White Wolf

Inventoried Land with Wilderness Character (LWC) in the Battle Mountain BLM District


Current LWC Status: Proposed

Acres: 26,045

State Region: West Central

County: Esmeralda

Managing Agency:
Bureau of Land Management
Battle Mountain District Office
50 Bastian Rd. Battle Mountain, NV 89820
(775) 635-4000

Battle Mountain District BLM Website

Area Description:

White Wolf comprises an incredible diversity of landscape, from the dry and parched, Clayton Valley plains on south east margin, to the rugged basalt mesas on the eastern side to ancient, sedimentary desert hills in the southern part of the unit to sandy, granitic formation along the western margin and colorful rhyolite in the northern portion of the unit.   Elevations range from 5100 feet in the Clayton Valley to nearly 8000 feet atop the black-capped, basalt mesas in the center of the unit.  The plant community of this unit is equally diverse with low saltbush vegetation cholla cactus on the lower alluvial fans to low sage brush communities in the mid-elevations levels, to Mojave cactus including prickle pear, chollas, fishhook, and Joshua trees, to cliffrose and big brush sage and grassland communities of the highest elevations.   This unit supports both pinyon trees and extensive stands of Joshua trees and includes a portion of the Pinion-Joshua Transition Natural Area. Cow Camp Spring, just outside of the western border of this unit provides vital water for wildlife within this unit.  This unit hosts larger animals such as mule deer and big horn sheep. Raptors are plentiful as are rodents and other prey species.

The vast spaces, varied topography, and open woodland vegetation provide many outstanding opportunities for solitude throughout this unit. Pinyon trees dominate the vegetation through the higher elevations and intermix with Joshua trees in the lower elevations. The drainage systems of this unit are plentiful and complex. Canyons twist and turn in unexpected directions creating innumerable opportunities for finding secluded spots. The extremely rugged terrain in the core is comprised of numerous convoluted ridges offering adding to the opportunities to find secluded spots. The nearly 4000 feet of elevation difference across this unit multiplies the opportunities of solitude by the presence of vertical relief. The uppermost basal table lands are comprised of broad flat ridges separated by shallow valleys. These areas offer truly outstanding opportunities where a visitor can be alone with just the surrounding peaks and the open sky. This is truly a remote and isolated place where outstanding opportunities for solitude abound.

This unit offers outstanding opportunities for primitive and unconfined recreation. This area is not easy to explore, however, nearly every inch of this unit is accessible to the visitor with the determination and skills to traverse trackless wilderness. Birds and wildlife are present as well, providing opportunities for viewing and excellent hunting for skilled backcountry hunters. Mule deer, bighorn sheep, and chukar are some of the animals available for game.

White Wolf offers outstanding desert hiking and exploration opportunities, including excellent rock scrambling, route finding, and peak bagging. The colorful formations in the northern part of the unit combined with the rugged terrain and steep vertical relief, pinyon trees, Joshua tree, grasslands and cactus create outstanding opportunities for photography, painting and sketching throughout the unit. This area presents spectacular outstanding vistas at every turn and stunning views of the alpine White Mountains on the western horizon. The geology of the unit, encompassing basalt, rhyolite, granite and ancient sedimentary outcrops creates outstanding opportunities for rockhounding and geological sightseeing. The area is rich in archaeological resources for visitors to explore and investigate. Hiking, orienteering, backpacking, rock hounding, bird watching, primitive camping, horseback riding, burro and llama packing, hunting, and general sightseeing complete the possibilities for outstanding opportunities for primitive and unconfined recreation within this unit. The steep, rugged, and arid terrain of this unit provide visitors with a high degree of challenge.  

White Wolf is within one of the darkest regions of the United States. The opportunity for star gazing, and night sky photography are truly outstanding.


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