Lake Mead Recreational Area contains a lot of history, and includes the area around Boulder City and Hoover Dam. Because of uncontrolled flooding and the recognition that saving water is a smart thing, Boulder City was designated as a good spot to locate a dam. Once that decision was made, the next step was determining how to get materials to the site. It was 1931, people needed work, the railroad still ruled, and construction was needed to link Boulder City with Las Vegas and other important sites.
Creation of Lake Mead and Hoover Dam
Jobs were created, railroad lines built, businesses flourished and Lake Mead resulted in 1936 with the completion of Hoover Dam.. In 1984, the twenty-five foot wide tunnels and the trail were nominated to the National Register of Historic Places, protecting this legacy of the building of Southern Nevada and Hoover Dam. Visitors can safely walk the railroad bed that was used to haul supplies and materials for the dam’s construction. Access the Department of the Interior feeshere.
If you are over 62 years of age, take advantage of the special lifetime pass price which will enable you to visit Federal lands without additional fees.
Self-directed Walking Tour Tips
A walking tour is a fantastic way to view some of the area in the Lake Mead Recreational Area. A brochure with directions is available at the Visitor Center, open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every day except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. Browse the bookstore; be prepared to buy. Souvenirs and books beckon the visitor. Watch out for snakes and scorpions. Wear sensible walking shoes and stay on the trail. Carry water to avoid dehydration.
When I toured Boulder City and Hoover Dam a few years ago, I was unprepared for all the information I received at different locations. Just seeing the dam up close is incredible. I found a parking spot up the road before the Nevada-Arizona borders. We all got out of the car and walked across the border to Arizona. Then we crossed the Highway 93 and crossed back into Nevada to see the dam from above. Give your friends and family the opportunity to tell people that the whole family had to walk from Nevada to Arizona and back again.
Breathtaking would be my description of Hoover Dam. I respect the planning and work effort used to create the project. If you choose to see the Visitor Center, be aware that the $8.00 fee(children 3 and under are free) does not allow access to the dam or powerplant. Please visit here to read all the rules, regulations, and important information about visiting this site.
If you are interested in taking a tour bus to the dam, check on the internet under Hoover Dam tours.
Boulder City Museum and Boulder Dam Hotel
Located in the historic Boulder Dam Hotel, the Boulder City/Hoover Dam Museum is an example of the mindset, attitude, and status of the depressed early 1930s. Having lost nearly everything they’d worked for by this point, men, women, and children swarmed to Nevada’s desert, hoping to find work on the Boulder Canyon Project. There are artifacts, photos, and stories told by those who came for a new start on life in the harsh Nevada desert.
The museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday – Saturday, and 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday. It is closed New Year’s Day, Easter Sunday, Mother’s Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Admission fees are $2 for general admission, $1 for seniors and children, and free for members. It is conveniently located at 1305 Arizona St, Boulder City NV 89005, 30 minutes from Las Vegas and 15 minutes from Hoover Dam.
Make plans to spend the night. Book a room at the Boulder Dam Hotel and receive a free pass to the Museum. In the mood to get married, but can’t decide where you want the ceremony? The hotel has wedding packages, and a great staircase to make the entrance to a new life. Go here for more information.
I suggest allowing two days for the grand tour. Enjoy your visit, learn more about the USA, and have fun.
National Park Service, Historic Railroad Tunnel Trail
Boulder City Museum and Historical Association
Visits to the area by author