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Thu, May 23

Free entry makes Saturday a great day to check out our closest national park
Take a deep look at Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Lake Mead is more than a beautiful lake over the hill. Ranger Amanda Royal is talking about the adventures the park has to offer. (Photo by Agata Popeda/Daily Miner)

Lake Mead is more than a beautiful lake over the hill. Ranger Amanda Royal is talking about the adventures the park has to offer. (Photo by Agata Popeda/Daily Miner)

KINGMAN – Located an hour from Kingman and only half an hour from Las Vegas, Lake Mead National Recreation Area is “more than a lake,” says Lake Mead Public Information Officer Christie Vanover.

National Park Week is the best occasion to visit the park and on Saturday, April 20, entry is free.

In celebration of National Park Week April 20-28, the National Park Service is encouraging people to discover and enjoy the country’s network of 419 natural, cultural and recreational sites.

Lake Mead is more than a man-made lake on the Colorado River, formed by the Hoover Dam in 1935 and the largest water reservoir in the United States. Its vast recreation area has red rocks, purple mountains, Joshua trees, slot canyons and night skies illuminated by the Milky Way.

“We want for people to take a deep look at their local national park,” Vanover said, discussing the newest park’s campaign, “Take a look,” which started in January. “When people think national parks, they think of Grand Canyon or Zion. But we are their closest local national park and we have a lot to offer.”

Lake Mead offers 14 hiking trails, from easy to strenuous, paved and as wild as they get. The hiking season is never over, but those who want to hike in the summer, should pick morning hours.

There are a few marinas on the lake, offering a variety of boating options, from bringing and launching your own boat, through house-boats for the whole family and Sunday brunch cruises from Bullhead City and Lake Mohave to the Hoover Dam.

There are multiple camp grounds open all year long; Lake Mead is never off season. Typically, they charge $20 per night ($10 with a senior pass). Park entry is $20, except for Saturday, April 20.

Scuba-diving, either with your own equipment or with a special crew, is available upon request.

As part of National Park Week, Lake Mead National Recreation Area has launched a 60-second video that can watched at www.kdminer.com and a series of images to provide people with a snapshot of the park’s diversity to offer a different perspective.

“It’s a place where both serene bald eagles and aerodynamic bass boats can be clocked in at over 45 mph. Where agile desert bighorn sheep and skilled climbers can be seen scaling canyon walls. It’s a park where you can camp with all of the amenities of home or go completely off the grid,” Vanover said.

“We encourage people to find their connection to Lake Mead National Recreation Area, and when they do, we hope they join us in caring for their national park,” said Beth Ransel, deputy superintendent.

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