Can you tell a ruby from a garnet? I can't, and neither could early settlers who inhabited this sweeping valley in Northeastern Nevada. This case of misidentification was responsible for the places now called Ruby Valley, Ruby Mountains, and Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge.
More than 200 springs feed Ruby Lake's 37,632 acres, supplemented by snowmelt from the mountains bordering the refuge. The marshes are host to nesting sandhill cranes, trumpeter swans, and white-faced ibis, egrets and herons. Songbirds inhabit the brushy areas around the springs, and raptors patrol the marshes and upland meadows in search of a meal. The refuge serves both the Pacific and the Central migration corridors and thousands of ducks fly through during spring and fall.
Dikes around the marshes support monster trout from the state run fish hatchery.
|Tim fly-fishes the dikes around the marsh.|
|A Yellow-headed Blackbird sings from the reeds.|
|A Great Blue Heron, hoping to catch a fish.|
|White-faced Ibis stroll the marsh.|
The red stones found here were actually garnets and some of them still exist in the area. If you go in search of the precious stones be aware that most of them are only a few millimeters in diameter. But whether you're seeking garnets—or just one of the loveliest spots in North America—don't miss this gem of a place.
|South Ruby Campground, nestled at the base of the|
Ruby Mountains, is the perfect base camp for exploration
of the surrounding area.