The United States Congress designated the Black Rock Desert Wilderness (map
) in 2000 and it now has a total of 314,835 acres
All of this wilderness is located in Nevada
and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management.
The Black Rock Desert Wilderness is bordered by
the Pahute Peak Wilderness
to the west and the South Jackson Mountains Wilderness
to the east.
The Black Rock Desert Wilderness, which contains the eastern arm of the Black Rock Desert, is the largest Wilderness managed by the Bureau of Land Management. The Black Rock Desert is the dry lakebed of ancient Lake Lahonton and vegetation in the area consists mainly of saltbush and greasewood. Large portions of the area are unvegetated. Elevations range from 3,900 to 5,931 feet on top of Elephant Mountain. The Wilderness is essentially flat with the only topography occurring at Elephant and Pinto Mountains on the western edge of the area. During years of heavy snowpack the Quinn river flows through the area. The Wilderness also contains important paleological resources along the old lakeshore. Several mammoths and a saber tooth tiger have been excavated from the area. Wildlife in the area include; mule deer, pronghorn antelope, mountain lions, coyotes, and sagegrouse.