Scenic photo of the Black Rock Desert-High Rock Canyon NCA.

The NCA and the associated wilderness areas in northwest Nevada, covering approximately 1.2 million acres, were established to conserve, protect and enhance resources associated with the historic Oregon and California Emigrant Trails and surrounding areas for the benefit and enjoyment of current and future generations. The planning area was recognized as containing nationally significant historic trails, an absence of development, unique Great Basin biota, and significant cultural, archaeological, paleontological, and geographical resources. The Black Rock NCA Desert, a vast dry lakebed,  is one of the largest and spectacular playas in the world. The famous Applegate-Lassen Emigrant Trail, a section of the California National Historic Trail  that runs through the heart of the area, played an important role in American western migration and the California Gold Rush. It is home to Burning Man, the largest special recreation permit held in public land.

2019 Artist-in-Residence 

The Black Rock Desert High Rock Canyon Emigrant TrailsNCA, along with the Friends of Black Rock High Rock (FBRHR) announces the Call for Artists for the 2019 Artists in Residence Program. The deadline for applications is April 22, 2019.

Two artists working in any medium will be selected for a two-week residency in Gerlach, Nevada, the gateway to the NCA. Artists will have an opportunity to spend time learning about the NCA and creating artwork in the beautiful Black Rock Desert. Lodging for two weeks in June 2019 and a stipend to cover food and supplies will be provided to the selected artists. Three showings of the artwork produced will be exhibited in Winnemucca, Gerlach, and Reno following the program and artwork may be sold at the discretion of the artists. Posters of a selected work will be produced and distributed to other NCAs around the country.

Applications and additional information are provided on the FBRHR website at or by calling Sarah Lyon at FBRHR at 775-557-2900 or Kathryn Ataman at BLM at 775-623-1500.


Point of Contact

Black Rock Desert-High Rock Emigrant Trails NCA
BLM Winnemucca District Office
5100 E. Winnemucca Blvd.
Winnemucca NV  89445

Phone: 775-623-1500

Featured Photos

Teal Francis Caribou and Coldfoot Mountain Artwork
Artist Teal Francis Caribou and Coldfoot Mountain Artwork.

View the BLM Nevada AiR Flickr album for photos of art and AiR program participants.