Washoe Lake State Park hosting astronomy program, hikes in April | NevadaAppeal.com

Washoe Lake State Park hosting astronomy program, hikes in April

Sand dunes at Washoe Lake State Park.
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Washoe Lake State Park is hosting a variety of events during the month of April, including a basic astronomy program focusing on year-round (circumpolar) constellations, a wildflower walk, a full moon hike and a guided hike through the sand dunes.

A basic astronomy program that will focus on constellations that are visible year-round, including Ursa Major (with the Big Dipper), Cassiopeia, Cepheus, Ursa Minor and Draco, will be at 8 p.m. Friday, April 8. Meet at the Maze parking lot. After paying the fee at the entrance to the park, turn left; the Maze parking lot is the first parking lot on the right.

A moderate, one-mile, round trip wildflower walk to the gazebo along the Deadman’s Creek Trail will be at 1 p.m. Sunday, April 17. Participants should dress for the weather and bring plenty of water. A camera and binoculars are suggested. Meet at the Maze parking lot.

A full moon hike is planned at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 21. Reservations for this event are required; call 775-687-4319, or email washoelake@hdiss.net. The hike is an easy moonlit stroll from the Maze to the beach at Washoe Lake, approximately one mile round-trip. Participants will discuss nocturnal animals, including bats and coyotes.

A strenuous, five-mile round-trip sand dune trek hike is planned at 10 a.m. Sunday, April 24. Most of the hike is through loose sand, so good hiking shoes are recommended. Participants should dress for the weather and bring lunch, snacks and plenty of water. A camera and binoculars are suggested. This hike will take approximately four hours. Meet at the equestrian area parking lot. After paying the fee at the entrance to the park, turn right, pass the campground, and follow a short gravel road to the equestrian pavilion. Reservations are required; call 775-687-4319, or email washoelake@hdiss.net.

These events are included with the park’s entrance fee of $7 per vehicle. Nevada residents receive a $2 discount. Cash and checks are accepted; pay in the envelopes at the entrance to the park.

Washoe Lake State Park is at 4855 Eastlake Blvd. in Washoe Valley. For more information, call 775-687-4319, or email washoelake@hdiss.net.

The Nevada State Parks Passport Booklet is now available and may be picked up at any state park. Visitors who have their booklets stamped at 15 different parks will earn a free annual pass to all Nevada State Parks. The booklet, which serves as a travel aid as well as travelogue for park visitors, includes photos, a description of each park, lists of amenities, travel journal pages and spaces for validation stamps which have been designed to reflect each unique state park.