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Hike-in Required
No
Open Year-round
Yes
ADA accessible
No
Guided tours
No
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.

Stokes Castle is a present-day reminder of central Nevada's mining boom in the late 19th century. This three-story granite tower was built in 1897 as a summer home for the family of Anson Phelps Stokes. Stokes, a wealthy developer and banker, incorporated elements of Roman architecture and Victorian styling into this unique watchtower. Local workers cut and raised the stones, some weighing thousands of pounds. The original three-story structure included a fireplace on each floor, balconies on the upper floors, and a sun deck. Its position, poised on top of a hill, overlooks the Reese River Valley. With a lavishly decorated interior, expertly crafted exterior, gorgeous views and cozy fireplaces, who wouldn't want to relax here all summer long?

The Stokes family abandoned the tower after living here, on and off, for only two months. In 1898, the year after its construction, Stokes' silver mine had run its course and he found himself in the center of an embezzlement scandal. He sold the tower and his mine, leaving Austin for good.

The tower has remained unoccupied since. Much of the decorations and wooden structures have since been lost to time, but the hardy stone craftsmanship remains. In 2003, Stokes Castle was added to the National Register of Historic Places. A barbed wire fence protects the still-standing granite fortress so visitors can imagine what it looked like when it was first constructed.

If you happen to be passing through the area around sunset, this is probably the best place to watch the sun go down. Otherwise, this unique Nevadan landmark makes a good leg-stretching stop any time of day.

After a quick visit to Stokes Castle, head down the hill to the city of Austin, where you can learn more about local mining history. The city calls itself a "living ghost town," with many buildings still standing from the silver boom. Walk through the small downtown to see the churches, bank, town hall and other structures that are seemingly frozen in time.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Fall
Summer

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

None

Pros

Unique attraction.

Cons

Not much to do here.

Pets allowed

Allowed

Features

Family friendly
Picnic tables
Historically significant
Big vistas

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Lodging + Camping

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