Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge

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OVERVIEW: About this Audio-Described Brochure

Welcome to the audio-described version of Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge’s official print brochure. Through text and audio descriptions of photos, illustrations, and maps, this version interprets the 24 page color brochure that visitors receive. The brochure explores the diverse environments of the refuge, some of its highlights, and information for planning your visit.

This audio version is 64 minutes and 43 seconds long, and is divided into 32 sections. A map of the refuge is at the end of the brochure. You can listen straight through or choose which sections to hear. Most sections are less than one minute.

A team audio-described this brochure during the February 2021 Descriptathon led by the UniD team from the University of Hawaii and NPS. We enjoyed working on it and hope you find it useful.

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OVERVIEW: Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge

Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, in Southern Nevada, is a twenty four thousand acre protected area including spring fed wetlands and alkaline desert uplands so unique that it is recognized as a wetland of international importance. Ash Meadows was named after the galleries of ash trees described in expedition notes from 1893. This desert oasis, a very rare and unique ecosystem, is recovering and playing an important role in global conservation efforts. The refuge strives to promote conservation management and awareness through environmental education, outreach programs, volunteerism, and visitor services programs. The actions of a few dedicated conservationists inspired president Truman to protect Devils Hole in 1952 as part of Death Valley National Park. This important historic event led to the establishment of Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge in 1984. 

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TITLE and Agency Identification

A narrow blue bar across the top of the brochure contains the words, "U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service." 

Below this bar is the title of this brochure, Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.

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IMAGE: Front cover

DESCRIBING: A large, landscape-oriented photograph. The right half of the image is visible on this page. The left half is visible on the back cover.

DESCRIPTION: A colorful under water view of a very rare pup fish swimming in a warm and bubbling spring known as the Devils hole. The pup fish is swimming from left to right close to the bottom of the spring along with dark green algae and sandy colored pebbles. Its body is silver with blue vertical stripes on its sides. It has a small, compressed head and an upturned mouth with a thick, chubby body with small, rounded fins.


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IMAGE and TEXT: Underground bubbles

DESCRIBING: A large, full-color photograph spanning two pages.

DESCRIPTION: A vast, blue sky meets fluffy, purple clouds that are hidden by the desert hillside of Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. The tan desert hillside is dotted with brown bushes and dried out trees that are nestled in sand and rock. Further down the hill showcases a landscape that is brought to life by water with green grass and bushes meeting up at the water’s edge. The blue stream brings life to grasses that poke through the water’s surface. The stream reflects the surrounding scrub and the sky.

CAPTION: Macduff Everton

Warm water from underground bubbles up through sand into clear spring pools. Silvery blue pupfish dart between swaying strands of dark green algae. Pebbled streams gurgle from hillside springs, sheltering snails smaller than a grain of rice. Birds bicker in nearby mesquite trees. A lizard scurries along the white powdery ground into shadows cast by a clump of rare Ash Meadows blazing star.               

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IMAGE and TEXT: A rare haven in the desert

DESCRIBING: This is a full page color photograph.

DESCRIPTION:  A small body of water, Crystal Springs, surrounded by vegetation. The body of water is blue green and there are patches of lighter green algae on the water surface.  In the lower foreground of the picture is a patch of yerba mansa, a white 6 petalled flower whose center is a conical white bumpy structure extending up from the center of the petals.  The flowers extend up about a foot and it has elongated arrowhead shaped leaves that surround the stems.  Interspersed among and surrounding the flowers are stalks of grass, some green, some brown, that extend above the flowers to the top of the picture in areas so are probably taller than a person.   In the background, to the rear of the water, are several trees with small leaves directly on the waters edge.  Behind them is a brown and green landscape of low hills with sparse vegetation. 

CAPTION: Yerba mansa at Crystal Springs

CREDIT: John & Karen Hollingsworth

Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge is a haven for rare native wildlife and for people. In a world of dwindling natural areas, especially wetlands, the refuge protects a unique piece of the Earth. Here you can escape the rush and blare of the city, admire the beauty of desert and wetlands, marvel at the variety of plant and animal life, and know it will be here for generations to come. 

Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge was established June 18, 1984. Managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the refuge protects threatened and endangered species, many of which occur nowhere else in the world. It encompasses over 23,000 acres of spring-fed wetlands and alkaline desert uplands. The name Ash Meadows refers to the abundance of ash trees once found in the area.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Endemic = found here and nowhere else on earth

IMAGE 1 of 2: Endemic spring-loving centaury

DESCRIBING: A small, square photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A group of four, five-petalled pink flowers called centaury. The flowers have a yellowish center and are on green stems that are very small. The flower itself is only about an inch across.

CAPTION: Endemic spring-loving centaury. 

CREDIT: Cyndi Souza U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

IMAGE 2 of 2: Water bug

DESCRIBING: Color photograph of an insect.

DESCRIPTION: The threatened Ash Meadows naucorid water bug is a beetle shaped bug that is oval shaped. The body is brown but looks dark in the center.  There are two distinct parts, the head and abdomen. It has 6 legs, the hind legs are longer and extend slightly behind the body, the center two are shorter. The front two extend from the top of the head and resemble scorpion pincers with a thick base closer to the head, and then thinner sections curved back toward the head along the thicker area.

CAPTION: The threatened Ash Meadows naucorid water bug is only a quarter inch long at maturity.

CREDIT: Pete Rissler  U.S. Geological Survey

Endemic equals here and nowhere else on earth.

Ash Meadows has the greatest concentration of endemic life in the United States and second greatest in all of North America. At least 26 endemic species have adapted to live in and around the waters of Ash Meadows.

Approximately 10,000 years ago, large lakes and rivers were common in southern Nevada. As the climate warmed, these waters began to dry up, recede, and separate. This left behind isolated species within and around small bodies of water.

Of these endemic species, five are listed as endangered and seven threatened with extinction. This is due to habitat destruction and competition with non-native species.

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IMAGE and TEXT: Why save endangered species?

DESCRIBING: A color photograph that fills the entire lower portion of the page.

DESCRIPTION: The threatened ash meadows milkvetch is a low growing flower.  The image is a close-up of the plant that shows several pink purplish flowers that  are in different stages of blooming.  The ones that are about to bloom are trumpet shaped and then expand into fan shapes as they bloom.  The flowers extend upwards from a mound of very small gray green leaves that are interspersed among the flowers.

CAPTION: Threatened Ash Meadows milkvetch. 

CREDIT: Shawn Goodchild/ U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service


Why Save Endangered Species?

The purpose of the Endangered Species Act is to protect threatened and endangered species and to conserve them in the wild. Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge has one of the highest numbers of threatened and endangered species of any national wildlife refuge.

Endangered means there is still time. When a species becomes endangered, it indicates something is wrong with the ecosystem. The measures we take to save endangered species help ensure the world we leave for our children is at least as healthy as the world out parents left for us.

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IMAGE and TEXT: Water

DESCRIBING: A rectangular photograph.

DESCRIPTION: Vertically oriented photo of an alkali seep habitat as part of a desert landscape. In the foreground, the soil is salt-white and mostly bare, with a few sparse desert grasses growing in clumps. A shallow, slow moving stream bisects the center of the scene. Looking upstream, a greater number of short, yellow grasses are visible. On the right side are a couple of stunted desert trees with green leaves. In the distance, a bare, rocky, brown mountain rises against a blue sky.

CAPTION: Alkali seep habitat. 


Water is the key natural resource that makes Ash Meadows a unique ecosystem in the dry Mojave Desert. Where does it come from? Over 100 miles to the northeast, water enters a vast underground aquifer system. This water, also known as fossil water, takes thousands of years to move through the ground. A geologic fault acts as an underground dam partially blocking the flow of water and forcing it to the surface into over 50 seeps and springs. Over 10,000 gallons per minute flow year round, most of which come from seven major springs.

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IMAGE and TEXT: Habitats of the refuge

Image 1 of 2

DESCRIPTION: Image is a vertically oriented photograph of a desert landscape. At the center and foreground of the scene are small, brown-white sand dunes leading away from the viewer and into the distance. Bordering these dunes on either side are clumps of dense, green and brown desert shrubs. In the distance are a pair of hazy, jagged mountains with a hazy blue sky above.

CAPTION: Sand Dunes by Peterson Reservoir


Image 2 of 2

DESCRIBING: Image is a horizontal photograph spanning two pages that fades toward the top of the image.

DESCRIPTION: The scene depicts a large spring with clear, blue water forming a wide, deep pool that occupies the majority of the lower left-hand side of the photo. The water has ripples on the surface, with algae mats visible beneath the surface and reeds growing above as the water recedes out of sight to the upper right-hand side of the image. On either side of the pool are dense stands of vibrant green plants including flowers, reeds, sedges, and one large tree overhanging the pool on the left-hand side. At the bottom of the photo is a wooden handrail that guides the viewer to a boardwalk on the right side of the image. Three people are leaning against the handrail as they peer over the side and gaze at the pool of water. To the right of the people is an interpretive panel and a bench.

CAPTION: Crystal Spring.

CREDIT: Judy Palmer/Amargosa Conservancy


Habitats of the Refuge

Wetlands, springs, and small streams are scattered throughout the refuge. Sandy dunes, rising up to 50 feet, appear in the central portions. Mesquite and ash groves flourish near wetlands and stream channels, while saltbush dominates drier areas. Creosote bush habitat occurs along the east and southeastern portions of the refuge. Alkali seeps are one of the most important habitat types, supporting the largest number of rare and threatened plants in the refuge.

Because it is such a unique environment, Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge has been listed as a Wetland of International Importance by the Ramsar Convention, an international treaty of 170 contracting parties. The goal of this convention is to conserve special wetlands throughout the world.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Wildlife On the Refuge


IMAGE 1 of 5

DESCRIBING: A large, vertical photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A photograph with it's right border faded shows people on a distant boardwalk with a broad landscape in the background. Eight people are meeting together, standing under a wooden shade structure with green metal benches. The scene is in bright sunlight. In the foreground, a wooden boardwalk zigzags across a field of tan, grey, and yellow desert plants. Two people in the near portion of the boardwalk are facing an informational sign mounted to the structure. Beyond the boardwalk and shade structure is a low, sand dune with clumps of green and tan plants on it. A line of taller, leafless brown shrubs is beyond the dune. Further in the distance is a dense stand of bushes with the lower slopes of a mountain beyond.

CAPTION: Crystal Reservoir

CREDIT: Dan Balduini USFWS

RELATED TEXT: Wildlife Observation. The best seasons for wildlife viewing are spring and fall. In the heat of summer, many animals are active after dark. Some animals hibernate in the winter. Being patient, coming early in the day and quietly observing from a respectful distance will allow you to see more wildlife. Protect yourself and the homes of wildlife by watching where you step. Never put your hands or feet where you cannot see them, such as in crevices or dense brush.

Our boardwalks identify species, and interpret natural and cultural history of the refuge.

IMAGE 2 of 5

DESCRIBING: A small, square photo beside the text.

DESCRIPTION: A pygmy blue butterfly with it's wings folded faces to the right, perched inside of a purple flower. The butterfly has grey wings with large, rusty-colored areas and black spots. The edges of it's wings are catching the sunlight. It's grey body with white undersides is between two, deep-purple flower parts. The flower, which the butterfly easily rests inside of, has three large petals. The petals are lavender streaked with dark purple. Behind the flower is a dense growth of tall grass and reeds, some green and some brown.

CAPTION: Pygmy blue butterfly feeding on an alkali mariposa lily.


IMAGE 3 of 5

DESCRIBING: A small, rectangular photo.

DESCRIPTION: Full body side view of a black tailed jack rabbit. The jack rabbit is facing to the left, stands on four feet, alert and apparently ready to jump. It is lit by sunlight that casts long shadows to the left and shines orange light on its long ears. The animal has brown, grey, and black fur and a short, black tail. It has a light colored ring around it's dark eye and whiskers, which reflect the sunlight, on it's face. The jack rabbit is poised on a flat surface of packed coarse sand with a few small rocks near its feet. In the foreground and background are plants that are out of focus and which are dappled also with sunlight and shadow.

CAPTION: Blacktail jackrabbit


RELATED TEXT: Watch for over 27 species of mammals such as blacktail jack rabbits, bats, and kangaroo rats. In the spring, baby desert cottontails hop along the boardwalk. These rabbits have adapted to handle the hot summers. Their light-colored fur keeps them cool, while their large ears help release heat, like a car’s radiator.

In summer, antelope ground squirrels are often seen with their white tails up over their backs, acting like a sunshade to keep them cool. This unique desert animal’s body temperature can go up to 110° F. To cool off, they lay down and stretch out their bodies on their burrow floor.

As the weather begins to cool, bobcats may become more active during daylight hours. These carnivores (meat-eaters) are well-camouflaged, and can run up to 30 miles per hour, making them difficult to see.

Winter brings a welcome surprise as desert bighorn sheep come to Point of Rocks for a drink. They are able to survive in the desert by going as long as eight days without water, then drinking nearly five gallons at one time.

IMAGE 4 of 5

DESCRIBING: A small, square photo that text wraps around.

DESCRIPTION: A close look at an antelope ground squirrel. The squirrel is facing the camera with it's tail curled over it's back, four feet firmly planted on the ground, and it's whiskers sticking straight out. The animal has reddish-brown fur on it's legs, dark-brown fur on it's back, and a stripe of cream-colored fur down it's back. The fur on it's tail is white with black edges. It's dark eyes are framed with light-colored eyebrows. It has a small, black nose. Each of the squirrel's individual toes and claws can be seen on it's two front and one of it's rear paws. The squirrel is poised on a surface of reddish gravel.

CAPTION: Antelope ground squirrel

CREDIT: Gerry Wykes

IMAGE 5 of 5

DESCRIBING: A square photo at the bottom of the page, as wide as the text.

DESCRIPTION: A head on view of a bighorn sheep, standing facing the viewer, with it's large, curved horns sticking out to the sides. The animal has large eyes and ears that stick out of the side of its head, below the horns. The sheep's eyes are wide open and focused on the viewer, showing a dull orange color and black pupils. The animal has uniform brown fur, except for its face. On its face, it has black and white fur around it's nose and mouth. There are some lighter patches of brown fur up the center of its face. The horns are large but unequal, with the horn to the viewer's left looking larger. The horn on the right seems to be curved more, which may make it look smaller. The horns appear worn and have a dull, ridged tan and black surface. The ridges seem to encircle each horn, giving them a corrugated look. Behind the bighorn sheep is a very blurry, orange and purple background which may be a mountain in the first or last sunlight of day.

CAPTION: Desert bighorn sheep

CREDIT: Steve Dudrow


Wildlife on the Refuge

The best seasons for wildlife viewing are spring and fall. In the heat of summer, many animals are active after dark. Some animals hibernate in the winter. Being patient, coming early in the day and quietly observing from a respectful distance will allow you to see more wildlife. Protect yourself and the homes of wildlife by watching where you step. Never put your hands or feet where you cannot see them, such as in crevices or dense brush.

Our boardwalks identify species and interpret natural and cultural history of the refuge. 

Watch for over 27 species of mammals such as blacktail jackrabbits, bats, and kangaroo rats. In the spring, baby desert cottontails hop along the boardwalk. These rabbits have adapted to handle the hot summers. Their light-colored fur keeps them cool, while their large ears help release heat, like a car’s radiator. In summer, antelope ground squirrels are often seen with their white tails up over their backs, acting like a sunshade to keep them cool. This unique desert animal’s body temperature can go up to 110° F. To cool off, they lay down and stretch out their bodies on their burrow floor. As the weather begins to cool, bobcats may become more active during daylight hours. These carnivores (meat-eaters) are well-camouflaged, and can run up to 30 miles per hour, making them difficult to see. Winter brings a welcome surprise as desert bighorn sheep come to Point of Rocks for a drink. They are able to survive in the desert by going as long as eight days without water, then drinking nearly five gallons at one time. 

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IMAGES and TEXT: Native Fish

IMAGE 1 of 3: Pupfish

DESCRIBING: A landscape-oriented photograph. 

DESCRIPTION: An Amargosa pupfish swims in clear water just above some mossy vegetation.  The pupfish is facing the viewer, and appears to only be a few inches long, with a mostly light blue body marbled with white.  The tip of its tail fin is dark blue, with a bottom fin a bright blue.  It has a green patch covering the area between its bulging eyes and extending a short ways along its spine.

CAPTION: Endangered Ash Meadows Amargosa pupfish.


IMAGE 2 of 3: Kings Spring

DESCRIBING: a landscape-oriented photograph.

DESCRIPTION: Kings Spring is shown as a small pool of water with wispy brown and green tall grass around its perimeter, dry tan rocks in the surrounding area, some short sage green vegetation growing sparsely and large bare rock hills in the distance.  Some of the submerged rocks in the spring are covered with a velvet green moss.  A portion of the pool has a pebbled bottom and the water in this section is a crystal clear blue.

CAPTION: Kings Spring at Point of Rocks.


IMAGE 3 of 3: Speckled dace

DESCRIBING: A small, landscape-oriented photograph.

DESCRIPTION: The speckled dace fish has a purplish-brown body with a horizontal stripe of silver running from the gills on its side toward its tail. The view is of the side, with the fish facing right. It is swimming in front of plants with grass like leaves.  The tail of the speckled dace is translucent.  It's bulging eye has a slivery gold rim and large black pupil.

CAPTION: Endangered Ash Meadows speckled dace



Native Fish

There are four native fish species found on the refuge. The easiest fish to see is the endangered Ash Meadows Amargosa pupfish. Walk around Kings Spring at Point of Rocks to look for the blue-colored males defending their territories. They are larger than the greenish females and most colorful during the spring and summer breeding season. These tiny fish can also be seen year-round at other major springs and streams such as Crystal and Longstreet.

The endangered Warm Springs pupfish habitat is less than one square mile. These amazing omnivores (animals that eat both plant and animal material) can survive in an inch or less of water. They have adapted to live in water as warm as 93°F.

Unlike the pupfish, endangered Ash Meadows speckled dace like to live in faster and cooler streams. They can grow to almost four inches and may live up to four years.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Reptiles and Amphibians

IMAGE 1 of 4: Gopher snake

DESCRIBING: A borderless photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A non-venomous gopher snake's body is coiled and layered on top of itself with its spade-shaped head resting on its midsection and tapered tail sticking out to the side.  The gopher snake has a tan body with a pattern of thick dark brown horizontal stripes on its top-side, and thinner brown vertical stripes along the side of its body.  Below its brown eye is a thin dark brown slash extending from the eye toward the mouth.  On the top of its head, between the eyes, are small brown dots.

CAPTION: Gopher snake

CREDIT: David St. George/USFWS

IMAGE 2 of 4: Nevada side-blotched lizard

DESCRIBING: A borderless photograph.

DESCRIPTION: The Nevada side-blotched lizard has a grayish-brown body with some areas having yellow dots and blotches and other areas having pacific blue dots and blotches.  The lizard in the photo is looking left, casting a shadow beneath its torso. Its legs are much darker than its body.  The sections with yellow include around its mouth and neck, on the sides of its back and belly, and down the upper portion of its front legs.  The sections with blue include the top of its head, down the broad middle section of its back and onto the upper portion of its back leg.  It has relatively long fingers with sizable claws on each end.

CAPTION: Nevada side-blotched lizard


IMAGE 3 of 4: Western zebra-tailed lizard

DESCRIBING: A small, square photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A Western zebra-tailed lizards stands on a ground of tan loose pebbles and dirt facing to the right.  His entire underside is white and his upper half is covered in a darker shade of brown and there's a vague shade of yellow along the side separating the light from dark.  This photo doesn't show his tail.  His long legs are bowed out to the sides and proportionately he has very long toes.  His front legs are in the posture much like a dog, straight down under his chest with head held high.  His skin folds and overlaps some around his neck.  He has small round mounds above his oval eyes.

CAPTION: Western zebra-tailed lizard


IMAGE 4 of 4: Chuckwalla

DESCRIBING: A large, borderless photograph filling the bottom of the page.

DESCRIPTION: A chuckwalla lizard facing to the left rests on a black rock that appears to have brown beneath its surface.  The skin of the chuckwalla is thick, mostly black and resembles the surface of the black rock.  It looks as though a paintbrush with bristles covered in a mixture of white, tan, and a bit of light blue was used to splatter blotches and marks along the chuckwalla's black scaly skin.  The toes on the front feet are brown.  The chuckwalla's head is spade-shaped with its jaws being the widest part, and nose coming to a rounded point.  It's mouth is slightly upturned, showing a 

CAPTION: Chuckwalla



Reptiles and Amphibians

Over twenty reptile and four amphibian species have been counted on Ash Meadows. In spring, snakes, such as the Great Basin gopher snake and California kingsnake, are seen coming out of hibernation. Lizards, such as the yellow-backed spiny and Great Basin whiptail, also begin to emerge. Look for the most commonly seen reptile, the Nevada side-blotched lizard, sunning itself on rocks.

Watch for large chuckwalla lizards around Point of Rocks feeding on buds, flowers, and fruits of a variety of desert plants. Chuckwallas, when alarmed, run into rock crevices and inflate their bodies by gulping air. This wedges them in place and makes it hard for a predator to capture them.

During the heat of mid-summer, many reptiles and amphibians become nocturnal, but a large variety of lizards can still be seen on the refuge boardwalks. Watch for the fast sprinting western zebra-tailed lizard. These lizards can run up to 18 miles per hour standing on just their two back feet. Please don’t try to pick them up. They have adapted to make their tail break off to escape predators. By late fall, as temperatures drop to the 40s, larger lizards and snakes begin to hibernate.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Birds

IMAGE 1 of 4: Greater roadrunner

DESCRIBING: A large, landscape-oriented photograph filling the top of the page.

DESCRIPTION: A long, pointed bird running along a red gravel surface. The roadrunner is lean, with a long neck and narrow body shape. The bird has a long, blue grey beak and long, featherless legs with large, sharp talons. It is a mottled brown and white color, with a hint of blue and white above its eye, and long, darker tail feathers. 

CAPTION: Greater roadrunner.

CREDIT: Aaron Ambos

IMAGE 2 of 4: Phainopepla

DESCRIBING: A portrait-oriented borderless photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A stout, jet-black bird facing to the right while perched on a branch. The bird’s feathers have an almost iridescent sheen, but their deep black color obscures any other details. The bird has a short, pointed beak used for eating berries and insects. Its eyes are crimson red. Lastly, the feather on top of the bird’s head are raised at attention, similar to that of a cockatoo. 

CAPTION: Phainopepla.

CREDIT: Aaron Ambos

IMAGE 3 of 4: Gambel’s quail

DESCRIBING: A small, square photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A squat bird with short tail feathers standing on some rocky soil. The bird is mostly grey, with mottled brown and white wings, a black throat, and brown head. There is a white streak above the eye encircling the head and another behind the eye that streaks down and towards the rear of the bird. The bird has a distinct top knot of feathers that protrudes similar to an antenna.

CAPTION: Gambel’s quail.

CREDIT: L. Page Brown/Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology

IMAGE 4 of 4: Northern harrier 

DESCRIBING: A borderless photograph.

DESCRIPTION: An aerodynamic, missile-shaped bird of prey captured mid-flight as the bird flies to the viewer’s left. The bird is almost uniformly brown, but the underside of the wings are white with smaller dark brown bands. Both of the bird’s wings are shown during the down stroke of flight. There is a crescent of lighter brown feathers at the back of the bird’s head. The tail feathers are long and have dark tips. The bird’s beak is dark grey and hooks downward. 

CAPTION: Northern harrier.

CREDIT: Martin Meyer



Ash Meadows is one of the largest oases in the Mojave Desert, frequented by a wide diversity of migratory birds. Over 275 different species have been recorded on the refuge. Visit the refuge visitor center to pick up a complete bird checklist.

Birds are most visible during spring migration (April-May) and fall migration (August-September). Look for roadrunners and phainopepla at Crystal Spring and Point of Rocks.

A year-round resident, the topnotted Gambel’s quail is the best adapted to arid environments of any quail. Quails are generally monogamous (one mate for life). Their family group is often two adults and up to 16 young. Watch for their covey (a large social group usually of 40 or more individuals) foraging for plants and sometimes insects in early morning or late afternoon.

Walk around the wetlands in the winter to see the largest variety of water birds. You can often see northern harriers and mountain bluebirds hovering over the drab winter landscape in search of their prey.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Plants and Flowers

IMAGE 1 of 4: Sunray

DESCRIBING: A small, rectangular photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A yellow flower blooming atop a green-grey stalk. The flower has bright yellow petals splayed out circularly around a dull, yellow center. Perched atop the center of the flower is a small, orange and brown butterfly with white spots on its wings.  

CAPTION: Threatened Ash Meadows sunray.


IMAGE 2 of 4: Niterwort

DESCRIBING: A rectangular photograph.

DESCRIPTION: A singular green plant stalk growing out of some barren, white alkali soil. The stalk is fern-green in color with waxy, triangular clusters of oval-shaped buds radiating outward from the center. The buds appear grainy, as if coated in sand. A single, five-leaf flower has bloomed, revealing a deep fuchsia interior and pollen-bearing stalks.

CAPTION: Endangered Amargosa niterwort


IMAGE 3 of 4: Screwbean mesquite pods

DESCRIBING: A small, square photograph.

DESCRIPTION: Some screwbean mesquite pods growing on the branch of a mesquite tree. The pods, which resemble a coiled spring, are yellow to orange in color and grow in tight clusters. The tree has bright green leaves, with each leaf consisting of smaller, oval-shaped leaflets. 

CAPTION: Screwbean mesquite pods.

CREDIT: Beth St. George/USFWS

IMAGE 4 of 4: Yellow desert prince’s plume

DESCRIBING: A borderless photograph filling the bottom of the page.

DESCRIPTION: Image shows the side of a desert road where hundreds of desert wildflowers are all blooming in a large, open field. The plants, which are all growing clustered together, are lime-green with tall, pointed stalks emerging high above the rest of the plant. The stalks are covered in bright yellow flowers. In the background of the image is a stand of medium-sized, green trees and a range of rocky, brown mountains.

CAPTION: Along the roads in late spring, look for the bright yellow desert prince’s plume. This plant, high in selenium, can poison animals grazing on its leaves. Native Americans boiled the plant to remove the selenium and used it as a spinach-like food.



Plants and Flowers

The average rainfall in Ash Meadows is three inches per year. In years of abundant rainfall, the refuge may have a display of over 330 species of flowers and shrubs in bloom. The threatened Ash Meadows milkvetch and threatened Ash Meadows sunray begin flowering early in spring. Walk around the slopes of Point of Rocks to see some of our eight species of cacti.

The most common tree on the refuge is screwbean mesquite. In the hot summer months, animals and people use it as shade. The tree gets its name from the coiled or screw-shaped pods found in bunches during summer. Native Americans cured the pods and ground them into flour.

How do the plants survive the heat? Many desert annuals avoid the heat and drought by surviving as seeds in the soil, often for decades, until favorable conditions occur. When the time is right they quickly sprout, flower and drop seed.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Early History

DESCRIBING: A square, black-and-white historic photograph.

DESCRIPTION: Two people with dark skin sitting on a blanket on the ground, each angled towards one other and facing the camera. They both have dark hair that extends below their shoulders and the woman on the right has bare feet.  Both are wearing light colored tops, perhaps made out of deer skin that have sleeves that are elbow length and are fringed along the sleeves. They are both wearing skirts of the same material that have slits down the side and fringe, you can see the knee of the woman on the left and left leg of the woman on the right that is bent as if kneeling. On both of their heads are bowl-shaped woven hats. The hat on the woman on the left has has a broad decorative design on the lower part of the hat. The hat on the woman on the right has a slimmer decorative band at the top and a wider band below. The woman on the left is pointing with her right hand, first finger extended to something that is to the right and below the woman on the right. They are sitting on a piece of fabric similar to their clothing that also has fringes. In front of the woman on the right is a dark shape that resembles a large oyster shell. The location is likely desert since the ground below them looks like hard-packed soil and the vegetation is sparse a clump of dried grass on the right side of the picture. There is one split trunk tree to the rear of the woman on the left and indistinct dark vegetation fills the rest of the background.

CAPTION: Southern Paiute Women, 1873.

CREDIT: Nevada Historical Society


Early History

Native Americans lived in Ash Meadows for thousands of years, settling around spring pools and meadows. Families managed mesquite groves to enhance the size and taste of the nutritious seed pods. For hundreds of years, Native Americans cultivated corn, beans, squash, and sunflowers in small fields irrigated with spring water. From their Ash Meadows homes they traveled to the mountains to gather pinyon pine nuts, hunt mountain sheep, and exchange news with friends and relatives.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Later History

IMAGE 1 of 2: Jack Longstreet

DESCRIBING: A narrow, black-and-white image, evidently creased with age. 

DESCRIPTION: The image is of a white male in later middle age. He is shown scowling at the camera, from the knees up. He has a full white beard and mustache and white hair that sticks out to the side over his ears and under his hat.  His hat is light-colored, brimmed with a high rounded center tilted towards his left side.  He is wearing working clothes, a dark jacket over a lighter-colored shirt buttoned all the way up that has two chest pockets.  His pants are faded in places and resemble denim in texture.  His left hand is partially in his pants pocket, with the thumb hooked in, his right is holding the top of a cane only partially visible in the picture.  The frame of a doorway is visible behind his head.  A building with wooden floors is partially visible directly behind him.

CAPTION: Jack Longstreet settled in Ash Meadows from 1894 to 1899. This infamous prospector, gunman, and horse breeder used spring water to cool his stone cabin. The restored cabin stands near Longstreet Spring.

CREDIT: Nevada Historical Society, ca. 1920

IMAGE 2 of 2: Restored cabin

DESCRIBING: Small, rectangular color image of a restored cabin. 

DESCRIPTION:   The cabin walls are made of light colored rectangular stones that are held together with a light colored matrix.  On the left side of the picture there is a rectangular opening into the cabin that has wood around the interior of all the sides.  There are two wood beams extending out from below the roof of the cabin, one at the peak, and one part way to the wall on the left.  Wood is visible on the underside of the eaves.  The cabin appears to be set in a green meadow with short grass that is barely visible on the left side of the image.  In the background are the outline of some trees and distant blue mountains.  Overhead is a clear blue sky.

CAPTION: The restored cabin stands near Longstreet Spring.

CREDIT: Nevada Historical Society, ca. 1920


Later History

Many descendants of the Ash Meadows Native Americans live today among the nearby Pahrump Southern Paiute and Timbisha Shoshone of Death Valley. The old archaeological sites, historical home locations, mesquite groves, and crystal pure water of Ash Meadows remain important elements of modern Paiute and Shoshone culture.

The Amargosa Valley is also rich in pioneer history. Many settlers were interested in the prospects of mining or farming.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Maintaining a healthy desert ecosystem

IMAGE 1 of 3: Replanting 

DESCRIBING: Small, rectangular color image. 

DESCRIPTION: A young woman with long, dark hair. She is planting something in the ground. She is kneeling on the ground facing to the left and her hair falls forward covering most of her face.  She is wearing an oversize teal sweatshirt whose sleeves cover most of her hands and purple pants.   The area where she is planting is black and brown open soil that has recently been burned.  Behind her patches of grass are starting to sprout.  In the near background to the left of the image are multiple dark trunks of a tree emerging from a single location with taller grass among the trunks.  Behind that is bright green grass and the scattered bare trunks of trees.

CAPTION: Replanting after wildfire.

CREDIT: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

IMAGE 2 of 3: Salt cedar trees 

DESCRIBING: A rectangular, color image of a salt cedar tree.

DESCRIPTION:  In the center of the image is the main tall tree in the middle distance, it has generally light bark although the base of the trunk is darker colored.  From a distance the leaves appear as large, feathery clumps extending from upward spreading branches and the leaves are indistinguishable from one another.  The colors of the leaves range from rust to a golden brown to a dark sage green mixed on the tree.  There are smaller trees to either side of the main tree that are not the same height and in the background is an open wall of other salt cedars.  The ground they are in is dry with cracks and  ridges that make it look like large scales.  The color of the ground ranges from brown in the foreground to a lighter tan closer to the tree.  The sky is a cloudless bright blue. 

CAPTION: Non-native salt cedar trees use a lot of water and add salt to the soil, making it difficult for native plants to survive. The refuge strives to replace salt cedar with natives.

CREDIT: Jeff Foott

IMAGE 3 of 3: Background landscape image

DESCRIBING: A sepia toned image of an arid landscape behind the text and other images.    

DESCRIPTION: There are small shrubs scattered throughout the fore and middle ground of the image.  On the left middle ground of the image is a larger tree whose light colored bent trunk stands out against darker leaves.  There are trees in the background that have darker leaves forming a line generally from east to west. Behind them rises a hump shaped mountain with an uneven skyline.  The slope of another mountain rises to on the left of the picture.  There is a line of white puffy clouds extending from left to right in an otherwise clear sky.


Maintaining a healthy ecosystem.

Humans used Ash Meadows for thousands of years with few impacts to the wildlife. Large-scale disturbance began in the early 1960s when Carson Slough was drained and mined for peat. It was once the largest wetland in Southern Nevada, teeming with ducks and wading birds, pupfish and speckled dace, snails, and insects.

Development continued in the 1970s and early 1980s as more streams were diverted and channelized. In a “blink” of evolutionary time, wetlands were drained, earth moved, and roads developed.

The sensitive endemic species barely survived this habitat destruction and today are continually threatened with new challenges. One of the biggest challenges for native species is competition with over 100 species of non-native plants and animals, such as crayfish, bass, and salt cedar trees, for the available habitat—food, water, shelter and space.

Refuge staff have started the difficult process of reconstructing and restoring this unique habitat. We work to increase public knowledge and understanding through environmental education and wildlife-related recreational opportunities. Ash Meadows, with your help, will once again be a wetland flourishing with endemic plant and animal life.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Devils Hole

IMAGE 1 of 3: Pupfish

DESCRIBING: A horizontally-oriented, rectangular color image. 

DESCRIPTION: Four endangered Devils Hole pupfish. All pupfish share a similar blue color except for two in the front that  highlighted a white streak at the top and the bottom of the pupfish from the light of a flash camera. The pupfish in the center of the photograph is the focal point of the photo and is looking off camera. Two of the pupfish are in the background and are blurry but the silhouette of the pupfish is identifiable, one pupfish is to the left with a side profile facing left off camera and the other one is behind the focal pupfish looking right off camera. The pupfish to the right of the pupfish in the center of the photo is looking directly into the camera with its mouth wide open and both eyes are visible. 

CAPTION: Endangered Devils Hole pupfish

CREDIT: Olin Feuerbacher

IMAGE 2 of 3: Leaf in background

DESCRIBING: Faded color image in the background behind the main body text. 


IMAGE 3 of 3: Beavertail cactus

DESCRIBING: A full-color, rectangular image which spans the entire bottom of the page. 

DESCRIPTION: The large Beavertail cactus Each pad of cactus is green with brown dimples almost evenly dispersed on the fruit of the cactus. Each pad is a flat almost perfect oval with its fruit sitting on top of each pad. The fruit itself is a smaller oval that sits on top of the pad. The fruit is wider than the pad itself, it shares similar characteristics such as the green color and with a more pronounced orange brown dimples and small spines to protect the fruit. Per each pad it varies between one fruit or two fruit per cactus. At the top of almost every fruit sits an unopened pink flower. One cactus features a fully opened pink flower that is wider than the fruit itself. The side profile of the flower features dozens of long pink rounded petals that are reaching towards the sky.

CAPTION: Beavertail cactus blooming near Devils Hole.



Devils Hole

The entire population of the Devils Hole pupfish live in a water-filled cavern cut into a rocky hillside where they’ve been isolated for 10,000 to 20,000 years. The pupfish, which are less than one inch in length, primarily feed and spawn on a small rock shelf near the surface.

In 1952, Devils Hole became part of Death Valley National Monument. Ten years later, the National Park Service began monitoring the water levels and by 1967 the Devils Hole pupfish was officially listed as endangered. Water levels in Devils Hole dropped in the late 1960s to early 1970s as Ash Meadows was intensively farmed and developed. In 1976, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to limit groundwater pumping to guarantee enough water to cover part of the rock shelf needed by the fish.

By the early 1980s, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed three more fish as endangered and designated 21,000 acres around Devils Hole as essential habitat. This area protected the groundwater needed for the pupfish and other listed species to survive. By 1984, the Service purchased the nearby land and designated it Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.

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IMAGES and TEXT: Enjoying the refuge, Rules and Regulations

DESCRIBING: Three columns of small, square illustrations with corresponding text next to each. 

NOTE: This is a partial list of common rules and regulations. Previously dated brochures may contain outdated regulations. Please contact the refuge office with specific questions.


Enjoying the Refuge.

Hours: The refuge is open daily from sunrise to sunset. Please contact the refuge headquarters for current information on visitor center hours.

IMAGE 1 of 18 DESCRIPTION: A car icon.

CAPTION: Refuge Access

RELATED TEXT: All motorized vehicles and drivers must be properly licensed and are restricted to designated roads.

All roads on the refuge are unpaved. During wet fall and winter months, roads may be flooded. Some roads are unimproved and impassable for passenger cars. Please contact the refuge headquarters for current access information.

IMAGE 2 of 18 DESCRIPTION: A restroom icon.

CAPTION: Restrooms and Trash

RELATED TEXT: Flush toilets are available at the visitor center. Non-flush toilets and trash cans are provided at various locations throughout the refuge.

IMAGE 3 of 18

DESCRIPTION: A trash icon.

CAPTION: Restrooms and Trash

RELATED TEXT: Littering is strictly prohibited. Please help us by placing your trash in the designated receptacles or by taking it with you when you leave the refuge.

IMAGE 4 of 18 



RELATED TEXT: Pets must be leashed at all times, except when used in association with legal hunts. During the hot summer months, please do not leave pets in vehicles; we suggest you leave them home. Please help protect our fragile soil and habitats by keeping pets out of the water and on the boardwalk.

IMAGE 5 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: Hunting icon.

CAPTION: Hunting.

RELATED TEXT: Seasonal hunting is permitted in designated areas subject to all applicable state, federal and refuge regulations. Please refer to the hunting flyer or contact the refuge headquarters for more information. Only species listed on the flyer may be hunted.

IMAGE 6 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: Picnicking icon.

CAPTION: Picnicking.

RELATED TEXT: Picnic facilities are available at the Visitor Center and Point of Rocks.

IMAGE 7 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: Boating icon.

CAPTION: Boating.

RELATED TEXT: Only non-motorized boats or boats with electric motors are permitted on the refuge, and only on Crystal and Peterson Reservoirs. Watercraft must be in compliance with all applicable state and federal rules. Help protect your boat and Nevada’s waters by checking for aquatic hitchhikers, such as the quagga mussel. For more information, visit

IMAGE 8 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: Hiker icon.

CAPTION: Hiking.

RELATED TEXT: Year-round hiking is permitted along designated refuge roads and trails. Refuge boardwalks provide an up-close view of the springs, fish, and plants of Ash Meadows without disturbing the fragile habitat.

IMAGE 9 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: No fishing icon.

CAPTION: Fishing.

RELATED TEXT: Due to the presence of endangered fish, fishing is prohibited. Fish that are not native to the area compete with and/or eat our native endangered fish. Placing fish in the springs, streams, or other water on the refuge is in violation of state and federal laws.

IMAGE 10 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: No swimming icon.

CAPTION: Swimming.

RELATED TEXT: Swimming in or entering spring pools and streams is strictly forbidden. The endangered fish rely upon algae for food and as a place to lay their eggs. Swimming destroys the fragile algae. Please help conserve this valuable habitat.

IMAGE 11 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: Two icons side-by-side. No fires and no camping.

CAPTION: Camping & fires.

RELATED TEXT: Camping and overnight parking are prohibited. The nearest public campgrounds are located in Death Valley National Park. No open fires, wood cutting, or collecting permitted.

IMAGE 12 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: Two icons side-by-side. No collecting artifacts and no collecting plants icons.

CAPTION: Animal and plant life, artifacts.

RELATED TEXT: Disturbance of cultural resources of any kind is strictly prohibited. Artifacts, such as arrowheads, grinding stones and rock art, are protected under federal law. Collecting or attempting to collect animals, plants, or other natural objects is prohibited.

IMAGE 13 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: No firearms icon.

CAPTION: Firearms.

RELATED TEXT: There is no target shooting allowed on the refuge. Discharging firearms unless participating in a hunting program is illegal. Contact the refuge headquarters for current hunting regulations.

IMAGE 14 of 18.



RELATED TEXT: Operation of all off-highway vehicles (OHVs) is prohibited on the refuge. To protect the fragile habitat, please park in designated parking areas.

IMAGE 15 of 18.

DESCRIPTION: No horseback riding icon.

CAPTION: Horseback riding.

RELATED TEXT: Horseback riding is not allowed on the refuge.

IMAGE 16 of 18.

DESCRIBING: A large, rectangular image at the top of the page.

DESCRIPTION: Three adults dressed in warm clothing stand together facing away from the viewer. The sunlight casts long shadows to their right. One of them is standing before a tripod-mounted viewing scope. At their feet is white, chalky soil with sparse, brown vegetation. They are looking out upon a large pond of calm water surrounded by reddish grasses and reeds. In the distance, dozens of ducks can be seen swimming on the pond. Many of the ducks leave wakes behind as they swim through the still water. Beyond the pond are sunlit hills and the silhouette of a large mountain, even further away.

CAPTION: Birdwatching at Crystal Marsh


IMAGE 17 of 18.

DESCRIBING: A small, rectangular image, embedded among the icons.

DESCRIPTION: Three velvet ash trees, with brilliantly-colored orange and gold leaves, are in the foreground of a flat plain with sandy soil and patchy covering of tall, brown grass and thistles. The trees each have many trunks and are almost bushy in appearance. In the distance behind them are more trees full of orange and gold leaves. A large mountain, bathed in sun and shadow, stands above the distant trees beneath a blue sky with wispy clouds.

CAPTION: Fall represents change as the velvet ash trees turn golden.


IMAGE 18 of 18.

DESCRIBING: An image of a lizard at the bottom of the page.

DESCRIPTION: A yellow-backed spiny lizard is viewed from the side. It has turned and raised its head to look back toward the viewer with its left eye, which is black ringed with gold. The lizard has a dark stripe across its throat, which tapers behind its shoulder. A blue patch appears above the stripe, below the lizard's chin. Sunlight shining on it emphasizes the contours of the scales down its back and sides. The grain of the wooden plank on which the lizard rests compared to the animal's size suggest that this is a small lizard, only three or four inches long.

CAPTION: Yellow-backed spiny lizard


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TEXT: Safety tips be prepared

IMAGE: Desert mistletoe

DESCRIPTION: Spreading out from and around the bare branches of a short, bush like tree is a fluffy, crimson red desert mistletoe plant. The surrounding area is covered in light green and brown brush with a large tan and brown steeply sloped hill in the distance. The mistletoe grows in both small and large bunches, sometimes covering an entire section of the tree it grows on, and in other sections just growing in a smaller grapefruit sized bulbs.

CAPTION: Parasitic desert mistletoe covering a mesquite tree.


Related Text:

Safety Tips to be Prepared

The desert is a harsh, unpredictable environment where conditions can be extreme. Few visitor facilities exist, cell phone coverage is very limited, and water is not available … so be prepared! Don’t travel or hike alone. Leave your travel plans with someone and carry a first-aid kit.

Protect yourself from the sun by wearing a hat, light-colored clothing, and by using sunscreen. Avoid extreme mid-day heat and always drink plenty of water—don’t ration it! During the summer, a person can require at least one gallon of water per day.

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TEXT: Weather


Summer temperatures regularly exceed 100° F (38° C), broken by occasional quick, severe thunderstorms. By mid-September the temperature will drop into the 90s. Winter temperatures frequently drop below freezing with occasional snow or rainstorms. 

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IMAGES and TEXT: Signs protect visitors and resources

DESCRIBING: Images of four black-and-white U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service signs above a color landscape photograph. Each of the signs is rectangular, taller than wide, with black text on a white background. 

IMAGE 1 of 4: National Wildlife Refuge sign

DESCRIPTION: Sign which reads, "National Wildlife Refuge: Unauthorized Entry Prohibited."  An image of the National Wildlife Refuge System's symbol, the goose, is on the sign.  

IMAGE 2 of 4: Public hunting area sign

DESCRIPTION: Sign which reads, "Public hunting area: Limiited public fishing under federal and state laws. Consult manager for current regulations."  An image of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's logo is on the sign. 

IMAGE 3 of 4: Closed area sign

DESCRIPTION: Sign which reads, "Area beyond this sign closed: all public entry prohibited."   An image of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's logo is on the sign. 

IMAGE 4 of 4: No hunting zone sign

DESCRIPTION: Sign which reads, "No hunting zone." An image of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's logo is on the sign. 

Please respect all signs posted on the refuge.

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MAP: Visit nearby refuges

DESCRIBING: Rectangular map of Southern Nevada, with Las Vegas near the center, with an inset showing the entire state to the left.  

DESCRIPTION: There are 4 National Wildlife Refuges shown in the area northwest, northeast and north of Las Vegas as well as one National Park in California.  At the start of Nevada's southern tip is Las Vegas, with Lake Mead to its east.  Nevada boarders California and Death Valley National Park to the left, Arizona to the right, and both California and Arizona at the tip of its southern point.  Interstate 15 runs southwest to northeast through Las Vegas.  Directly above the city is a large swath of land that is the Desert National Wildlife Refuge, whose size dwarfs the other refuges shown on this map.  Near the northeast edge of this refuge is Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge.  Route 93 runs along the eastern edge of Desert N W R and Pahranagat N W R.  To the east of Desert N W R, just north of Interstate 15 and east of Route 93 and west of state route 168 is Moapa Valley National Wildlife Refuge.  From Las Vegas the circular section of road named Route 215 connects to both route 95 to the north, and state route 160 to the south.  Both route 95 and 160 head northwest, 160 branches into state route 190 just after the town of Pahrump.  The sections of 95 and 190 near the California border form the north and south brackets of the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge.  

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IMAGE and TEXT: Desert National Wildlife Refuge

DESCRIBING: A small, square, color image. 

DESCRIPTION: A bighorn sheep stands facing left, its large curved horns have a corrugated texture and its face and frontside have a shadow cast on them with the sun shining on its neck, back, and stomach.  The sheep's fur is a light brown, with sections appearing as more gray. Its oblong ears sit behind and below its eyes, beneath the curve of the horn. 


Desert National Wildlife Refuge. The largest refuge in the lower 48 states with over 1.5 million acres. Drive through scenic desert bighorn sheep habitat, get a glimpse of the endangered Pahrump poolfish or the many bird species at Corn Creek Visitor Center, hike in the backcountry, or spend a night camping under the stars. 702/879 6110

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IMAGE and TEXT: Moapa Valley National Wildlife Refuge

DESCRIBING: A small, square, color image.

DESCRIPTION: A Moapa dace fish swims left, showing the full length of the fish.  It has a mostly brown body with horizontal streaks of gold and darker brown patterned sections.  The fish has a translucent tail with a black spot at the base.  Between its eyes and gills is a shimmering patch of gold.  Its bulging eye has a large dark pupil at the center.  


Moapa Valley National Wildlife Refuge. Warm water springs from the hillsides give life to the Moapa Valley. Refuge staff and their partners work to restore habitat for the endangered Moapa dace. See the dace and other native wildlife along an interpretive trail and scenic overlook. 775/725 3417

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IMAGE and TEXT: Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge

DESCRIBING: A small, square, color image.

DESCRIPTION: Side view of two cinnamon teal ducks, one male one female swimming right, one after the other, across a calm body of water leaving a slightly disturbed wake of water behind them.  The female duck is in front; her feathers are brown with a darker shade of brown around the edges.  The trailing male is aptly named; his head and feathers appear as a reddish, cinnamon brown.  He has a stark red eye.  The water's reflection shows that there is vegetation growing in the distance, and the females reflected portrait is captured perfectly on the water's surface.  


Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge. This “valley of shining waters” bordering the Mojave and Great Basin deserts offers a resting spot for migratory birds and waterfowl. Enjoy this desert oasis while camping, fishing, hunting or observing wildlife. 775/725 3417

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MAP: Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge

DESCRIBING:  A large, two-page map of Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge with details about distances, attractions, and facilities on the refuge. The large map shares a page with a much smaller map, showing the refuge's location in Southern Nevada. There is a map legend in the lower left. 

DESCRIPTION:  The refuge boundary is shown with north at the top and a visitor center near the middle, with most of the land to it's north and southeast. Springs, streams, and reservoirs are also shown. There are two entrances to the refuge, with a main road entering from the west and another road from the south. Both roads lead to the visitor center, which also has restrooms, a picnic area, and a self-guided interpretive trail. The west entrance is 2.5 miles from the visitor center and the south entrance is six miles. From the visitor center, Longstreet Spring and Cabin are 3.4 miles to the north, along Longstreet Road. At this location, there are restrooms, an information kiosk, and a self-guided interpretive trail. From the visitor center, Devils Hole (a part of Death Valley National Park), is 3.6 miles to the east along Devils Hole Road. There is an information kiosk at Devils Hole. From the visitor center, Point of Rocks is 4.1 miles to the southeast along Point of Rocks Road. There is a restroom, information kiosk, picnic area, and a self-guided interpretive trail at this location. A spring at Point of Rocks is the source of two streams on the map, which flow to the west and southwest. Crystal Reservoir is 1.4 miles south of the visitor center along the Crystal Loop Road. Peterson Reservoir is 3.4 miles northwest of the visitor center along PetersoDen Road. A portion of the road near Peterson Reservoir is unmaintained. 

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MAP: Surrounding area

DESCRIBING: Small inset map showing the location of Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge in relationship to nearby towns and roads. 

DESCRIPTION: A wider view of the Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge that shows its spatial relationship to nearby roads, towns, and intersections. It is oriented cardinal north. The refuge is shaded light tan with a darker brown border. The 4 main roads highlighted form a rough square around the refuge. To the north of the refuge is US Hwy 95, which indicates that the road leads to Las Vegas. To the east is Hwy 160, which connects US Hwy 95 with the town of Pahrump in the southeast part of the map. To the south is Hwy 190, which connects the town of Pahrump in the east with the intersection of Death Valley Junction to the west. A south entrance to the refuge is located off of this road. To the west is Hwy 373, which connects US 95 to the north with the Death Valley Junction intersection in the south. A western entrance to the refuge connects to Hwy 373. 

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IMAGE: Back cover

DESCRIBING: A large, landscape-oriented photograph. The right half of the image is visible on the front cover. The left half is visible on this page.

DESCRIPTION: Underwater view of the silvery blue tail of the pup fish as its swimming away along the dark green algae on the bottom of the spring. This image is a continuation of that from the front cover. 


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OVERVIEW: Accessibility

This publication will be made available in an alternative format upon request.

Equal opportunity to participate in and benefit from programs and activities of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is available to all individuals regardless of physical or mental disability. For more information, contact the U.S. Department of the Interior, Office of Equal Opportunity, 1849 C Street, NW, Washington, DC,  20240. 

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OVERVIEW: More Information

ADDRESS: 610 E. Spring Meadows Road , Amargosa Valley, NV 89020 

PHONE: 775-372-5435


Nevada Relay Service
TTY 800-326-6868 
Voice 800-326-6888 

Federal Relay Service
TTY and Voice 800-877-8339 

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
PHONE: 800-344-9453 

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