The boundaries of the Basin & Range National Monument actually only cover a small portion of the Great Basin Desert, yet this unique terrain extends well north into Nevada and beyond. Basically, where the desert mountains meet the sagebrush flatlands anywhere in this big state can be described as basin and range territory, so there is an overwhelming amount of this unique terrain to explore. A place where the basin and range can be experienced in its truest sense can be found in central Nevada between historic Ely and the Ruby Valley, which is a vast expanse of sagebrush grasslands surrounded by towering mountains. By opting to travel on the dirt side roads from Ely going north, there will be plenty of opportunities to spot herds of wild grazing animals along the way, which includes wild horses. In fact, small groups of wild horses are fairly numerous in this region and some are led by an obvious alpha male, which makes the viewing all the more captivating!
A 4x4 high ground clearance vehicle will be needed for traversing the rough ranch roads and National Forest trails that go through the hills north of Ely into the Ruby Valley region. Alternately, the two lane Ruby Valley Highway is a gravel road that is smooth enough for an average passenger car, so just about anybody can do the trip. Wild horse spotting can be done along either way a visitor chooses to go, so be sure to pack a powerful lens or binoculars for the ride!
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