Galena Creek Visitor Center Programs
There is some sort of activity or program all year long at Galena Creek Visitor Center. Summers are especially busy with hikes, ranger programs, youth day camps, and school break camps. Winter programs explore the snowy landscape around the Galena Creek Recreation Area. Visit the Galena Creek events calendar to see the latest what's going on and when. Unless otherwise stated, there is a $5 per person suggested donation for Galena Creek Visitor Center programs.
Here are some of the Galena Creek Visitor Center programs and activities during July, 2013...
- Summer Treks - every Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Join us for a guided hike through Galena Creek. Please bring appropriate clothing and plenty of water. The time of the hike may be changed to fit the hike topic or may be cancelled due to weather conditions, call ahead for details.
- Campfire Friday: Snakes - Friday, July 12 at 7:30 p.m. Special guest Michelle Hunt from U.S. Fish and Wildlife will tell you all about the Sonoran Mountain kingsnake and show off this slithering marvel. Marshmallow roasting and hot chocolate will round out the night. Bring flashlights, as well as low-backed chairs or blankets. Weather permitting, call ahead for details.
- Galena Kids - Saturday, July 13 at 10 a.m. Head over to the Visitor Center with your young explorers to listen to guest speakers, participate in hands-on activities and make a special craft. (ages 2 to 10)
- Atmospheric Sciences Hike - Sunday, July 14 at 10 a.m. The Desert Research Institute's research climatologist Nina Oakely and PhD candidate Benjamin Hatchett will lead this guided hike, discussing the various elements of summer mountain weather, including slope flows, valley inversions, thunderstorms, and wave clouds. Ever heard of the Washoe Zephyr, or felt its forceful gusts? They will explain this phenomenon and teach you how to make your own short-term forecasts so you can be aware while out in the mountains.
- Galena Toddlers - Thursday, July 18 at 10 a.m. Bring your little ones to the Visitor Center to learn about nature through stories, games, and a craft (ages 2 to 5).
- Guided Hike: Lake Tahoe History - Saturday, July 20 at 10 a.m. Join us for the second of three guided hikes in July led by civil engineer and author David Antonucci. This hike's topic is a plunge into the cultural and environmental history of Lake Tahoe. Bring hiking boots, sunscreen, and water. The hike will take off from the Visitor Center.
- Campfire Firday - Friday, July 26 at 7:30 p.m. Our fourth Friday night campfire of the summer is here! Gather at Eagle Meadows in Galena Creek Park at 7:30pm for marshmallow roasting and hot chocolate. At 8 p.m., there will be a guest speaker to inform and delight the audience. Bring flashlights, blankets, and low-backed chairs to sit on. Weather permitting, call ahead for details. Come on down!
- Guided Hike: Mark Twain at Lake Tahoe - Saturday, July 27 at 10 a.m. Join us for the third and final guided hike in July led by civil engineer and author David Antonucci. This hike is all about Mark Twain at Lake Tahoe; learn about the events that inspired the rumors. Bring hiking boots, sunscreen, water, and a healthy curiosity. The hike will commence from the Visitor Center.
- Superheroes of Nature - Saturday, July 27 at 10 a.m. Kids, ages 5 to 11, will participate in activities designed to establish their own role in protecting the environment while learning about plants, animals, and the Truckee River watershed. Topics will include: Leaf Masks, Superhero Species; Leave No Trace; and Evil Villains of Nature. Our goal is to create a firm base for kids to build upon their individual roles in conservation and respect of nature.
Great Basin Naturalists Summer Camp
Plan a week or two of adventure at Great Basin Naturalists Summer Camp. This year you may choose one or more of the five weeks of day camp and four weeks of residential camps. Day camps begin daily at 9 a.m. and end at 5 p.m. Residential camps begin Monday at 9 a.m. and run through Friday afternoon. Camps are offered to children ages 8-12. Be sure to check out the Teen Leadership Academy for ages 13-17. Call (775) 849-4948 for more information.
Other Things To Do at Galena Creek Visitor Center
Hiking - Galena Creek Recreation Area provides access to several hiking trails. In addition to a paved, half-mile nature trail next to the Galena Creek Visitor Center, there is the Jones-Whites Creek Loop Trail, Bitterbrush Trail, Upper Thomas Creek Trail, Dry Pond Trail, Upper Whites Creek Trail, and the Mt. Rose Wilderness Area. A Galena to Tahoe Trail, connecting Thomas Creek to Mt. Rose saddle, is projected to open in 2013, providing access from Reno to the Tahoe Rim Trail.
Fall and Winter - The forest in and around the Galena Creek Recreation Area has lots of deciduous trees and bushes, making it a great place to enjoy fall color while taking a cool hike. If you are a photographer, you can get some colorful shots of the changing seasons in the woods and along Galena Creek. When the snow falls, the Galena Creek Visitor Center offers programs both inside the building and outside at various places around the park. You can bring snowshoes and hit the trails exploring the winter landscape on your own. Other possible winter activities include sledding, tubing, and cross-country skiing.
Galena Creek Visitor Center and Park Hours
Summer season is May 1 through October 15. Hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. Winter season is October 16 through April 30. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday through Sunday. The rest of Galena Creek Regional Park is open year around for day use. For more information, call the ranger office at (775) 849-2511.
Getting to the Galena Creek Visitor Center
The Visitor Center is at 18250 Mt. Rose Highway (Nevada 431). The Center and parking area are just inside the north entrance to Galena Creek Recreation Area. (You'll also see this area sometimes referred to as Galena Creek Regional Park.). From Reno, either go south on S. Virginia Street to the Mt. Rose Highway and turn right (at The Summit Shopping Center), or take U.S. 395 south to the Mt. Rose Highway exit and go right. Just after you get into the trees, looks for signs and a right turn into the Galena Creek Visitor Center parking area. For more information, call (775) 849-4948.
About Galena Creek Visitor Center
Galena Creek Visitor Center is the result of a partnership between the U.S. Forest Service (Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest) and Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space. The Visitor Center is operated by the Great Basin Institute, which provides staff, volunteers, and a wide range of educational nature programs for children and families. The Visitor Center is located along the scenic Mt. Rose Highway at the southwest edge of Reno, Nevada.
Source: Galena Creek Visitor Center website and e-newsletter.