|Notes on Nevada Mountain Ranges, by Richard Carey, May 9, 2020.
Note: This list has 266 ranges and includes ranges that are not in Lists of John. The list resides there in the
Custom List Category, Nevada section.
Special Note: Ranges were listed regardless of location as long as they were in the state. There are 12 ranges
that are on a military base and are not accessible. Thus it is unlikely that anyone will be able to complete the
list. Those on military land are shown as No Access in the notes column.
This is a list of mountain ranges in Nevada. There is no precise definition of what is a range. The problem
is often where does it start and end and sometimes ranges overlap. Using the USGS topo maps we look
for the word Mountains (plural), Range, or the spanish equivalent Sierra or Sierrita. None of the ranges in
Nevada have the word Sierra unlike nearby states which have quite a few.
I want to thank John Vitz who worked up a Nevada Ranges list which I received in November, 1999. I started
with his list and checked each range looking at the latest maps I have in my software. At that time Gordon
McLeod and Barbara Lilley exchanged many emails with John about the ranges. Gordon and Barbara had
been climbing ranges for many years in Nevada and Arizona and had many observations on John's list. I
have studied those comments and corrections that were made at that time.
Nevada is unique in that there is a comprehensive study of the mountains in the state done by Alvin McLane
which he published as "Silent Cordilleras" in 1978. This book provides a wealth of information on the ranges
and their high points. McLane was probably using older 15 minute maps and thus some of the elevations
are off a bit compared to the 7.5 minute maps now available. McLane sometimes gave a name to a range
based on historical data which does not appear on the maps. The Board on Geographic Names has
accepted his work many times and made an official ruling using his data.
In the list I have identified with an asterisk a range or high point name that does not appear on the topo
A note about Hills. I have not used hills in other states, but have made an exception for Nevada since there
maps. Sometimes the name of the summit is not on the map, but has been set by the BGN. If there is
no name the summit may be identifed by PXXXX ft. from a spot elevation shown on the map. If the map
is metric then it will be PXXXX m for meters. If the high point is just a closed contour with no elevation then
as is LOJ convention, the elevation is the last contour plus one-half the contour interval. This represents the
best average as to what the true elevation might be.
are several hills which are large with a lot of prominence. Also McLane has listed many hills in his book.
I have chosen six hills which all have over 2000 ft. of prominence. This is quite significant and I think they
deserve to be listed with the ranges. The six hills included are listed below:
1. Bloody Run Hills, 7923 ft., Prom = 3029 ft.
2. Candelaria Hills, 8736 ft., Prom = 2469 ft.
3. Elko Hills, 7509 ft., Prom = 2092 ft.
4. Garfield Hills, 8085 ft., Prom = 2145 ft.
5. Pine Grove Hills, 9549 ft., Prom = 2764 ft.
6. Wood Hills, 8319 ft., Prom = 2174 ft.
There are five ranges with the highest point in California which do extend a short distance into Nevada so
they have been included. In each case the high point in Nevada is a dreaded "liner" meaning the point lies
on the state line. I do note the high point in California should you want to do that peak also.
The liners listed from north to south are:
Sweetwater Mountains, Boundary Mon. #32, Shown as Lyon County HP in LOJ
Funeral Mountains, Boundary Mon. #93, in LOJ
Castle Mountains, Boundary Mon. #132, not in LOJ
Piute Range, Boundary Mon. #133, not in LOJ
Resting Spring Range, P3970 ft., close to Boundary Mon. #105, not in LOJ
Below are notes on these five ranges.
7. Sweetwater Mountains - This is another range that is mostly in California, but extends north into Nevada.
The high point in Nevada is on the slope of Middle Sister peak on the state line and is Boundary Monument #32.
For those who don't like liners, East Sister about a mile to the northeast has a prominence of 704 ft. and would be
the last significant peak in the Sweetwater Mountains. The high point of the range in California is Mount
Patterson, 11,673 ft. which is about 5 miles south.
8. Funeral Mountains - This range, primarily in California, does go a short distance into Nevada near Daylight
Pass. The high point in Nevada would be a "liner", Boundary Monument #93 at 5066 ft. For those of you who find
liners trivial or plain annoying, I suggest P4663 ft. a short distance north. This is a real peak with prominence of
403 ft. which would be at the end of the Funeral Mountains. The high point of the Funeral Mountains in
California is Pyramid Peak, 6707 ft. which is about 32 miles southeast.
9. Castle Mountains - These extend a short distance into Nevada, the high point is on the state line at
Border Monument #132. Elevation there is about 5000 ft. The highest point is in California and is P1701 m
(5581 ft.) which is 3.7 miles to the southwest. For those who dislike "liners" I suggest climbing P4511 ft.
which is about one mile northeast. This is a real peak with prominence of 361 ft. and is the last one going
northeast in Nevada.
10. Piute Range - These mountain are mostly in California but do extend a short distance into Nevada.
The high point would be on the state line at Boundary Monument #133 not shown on the map. This is not in LOJ
so I can't include it. The part extending north of the border is not significant. The high point of the range in
California is Ute BM, 1496 m (4908 ft.) which is 8 miles south.
11. Resting Spring Range - This is a range in San Bernardino County that extends northwest into Nye County
Nevada. Boundary Monument #105 shown on the High Peak map has the same closed contour as the point I have selected to the north which has a larger closed contour. It's a toss up as to which is higher. The high point of the range is
Stewart BM at 1605 m which is 8 miles SSE.
A final range runs into California, but its summit is not a liner and is in LOJ. The highest point is in California.
12. Bodie Mountains - McLane identifies the Brawley Peaks as part of Bodie Mountains which are mostly in
California north of the historic town of Bodie. The topo calls them Bodie Hills. In California the highest
point is Potato Peak at 10,237 ft. The high point in Nevada is the highest one of the Brawley Peaks
at 9450 ft.,(interpreted).
There is one range that extends across the state line in to Oregon. Here are notes on that range:
13. Pueblo Mountains - This range in northern Humboldt County extends north into Oregon where the high
point of the range is Pueblo Mountain at 8632 ft. This peak is about 7 miles north of the Nevada boundary.
In Nevada the Pueblo Mountains run for about 7.5 miles. The highest point lies about 0.4 miles south of the
state line and is a small peak with a spot elevation of 6433 ft. This peak has a prominece of about 130 ft. and
is not in Lists of John. I have used this peak as the Nevada high point. The state line runs slightly above a
6400 ft. contour line so a point on the line could be about the same elevation.
There are three ranges that extend into Utah. Here are details on those listed from north to south:
14. Goose Creek Mountains - This range in northeastern Elko County runs into Utah. The high point in Nevada
is White Rock Mountain at 7604 ft. The highest point in the range is in Utah and is an unnamed summit at 8684 ft.
about 18 miles northeast.
15. Pilot Range - This range is in northeastern Elko County. It runs into Utah, but the highest summit is Pilot Peak
in Nevada at 10,716 ft.
16. Virgin Mountains - In eastern Clark County this range has a high point of 8087 ft. at Virgin Peak. The range
goes northeast into Arizona where Mount Bangs is the highest point at 8012 ft.
There is another range that may be considered as running from Nevada into Arizona:
17. Black Mountains - This long range is mostly in Arizona but does extend across the Colorado River a short
distance into Nevada. In Nevada the high point is unofficially named Redstone Peak. The peak has Bitter
Benchmark on top. In Arizona Mount Perkins at 5456 ft. is considered the high point of the range.
The remaining comments are in no particular order.
18. Antelope Mountains - The topo map has Petersen Mountain over a long distance north-south on the
Granite Peak topo. McLane says these are the Antelope Mountains. He says the high point is called
Mount Smeaton, but this name does not appear on the map.
19. Badger Mountains - The Badger Mountain SE map has this as a mountain not Mountains. McLane has
called this a range due to its extent. The highpoint is 7190 ft. interpreted and is somewhere in the 7180 ft.
closed contour. There is a benchmark at 7188 ft. on the edge of the contour. The datasheet says the highest
point is 0.25 mi. NW, but it can't be that far. John Vitz also reports that the BM is not the high point.
20. Bunejug Mountains - The highest peak has been named Wheat Peak by the Board on Geographic Names
21. Cedar Mountains - This range is in northeast Mineral County. Little Pilot Peak is the high point which is shown
as 8082 ft. Ron Moe has pointed out that the BGN has selected this as the high point of the range and has an
elevation of 8087 ft. On climbing the peak he noted that the land just northeast of the BM disk is indeed about
five to six feet higher so the 8087 value makes sense. LOJ uses the peak at 8083 ft., 0.7 miles west as the
range high point which is not correct.
22. Coyote Spring Range - This range south of Lower Pahranagat Lake is part of the northern end of the large
Sheep Range. McLane has called the northern part Coyote Spring Range after the Coyote Spring Valley to the
23. Sheephead Mountains - These do not appear on the Sheep Spring map, but have been officially named
by the Board on Geographic Names in 1990 based on work by McLane.
24. Burnt Springs Range - McLane has Sugarloaf, Grey Dome BM, as the highpoint of this range. The topo
shows the Delamar Mountains in this area. Evidently he feels the northern reach of the Delamar Mountains
ends at highway 93 and Sugarloaf is part of the Burnt Springs Range which lies mostly to the northwest.
25. Elbow Range - McLane has this range extending south into what is shown as the Las Vegas Range on
the Arrow Canyon NW map. The high point is P4650 ft. which I have used. In LOJ he has P4010 ft. further
north on the Wildcat Wash SW map as the high point. It is a matter of opinion where the range ends going
south. The southern point, P4650 ft. has much greater prominence.
26. Bruneau Range - This range in northern Elko County does not appear on the maps. McLane has named
these after the Bruneau River (west fork) which is at the eastern end of the range and flows north into Idaho.
In this area one finds The Mahoganies which appear to be a set of lower foothills. Merritt Mountain at 8792 ft.
is the high point of the Bruneau Range.
27. Leppy Range - These are called Leppy Hills on the map, but McLane has decided to call them a range.
The high point Leppy Peak has significant prominence of 1886 ft.
28. Hunter Point Mountains - McLane has named these mountains which are actually the southern portion of
the Cherry Creek Range. There is a significant pass separating them. Ray BM at 9254 ft. is the high point.
29. Stonewall Range - This is shown as Stonewall Mountain on the map, but McLane says it was known as
Stonewall Range in the past. It seems appropriate to call it a range since the highest point, Stonewall Mountain
has a prominence of 2928 ft.
30. Bloody Run Hills - These hills are shown as part of the southern Santa Rosa Range. They lie west of
highway 95 and the highway cuts across the north end of the hills which seems to provide a dividing point
from the rest of the Santa Rosa Range. I am including them since the high point, Bloody Run Peak has a
prominence of just over 3000 ft. McLane says the hills are 22 miles long north to south and up to six miles
wide. Large enough and with significant prominence to include in this range list.
31. South Mountains - McLane has listed the Deep Creek Mountains which are mostly in Utah but he says
run into Nevada in northeastern White Pine County. On the modern topos there are no Deep Creek Mountains,
but the South Mountains appear instead. I have used the same high point that McLane identified at
P2964 m (9724 ft.) as the range high point for the South Mountains.
32. Woods Hills - These are hills on the Moor Summit topo in Elko County. I have listed them since the summit
has over 2000 ft. of prominence. The high point is Independence BM at 8314 ft., but the official name set by
the BGN is Little Cedar Mountain.
33. Ely Range - This range does not appear on the Dutch John Mtn. map. According to the BGN it is a variant
name that has been used. Note that the Pioche Hills much further south have also been called the Ely Range.
I wanted to include Dutch John Mountain since it has over 2000 ft. of prominence.
34. Division Range - There has been some juggling of names in this area of Humboldt County. The Division
Range is in an area shown as the Sheep Peaks on the topo. Division Peak which lies 3 miles east of the
high point of the Division Range has been renamed Donnelly Peak. Donnelly is the high point of the Calico
35. McKinney Mountains - George Benchmark at 9319 ft. is shown as the highest point. The datasheet
says that this is the highest point on the ridge, but about one-half mile northwest is an identical spot
elevation of 9319 ft. Gordon McLeod noted in a register placed there that he thought that point was higher after
sighting with his 5X level. Since there is a bit of controversy climbers should probably do both summits. I
have a report on this peak at: http://www.peakbagging.com/NVPhotos/GeorgeBM.html
1. "Silent Cordilleras" by Alvin R. McLane, Published by Camp Nevada, Reno, NV., 1978
2. "Nevada Mountain Ranges" by George Wuerthner, American & World Geographic Publishing, 1992
3. "Nevada Place Names" by Helen S. Carlson, University of Nevada Press, Reno, 1974.