Lovelock Cave, Nevada

I was on the shoulder of an entrance ramp to Interstate 80 trying to pick the next destination. The risk of stalling out on indecision was high. I'd thought of eating the extra hours and spending the night in Black Rock under the full moon. But I'm not as sentimental about that place as other festival goers, plus it was supposed to be cloudy all night. 

Scrolling around OnX it highlighted Lovelock Cave. It was on BLM land, at the end of a long dead end dirt road, and satellite images showed it to have a toilet. Good enough. Target acquired. Let's go. 

Pulling off I80 through the town of Lovelock and angling towards a mountain range on the paved and signed "Lovelock Cave Byway," it seemed like maybe this was a bigger destination than I thought. But the miles and minutes kept clicking by, the paved road became a wide gravel road became a narrow winding gravel road. 

Is it simply that there is so little to do in Nevada, and that the basins and ranges all become so similar, that significant attention is placed on the rare anomaly? This place seems highly trafficked, but by whom? A log book in the cave was completely filled and pushed the latest entries, just days prior, to using the cover to record their visit. Visitors from all over (the latest were from Bustamante, a small town in northern Mexico I had randomly been to decades ago). 

A nature trail with accompanying brochure and numbered stations surrounds the outcropping containing the cave, inside which a large and spacious deck has been constructed to keep your feet clean. Who built all this? Put together the brochure? And how many other random little spectacles like this are hidden in this state, an hour from the nearest main road?

I parked for the night on a ridge overlooking the basin to the north with the cave to my back. The only signs of any human existence the occasional semitruck on I80, ten miles as the crow flies across Humboldt Lake.