Silver State Sights: Fort Churchill

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SILVER SPRINGS, Nev. (KOLO) A century and a half of harsh Nevada elements has taken its toll on the adobe buildings, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still go visit.

“Fort Churchill is really a short drive from Reno and Carson City,” said Bethany Drysdale of Travel Nevada. “It’s one of those really iconic places that tells the story of the Pony Express and wagon trains and settling the western US.”

Located just under for an hour from Reno off of US-95 alternate on the way to Yerington, Fort Churchill is still a popular tourist destination.

“I just like the history of it,” said Karen Pabon of Dayton, who visited the park with a group. “The history shows in the museum of what these ruins were and what they stand for.”

The museum is close to the ruins of the fort, and it shows the way it looked when it was built in the early 1860s.

The fort was initially built to provide protection for early settlers and Pony Express riders who rode through the area, but eventually became a supply depot for the Union Army during the Civil War.

You can also camp at Fort Churchill, along the Carson River.

“Fort Churchill has 20 campsites,” said Drysdale. “Camping is only $15 a night. They also do guided hikes, which are really cool to get out in the moonlight and photograph Fort Churchill.”

In 1957, the fort became a part of Nevada’s state park system. Four years later it was declared a national historic landmark, and in 1966, was added to the National Register of Historic Places.