After the bright lights of Vegas, we were ready to get back out to the wilderness for a while. We didn’t have to travel far to accomplish this, either. In less than an hour we had stopped to gas up Our Way and arrived at Las Vegas Bay Campground located within the Lake Mead National Recreational Area (NRA) where the southeast border of Nevada meets Arizona.
We were here to scope out this section of the NRA. Our friends from New Hampshire were flying from Boston, MA today to Salt Lake City, UT to rent an RV there and meet us here on Saturday. If this campground checked out ok, we would meet here. If not, we would find a better spot and send them an updated rendezvous location. Once we set up camp we took the Jeep for a ride to check out Boulder Beach Campground and Lake Mead RV Village, both about ten miles farther down Lakeshore Drive and actually on the lake. We preferred Lake Mead RV Village and checked in with the office for availability for Sunday and Monday nights for two RVs. The manager indicated that this would be no problem. Knowing we could find a local campground with full hookups, we decided to stick with the Las Vegas Bay site for the next few nights to do some dry camping while awaiting our friends’ arrival. They indicated that they would like to give dry camping a try so this seemed to be a good place for them to try it out.
Notice from the pictures that there was no longer a lake behind the campground as we expected from the location on the map. The drought affecting the entire southwest portion of the country combined with a previous flood in the Lake Mead area created such a demand on the water supply that the Las Vegas Bay portion of Lake Mead was bone dry. (More on this in a future post.)
Later that day, we drove to the Lake Mead NRA office in Boulder City, NV to get whatever info we could. The people there were really friendly and knowledgeable and shared some interesting info about their town and the history of area. When the Hoover Dam was being built, thousands of people came here to work on the project. The location of Boulder City provided an excellent vantage point overlooking the work site. Seems that government officials, the engineers and project leaders had the good fortune to live in Boulder City, high up on the hill, while the laborers got to stay in the tent village closer (and at a much lower elevation) to the work site. Interesting.
Boulder City is a cool little Mayberry-RFD-type-town (how many of you recognize that reference?) that was fun to scope out while we were there. A quick visit to the local grocery store and it was back to the RV to settle in for a few days.