of the route. Yes, 50 is very spare. But then again pretty much everything that's going to get you to BRC by crossing NV from east to west is equally spare. Same goes for hills, you'll be crossing the Great Basin and several ranges, but compared to crossing Colorado the drive will be easy. Take the time to make certain your car isn't going to break down, we want to see you at BM. And for goodness sakes, if you see me along side the road please stop and help.
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Re: Anyone traveled Route 50 across Nevada?

Postby ^Rhino! » Fri Jan 27, 2012 10:07 pm

[quote="weather man"][quote="^Rhino!"] Did you see the Gridley Store? Reuel Colt Gridley was a grocer and a classmate of Samuel Langhorne Clemens a.k.a. Mark Twain back in the 18whatevers.... There's a story with serious history there.[/quote]
I always give The Gridley Store a nod when passing. I tracked down a copy of Twain's "Roughing it" when I relocated here from Austin, TEXAS.
Great book. Here's the story
[url]http://books.google.com/books?id=BKgvAAAAMAAJ&pg=PA316&dq=reuel+gridley+sanitary+flour+sack&hl=en&sa=X&ei=m6ocT-iDBeGQiQLu4_GtDw&ved=0CFEQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=reuel%20gridley%20sanitary%20flour%20sack&f=false[/url][/quote]


Glad to see you appreciate the history of it. Austin was part of the Reese mining district in Nevada.

Speaking of Mark Twain, one other item from 'Roughing It' that you might find to be of interest is his description of the 'Washoe Zephyr' That's the wind that blows down the eastern side of the Sierras in the afternoon, and brings up huge dust storms like those in BRC.....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washoe_Zephyr

Twain's thoughts regarding the matter:

http://www.twainquotes.com/Zephyr.html

of course, this is taken from 'Roughing it"

Twain ended up in Nevada after a very brief and aborted stint as a Confederate-oriented 'partisan ranger' in northeastern Missouri in 1861. He went to Nevada with his brother, Orion Clemens, who was the secretary of state for the Territory of Nevada. Nevada became a state in 1864.
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