With its close proximity to Death Valley National Park, Mount Charleston and the Spring Mountains, Pahrump is no slouch when it comes to outdoor adventure. But visitors to this city will find just as many things to keep them busy in town as they will outside of Pahrump.
Sitting about an hour north of Las Vegas, the Pahrump Valley was originally inhabited by the Shoshone. With pioneers making their way west in the late 19th century and the worrisomely bleak Death Valley over the next mountain range, many early settlers decided to set up shop. Before long, the community depended on alfalfa, cotton and live stock ranching. While close to 40,000 people call Pahrump home today, it remained fairly small for many decades and was so sheltered that it didn’t have a telephone service or paved roads until the 1960s.
Visitors to the area should plan to check out the Mountain Motorsports Ranch, home to performance driving schools and a 3.5-mile road course filled with long straightaways, banked turns, blind drops and more. While you’re in the area, be sure to check out beautiful Lake Spring Mountain for rental stand up paddleboards and other watercraft rentals, private cabanas and beyond.
For the coffee-lover, the Pahrump Valley Roasters—the largest specialty coffee roaster in southern Nevada—is a great place for tours and tastings. The Sanders Family Winery offers award-winning wines to sample and annual grape stomps, concerts and dancing to enjoy. The “Artesian Cellars” is Pahrump’s newest winery with an outstanding tasting room and menu, offering a variety of wines. Also new to the Pahrump-area is Stonewise—a community-based, family-focused craft mead and cider maker and taproom, offering draft meads and ciders produced on-site that are crisp, refreshing, “sessionable” (less than 7% ABV), and served by the glass straight from their own taps.
There are luxurious golf courses, parks and museums, and of course no shortage of gaming, dining and lodging choices. The outdoor enthusiast will find adrenaline-pumping trails in the region’s high-desert terrain, while history buffs can explore several ghost towns in the area. Nearby Amargosa Valley has 20,000 acres of wetlands, and Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge provides a unique sanctuary to plants and animals found nowhere else in the world.
Pahrump is also known for its many annual events; Sanders Winery Concert Series offers live and entertaining performers while sipping on a variety of wine produced right on property. The grape stomp has become a fall favorite, with the famous stomp tradition. The Wild West Extravaganza, an amazing western celebration straight out of the 1880s. The annual silver state chili cook-off where you can sample award-winning red chili, chile Verde and so many more chili varieties. The POWWOW features tribal dancers in in elaborate native American regalia, while the beloved Pahrump Fall Festival has been a tradition for over 50 years. Each year, the event grows, with more vendors, concerts, a bigger carnival, rodeo and more.