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Ruby Crest Trail

Ruby Mountains Area, Nevada

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Ruby Crest Trail

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  • The beautiful Liberty Lake.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Campsite near Furlong Lake.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • The meadows above Furlong Lake.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • A freshwater spring near Furlong Lake.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Hiking the crest of the Rubies.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Overland Lake.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Overland Lake, seen from above.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Ascending the pass before Overland Lake.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Campsite in the Smith Creek drainage.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Smith Creek campsite.- Ruby Crest Trail
  • Hiking out of the sagebrush.- Ruby Crest Trail
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Solitude. Big vistas. Remote peaks.
Cons: 
Exposure to elements. Limited campsites in sections.
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Region:
Ruby Mountains Area, NV
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Net Elevation Gain: 
3,600.00 ft (1,097.28 m)
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Summer, Fall
Suitable for:
Hiking, Biking, Horseback
Total Distance: 
36.00 mi (57.94 km)
Trail type: 
Shuttle
Trailhead Elevation: 
7,247.00 ft (2,208.89 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Pro Contributor

The Ruby Mountains are nicknamed the "Alps of Nevada," and the 36-mile long Ruby Crest National Recreation Trail winds it’s way through the entirety of this beautiful range. From sweeping vistas over arid sage lands to rugged and remote peaks, this trail truly has it all. While the Ruby Crest technically has two trailheads, the trail is commonly completed from south to north starting at Harrison Pass and ending at Lamoille Canyon. There are two main reasons for hiking in this direction: the sun will be at your back, and the scenery only gets better as the hike goes on.

Harrison Pass is relatively low in elevation, and in this part of the country that means a sagebrush-dominant landscape with very little shade or protection from the elements. The first 5 to 7 miles of the hike are on a four-wheel drive road, and this section is probably not what the average hiker would expect a beautiful trail to look like. Have no fear, though. After the 10-mile mark, the scenery begins to open up and the Rubies start to show off their magic with the majestic Tipton Peak in the foreground.

After ascending the first pass you will be greeted with an incredible view of Overland Lake, which is a site for sore eyes after traversing a mostly arid landscape. After Overland Lake the trail goes up and down through several drainages, and it eventually ends up on the true crest of the range. From the crest the hiker can see for what seems like forever, and the heart of the Rubies come into sight.

The Ruby Crest Trail ends in Lamoille Canyon, which features many alpine lakes and incredibly beautiful peaks. For the backpacker looking for wilderness solitude and a unique mountain range to explore, the Ruby Crest Trail is a must do.

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Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide

Field Guide

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(3 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(5 within a 30 mile radius)

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