Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
355.00 ft (108.20 m)
Trail type
3.00 mi (4.83 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

On a mostly empty stretch of Highway 50 lie several historic ruins of early communications. Sitting fenced off immediately next to the highway are the stone remains of a telegraph station, however across the highway and up a 1.5 mile trail are the remains of the Cold Springs Pony Express station. 

Predating and ultimately replaced by the telegraph, the Pony Express station was one of a series of a waypoints for the riders that transported letters and parcels across the state of Nevada. Only operational from April 1860 to October of 1861, each stop had living and boarding quarters, as well as hay storage. This location in particular was heavily fortified to defend against Native Americans. The result of such fortifications is that now, over 150 years after the station ceased use, a good portion of it still stands in fairly good condition.

The trailhead sits at a dirt pullout with a vault toilet and interpretive sign. From that sign, a faint single track makes its way through the brush eastward in the direction of the mountains. While it's hard to see from a distance, eventually the stone remains become visible amidst the sagebrush landscape. Several benches sit along the way, offering hikers a chance to sit down and really take in just how vast and quiet this section of The Loneliest Road is.

The ruins themselves lay along a small creek. Signs ask visitors not to try to climb the structure, however it's okay to enter it. Small interpretive signs explain what each room was and give a bit of background on the station and the Pony Express. A guest book is also located at the building entrance. 

While not very spectacular, the hike's appeal is in the vast sense of remoteness one feels in this landscape. The trail itself is a little used, slightly overgrown single track that heads up the slope of the land until eventually reaching the ruins. The hike is not hard, however the trail itself can be a bit hard to follow in parts, and there is no shade or protection from exposure to the elements at all.

The hike is worth doing just to get a glimpse of the landscape that the Pony Express existed in. From the ruins, retrace your route back downhill to the parking area.


Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



Historical. Feeling of complete remoteness.


No shade. No water.

Trailhead Elevation

5,495.00 ft (1,674.88 m)

Highest point

5,850.00 ft (1,783.08 m)


Vault toilet
Historically significant

Typically multi-day


Permit required




Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.