The Loneliest Road in America

Eastern Nevada high desert Highway 50 is appropriately dubbed “The loneliest road in America,” as it meanders across a desolate landscape with rare redeeming qualities to complement endless acres of sagebrush ranging from ochre to grey. Sane folks avoid this road, so traffic is rare--the exception being an occasional helmetless motorcyclist. I suppose there are no helmet laws in Nevada, or if there are, they are not enforced. This is hard for me, a nurse who cared for brain dead young men at a county hospital, to accept. Though its posted speed limits range an average of 70 to 75 miles per hour, Cecil sat the cruise control at 62. Those crazies we did encounter passed us, frequently saluting us with the finger. Lining both sides of Highway 50 at an elevation of 6500 feet, was a plant that resembled Scotch Broom, an attractive bush with mustard colored blossoms, adding eye-pleasing color to the sagebrush that dominated this area.

     Scattered thunderheads crowned the nearby mountaintops, but we experienced just a light sprinkling of rain. The winds at this altitude were consistent, and travelers inclined to take this road less traveled would do well to have extra clothing for comfort and warmth.