Exploring Nevada | Offroading in the Desert With an FJ Cruiser

A friend of mine once joked that when people have four-wheel-drive vehicles, we are always looking for dirt roads to take them on to. Every dusty road leading to gods know where becomes an unbearable temptation. In Georgia, I didn’t feel particularly tempted. In the desert, it’s hard to resist taking that sharp right turn and seeing what your vehicle is made of.

That said, I’m no hardcore off-roader and I certainly don’t take Big Boy Samson rock crawling. So, what is it about the dirt roads that grab my attention? Well, there are actually quite a few reasons I’m looking forward to returning to the rugged Nevada terrain in the spring.

Lake-side View

The primary reason I spent time on dirt roads was to see the lake. The water was freezing all three or four times that I visited, so I originally had no intention of going in. The first day I drove down to the lake, I actually sat in the back of the truck with the door open and worked on my novel. That blue water can really get the creative juices flowing.


Last week, I talked exclusively about the kayaking in Nevada. It saddens me to think that it may be next spring before I can take this back out onto the water, but we’ll see. The kayak’s permanent location is the back of the truck, so you never know what great spot I may come across next.


The most secluded camping spots in Nevada will require a trek down a dirt road. Even better, these camping spots are free. Stewart’s Point had every rig imaginable and the camping spots are nicely spread out. You can tell by the photos that it’s perfectly possible to go camping and have no neighbours or secure an entire spot for yourself and your friends.


You probably realized by now, but the sunsets are amazing in the middle of nowhere. Some were even more beautiful than this, but when you’re out exploring, sometimes you need to choose between embracing a moment and recording it. After years of documenting my travels, I have mastered the art of putting the camera down and feeling zero guilt.


It may not look like much, but that portion of the road pictured on the left gave me a run for my money, both times. When you go over, you have a drop off to your left and your car points upward almost vertically for a few seconds. If you hit a skid, you probably stand a good chance of barreling down the hill. I watched someone else go over in an F-150 first and then followed their exact route. The way back was a little tricky at sunset, but I managed. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

Next week, I’ll share what it was like going boondocking for the first time — on Halloween. It didn’t quite go as planned, but more on that later.

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20 thoughts on “Exploring Nevada | Offroading in the Desert With an FJ Cruiser

  1. Looks like you had a blast roughing it up in Nevada! There’s definitely a LOT more to the state besides Las Vegas, and you seemed to explore it all! Can’t wait for more adventures from you on the west coast of the US!

    1. Thank you! Caliente is on my list for next summer. I hear the mountain biking up there is amazing.

      I’ll be sharing my Arizona adventures as soon as I’ve finished posts on the Nevada trip. ☺️

      1. Nice! I once saw a Kia offroading at Lake Mead and a little grandma was behind the wheel. 🙀

        I’m so glad you could relate to what I wrote, though. ☺️

      2. Haha, I was really proud of her out there by herself. I’m proud of all women who go adventuring alone. I think if there were more of us out here, we’d all be better off. ☺️

      3. Independence is so powerful but threatening to. I believe humans were made to have companionship. I love that she continues to really live, though.

      4. My companions are Samson and the cat! I’m an only child, so I don’t think I crave human companionship as most other people. That said, I run into some interesting people out here. I went hiking with one earlier today. You can travel solo and still have moments of socially distanced socializing ☺️

  2. That sounds really great. Nevada seems to be really worth a trip. I get real wanderlust. Oh, I love riding a fourwheeler over dusty slopes. But only if I have a map of available workshops. 😉 Thank you for a new sign of life, Alexis! Take good care of yourself and Samson! Greetings, Michael

    P.S.: A great logo, with a good claim!

    1. I would much rather tackle the dirt roads in one of those little four wheelers but they are so expensive!! Samson loves the dirt though. I rarely have to turn on the 4×4 and he has never lost traction. 🙃

      Take care of yourself too! Thank you.

      1. You are definitely a good car driver, Alexis! Think so too, cats are loving the mood. They afterwards have the change to clean up her fur, very well. Yes, could be very expensive and maybe difficult in some areas, to repair one of the axes. At least our common 4wheelers are not really made for this. You will need something like a Hummer. 😉 Enjoy your traveling, and stay save, Alexis! With best wishes, Michael

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