On December 21, 2000, the President signed the Black Rock Desert-High Rock Canyon Emigrant Trails National Conservation Area Act of 2000, which was enacted by Congress to create special designations for 1.2 million acres of public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in northwestern Nevada. The Act designates 815,000 acres as a National Conservation Area (NCA), and within the NCA there are nearly 380,000 acres that are designated "Wilderness." There are also about 375,000 acres designated Wilderness outside of the NCA, bringing the entire area (NCA and Wildernesses) to approximately 1.2 million acres.
NCA and Wilderness designation for these areas will ensure that one of the last nationally-significant segments of the historic California emigrant trails along with the surrounding Black Rock Desert, High Rock Canyon and other prominent national resources will be protected.
The Act directed BLM to develop a Resource Management Plan (RMP) for the long-term protection and management of the conservation area . As part of that effort, the BLM developed an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The RMP and EIS were completed in 2004 following an extensive public participation process.
NCA Reference Map
NCA vs. Wilderness
Wilderness Act of 1964
Wilderness Acreage Table
Wilderness Grazing Guidelines
The Black Rock Desert-High Rock Canyon Emigrant Trails National Conservation Area and associated Wilderness Areas are jointly managed by the Winnemucca, NV and Surprise (Cedarville), CA Field Offices. Portions of the NCA staff are located in each office. The NCA Manager is located in Winnemucca.
Winnemucca Field Office: (775) 623-1500
Surprise Field Office: (530) 279-6101