Ely, Nevada is about as far as you can get from an Interstate or a major airport in the continental United States. Located about 240 miles from both Salt Lake City and Las Vegas, Ely's rural location is most certainly part of its charm, but getting there does require some advance planning. While Ely may be a difficult place to get to, Las Vegas is certainly one of the easiest.
If you wish to use it, we offer an airline price checker on this website for your convenience. Please click here for more details.
For those of you that choose air travel, the convention committee is currently exploring charter shuttle services from Las Vegas. If you think this is something you might be interested in, drop us a line. We'll post more details on this site in the coming months.
Alternatively, the Elko Regional Airport (about 180 miles north of Ely) has two scheduled commercial flights per day to Salt Lake City. The flights are timed to provide maximum connection opportunities on inbound traffic to Salt Lake City. Elko also offers multiple car rental services including Enterprise, Hertz and Avis.
From any direction, the drive into White Pine County, Nevada takes you through some ruggedly beautiful parts of the American West. Be advised though, services can be many miles apart here. There's a stretch of Highway 50 where you can drive for over an hour without passing any towns or gas stations. These roads traverse some amazing scenery, but you need to be prepared.
If you're travelling to the convention from the pacific northwest, southwest, Texas or TAG areas, you'll most likely travel to Ely on Nevada Highway 93 - the Great Basin Highway. Several points along this scenic route will be included in our geology field trips. Be prepared for warm weather in the southern part of the state, but don't worry - it cools off dramatically as you move north into the Great Basin.
If you're travelling to the convention from central California, Reno or most points in the mid-west, the Loneliest Road in America, Nevada Highway 50, will be your path. This road through the Great Basin is one of the best ways to truly experience wild Nevada. It roughly parallels the Pony Express Trail, and remnants of the trail are visible for much of the way. Stretching the width of Nevada, the Loneliest Road is a fascinating scenic and historic corridor through a land seemingly untouched by humans. It travels through snow-mantled mountains that reach summits of more than 11,000 feet.
As we get closer to our convention dates, there will be a page on this site that allows cavers to post ride share information. Look for that around January.
Words of Caution
Most of Nevada's rural highways are open range areas. At any given time, you might be sharing the road with large farm animals, wild horses or any variety of wildlife. Stay alert. Also, pay attention to the speed limit signs. It's not uncommon, especially in smaller towns, to have 3 or 4 speed limit changes over less than a mile. They take those seriously out here. You should too. Finally, please don't give rides to hitchhiking extraterrestrials. We won't refund your registration fees if you are abducted by aliens. We'll just laugh at you as we auction off your cave gear.
Need some good ghost stories to download and play on your trip? Be sure to check out the "free stuff" section of our website. You can also download the audio tour CDs for both Highway 50 and Highway 93.
Ely, Nevada's White Pine Public Museum features the skeletal model of a cave bear (Arctodus simus) that was discovered in a nearby cave in 1982. This extinct species inhabited North America during the Pleistocene epoch from about 1.8 Mya until 11,000 years ago. It was the most common early North American bear and is considered one of the largest known terrestrial mammalian carnivores.
The museum's collections also include an extensive mineral display of copper ore samples, petrified woods, and fossils of ancient marine life.
Partly cloudy. Lows overnight in the mid 20s.
Partly cloudy skies. Low near 25F. Winds NW at 10 to 15 mph.
Some sun in the morning with increasing clouds during the afternoon. High 41F. Winds N at 15 to 25 mph. Winds could occasionally gust over 40 mph.
Last updated on
Thu, 27-Apr 8:45 pm