Road.Travel Road.Travel

    Day Itinerary

    10 Activities
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    Day 3

    408 mi0.7 mi

    Mammoth Lakes to Las Vegas via Nevada's Hwy 95 Through the Mojave Desert

    One last day on the road, this time heading deep into Central Nevada's westernmost fringes, into the great wide open of the Mojave Desert. Daytime stops include eccentric art and a bit of frontier history in Tonopha, Goldfield, and Beatty. Never heard of them? They're small towns that are all but off-the-grid, and home to some treasures of the desert, which is exactly why they're worth discovering.
    There's one more surprise in store on the final stretch back to Las Vegas — a scenic detour for dinner in Mt. Charleston, a mountain getaway location for Vegas locals in the know. (Less than an hour from The Strip, it actually snows here in the winter.)
    42.8 mi
    50 min
    Electrify America Charging Station - 100003
    08:151 hr

    Electrify America Charging Station - 100003

    Open Details
    By now, you know the drill for this Electrify America Charging Station. While the EV is charging, head into Vons grocery store for beverages and road trip snacks to sip and savor along the way.
    Type: CCS 7 plugs Power: 150 - 350 kW
    115.6 mi
    2 hrs
    Central Nevada Museum
    11:1545 min

    Central Nevada Museum

    Museum
    Open Details
    For as remote and sparsely populated as a large majority of Nevada is, this region has been on the US map for well over 150 years. Frontiersmen, prospectors, ranchers, and cowboys — and, eventually, railroad workers — all made their way to these parts and found a way to call it "home."
    The Central Nevada Museum has some fantastic treasures from this period in more relatively modern history, as well as a collection of prehistoric fossils from the region, Native American artifacts, and an outdoor Old West town complete with a saloon and blacksmith shop, a couple of miner's cabins, and other related relics.
    Opening Hours: Tuesday – Friday 8:00 am – 4:00 pm
    26.4 mi
    25 min
    Goldfield Visitor Center
    12:3030 min

    Goldfield Visitor Center

    Travel Agency
    Open Details
    Remarkably, one of Goldfield's claims to fame is it was the largest city in Nevada — at one point. Before Reno or Las Vegas were even a blip on the map, Goldfield was a mining boomtown home to some 20,000 residents. The Goldfield Visitor Center has much more to share about the town's history, if it happens to be open when you're driving through, but equally as important is that it has several EV charging stations, including two CCS plugs. (Also, it's time for lunch.)
    Type: CCS 2 Plugs Power: 50 kW
    Goldfield Visitor Center Hours: Saturday – Monday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
    0.4 mi
    10 min
    Dinky Diner
    13:1545 min

    Dinky Diner

    Restaurant
    Open Details
    If you've never been to a small town where the only option is the local diner, you're in for a treat. Dinky Diner is as local as local gets.
    Unfussy diner fare — griddled burgers with all sorts of toppings and sandwiches piled high, hot dogs and chili dogs, wraps, and a handful of kid-friendly options — are all served with a smile.
    Monday – Saturday 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
    0.4 mi
    10 min
    Goldfield Visitor Center
    14:105 min

    Goldfield Visitor Center

    Travel Agency
    Open Details
    Come back to visitor center to pick up your car.
    1.2 mi
    10 min
    The International Car Forest
    14:3030 min

    The International Car Forest

    Landmark
    Open Details
    Nevada has always attracted individuals with a certain free-spirited, "if you can dream it, you can build it" ethos — that's how Las Vegas began, and it's no coincidence that the festival of "radical inclusion," Burning Man, found a permanent home further north in the state as soon as it became too large to host on a beach in San Francisco.
    The International Car Forest is a perfect example of just such a vision, to build the world's largest so-called "car forest" to entertain and provoke locals as well as passersby. It's eccentric, for sure, but also pretty remarkable — more than 40 vehicles look as if they've just been tossed about, many jammed upright into the sand.
    72.1 mi
    1 hr 20 min
    Goldwell Open Air Museum
    16:2030 min

    Goldwell Open Air Museum

    Landmark
    Open Details
    If the International Car Forest is a renegade, open-air gallery, then the Goldwell Open Air Museum is certainly a bonafide museum. A bit more structured in its conception, the Goldwell Open Air Museum began as the vision of a group of Belgian artists who were inspired by the possibilities of the vast open lands of the Mojave Desert.
    The collection of permanent works were installed between 1984 and 2000 and include everything from a sculptural recreation of Da Vinci's "Last Supper" to a 25-foot tall pixelated female sculpture called "Lady Desert: The Venus of Nevada."
    The open-air museum is open 24/7, while the onsite Visitor Center and Gift Shop is open Wends.–Sat., 10 am – 4 pm.
    35 mi
    40 min
    Amargosa Valley Rest Area
    17:301 hr

    Amargosa Valley Rest Area

    Open Details
    Time for a pitstop again at this rest area to charge up for the remainder of the drive to Las Vegas. If you don't care to just relax for a few while the EV charges, don't forget that the Area 51 Alien Center is just across the highway.
    The State of Nevada is slowly rolling out EV charge points to more remote points along the drive between Reno and Las Vegas, one of which is located here at the rest center. (Note this EV Charge Point has recently been down — double-check it's back in order before embarking on this road trip).
    Type: CCS 1 Plug Power: 50 kW
    80.2 mi
    1 hr 30 min
    The Retreat on Charleston Peak
    20:001 hr

    The Retreat on Charleston Peak

    Lodging
    Open Details
    On the slopes of Charleston Peak — a nearly 12,000-footer that receives some snow and cold enough temps in the winter to accommodate a seasonal ski and snowboard resort — Mt. Charleston is something of an open secret among Vegas locals and a popular weekend getaway destination. Driving up and down the mountain feels like you could be in the Sierras heading to Lake Tahoe, or back to Mammoth Lakes for that matter, not like The Strip is just 45 minutes away.
    It's a fitting finale that after so much time in the desert, mountain-rustic experiences bookend the day. The Retreat on Charleston Peak feeds right into that forested fantasy with its wood and stone facade and interior finishes, while the lodge's Canyon Restaurant & Bar serves gastropub fare and some homestyle classics.
    34.9 mi
    40 min
    21:45

    Las Vegas

    Returning to the bright lights, glittering marquees, and blatant excess of Las Vegas is a wild juxtaposition from where you've just spent the last few days, which promises to be some interesting food for thought while you settle back into reality (well, sort of).
    Day 2
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