Tucked away in southeastern Nevada, in between the tiny towns of Pioche and Panaca, you’ll find Cathedral Gorge State Park. This beautiful place was formed from volcanic activity. Over time, the faults formed a valley which eventually led to a freshwater lake, followed by the gradual draining of the freshwater lake. What remains is a picturesque, completely unexpected mass of spires, caves, and slot canyons.
You can read more about how this parked was formed millions of years ago here.
Located about 2.5 hours from Vegas (And almost 7 hours from Carson City, Nevada, where I live.), this 2,000 acre park offers several miles of hiking trails. You can cover all of them in one day, or stretch it out over two.
If you want to stay overnight, the campground has 22 first come, first served campsites with nearby water and flush toilets. Each site has a fire ring, a grill, and a structure for shade. The sites are pleasant enough, but offer no privacy.
Cathedral Gorge is an amazing place to explore, with opportunities to hike, camp, and view wildlife. Add this park to your list as a “must see” destination when you’re traveling through the area. And don’t forget your camera!