Nevada's capital, Carson City is located along the eastern front of the Sierra Nevada, in the Eagle Valley, just east of Lake Tahoe, south of Reno, and north of Douglas County and the Carson Valley communities of Minden, Gardnerville, and Genoa. The Carson River flows through the southeast corner of the city. With a population approaching 65,000, Carson City is a picturesque, evolving destination with central access to the outdoors as well as larger and smaller communities nearby.
From the beginning, Carson City was intended to be Nevada's capital. Its cause was advanced by local fraternal orders and businessmen, chief among them Abraham Curry, who bankrolled and oversaw many of Carson City's early developments. Carson City was once home to an outlet of the US Mint. The collectible "CC" Carson City coins were produced here from 1870-1893.
With several hidden surprises for the history buff, Carson City is a pleasant daytrip from nearby Reno and Lake Tahoe.
|Daily highs (°F)||45||50||57||63||71||81||90||88||80||68||54||45|
|Nightly lows (°F)||22||25||30||34||41||47||52||51||43||35||27||22|
Data from NOAA (1981-2010)
The nearest international airport to Carson City is Reno-Tahoe International, 30 miles away via highway 395. Carson City has a small regional airport with no scheduled regular service via major airlines.
Carson City can be accessed via US Highway 50 from the east and west, and US Highway 395 from the north and south.
Highway 395 from Reno comes into Carson City just south of Washoe Lake. As of November, 2007, the divided freeway ends at the junction with Highway 50.
Highway 395 from Bishop comes into Carson City approximately 30 miles north of the Nevada/California border.
Highway 50 from Sacramento and Lake Tahoe comes into Carson City via Spooner Summit.
From the East
Highway 50 from Fallon, Austin, Eureka, and Ely comes into Carson City just west of Mound House.
Carson City is served weekday mornings and afternoons via Washoe County RTC's commuter express bus service RTC Intercity.
Carson City's transit service is called JAC (for Jump Around Carson). Regular scheduled service operates 6 days a week hourly on 3 routes. RTC Intercity shares a few stops with JAC. JAC connects to Douglas County's transit service, DART. The route setup and schedule frequency of the various bus transit services operating in and around Carson City contribute to a strong recommendation against using public transit as your primary means of getting around in the Carson City area.
The US 395 Carson City Freeway is underway and currently terminates at the junction with US-50. In coming years this freeway, to be known as Interstate 580 Nevada, will run all the way through Carson City connecting to US-50 and the road to Lake Tahoe at the south end of town. Until then...
Carson Street, which is also US 395 business, runs north-south through the city. It is supplemented by Stewart Street, Roop Street, and Saliman Rd providing north-south connectivity through Carson City.
Williams Street is also US-50 as it heads east through Carson City. Highway 50 (as it is mostly referred to locally) is joined by 5th Street to the south and College Parkway on the north carrying traffic eastward and westward to and from Carson Street. The west side of Carson Street is actually known as Carson City's "West Side" and is served mainly by small neighborhood streets.
Downtown Carson City and the West Side are all easily explored on foot. The Kit Carson Trail, a route of blue lines and bronze medallions on the sidewalk, guides the visitor past a variety of historic and cultural attractions.
- Nevada State Capitol Complex, Carson St and 5th St.
- Nevada State Museum (housed in the old Carson City mint), 600 N Carson St. (Hwy. 395) Carson City corner of Robinson Street.
- Brewery Arts Center, 449 W King St.
- Nevada Governor's Mansion, 606 N Mountain St.
- Nevada State Railroad Museum, 2180 S Carson St (U.S. Highway 395). At Fairview Drive, near the south end of Carson City
Carson City is the only Nevada city purchasing open space with a dedicated tax source. Those open spaces are in the process of coming online, however outdoor activity is still available in abundance in the area.
- Silver Oak Golf Club, 1251 Country Club Dr, ☎ +1 775-841-7000. Exciting golf course located in the hills surrounding Lake Tahoe.
- Mills Park (Highway 50 & Roop Street). Summer kiddie train, events pavilion
- Fuji Park (South Carson Street and Clear Creek Road, near the Douglas County Line). Playground, stream
Carson City is not known for its shopping. You should be able to find any general merchandise you require along Carson Street or Highway 50. Downtown Carson City just near the capitol complex features a variety of small shops. At the south end of downtown, Carson Mall is currently in the planning phases for a coming remodel.
- El Charro Avitia, 4389 S. Carson St. Very good Mexican food.
- Q's Barbecue, 230 Fairview Dr (at South Carson Street). Western-style barbecue cuisine.
- Bollywood, 2329 N Carson St. Indian cuisine.
- Cracker Box, 402 E William St. American Breakfast open til 2PM
- City Cafe Bakery, 701 S Carson St. Sandwiches & espresso cafe.
- Adele's, 1112 North Carson St. A local institution of fine dining and a place to be seen
- San Rafael Coffee Company (Coffee, Espresso Drinks, Pastries), 711 South Carson Street #3 (Main Street and 8th), ☎ +1 775 461-3113. 6AM-6PM. Serves hand roasted coffee, espresso drinks and pastries.
- The Firkin and Fox, 310 South Carson St (Southern end of town), ☎ +1 775-883-1369. 9AM-12PM. Old English-style pub specializing in High Sierra Brewing Company beer. Mid Level Pricing.
- Comma Coffee, 312 S Carson St, ☎ +1 775 883-2662. Coffee shop that has a unique atmosphere with knickknacks, books, and artwork everywhere in a historic building with courtyard. Live music, jam sessions, and a monthly open mic. They serve breakfast, soups, sandwiches, organic coffee, Italian and French sodas.
- Best Western Carson Station Hotel/Casino, 900 S Carson St, ☎ +1 775 883-0900, toll-free: +1-800-501-2929, fax: +1 775 882-7569.
- Best Western Pinon Plaza Resort, 2171 US Highway 50 E, ☎ +1 775 885-9000, toll-free: +1 877 519-5567, fax: +1 775 888-8003.
- Hardman House Inn & Suites, 917 North Carson St (downtown, north of the State House), ☎ +1 775 882-7744, fax: +1 775-887-0321. Check-out: 11AM. Clean, friendly, and reasonably priced, this hotel in the downtown is a bit more expensive than its immediate neighbors, but is in excellent condition and offers amenities such as free wireless internet, continental breakfast, cookies and wine (!) at reception, and covered parking.
- Lake Tahoe. Just over Spooner Summit at the south end of town, via Highway 50 West (completely different road than the popular "Highway 50" Williams Street), is Lake Tahoe. Carson City is a direct route to South Lake Tahoe and the Stateline casino area, as well as Heavenly ski area and the rest of what Lake Tahoe has to offer.
- Nevada Outback. The other way on Highway 50 East, Williams Street, you find the Nevada outback. This region of basins and ranges is perhaps best explored via Highway 50. Overnight trips work best for anything beyond Sand Mountain, which lies outside Fallon. Other things to see along the Highway 50 corridor include Fort Churchill State Park, Lahontan Reservoir, and the historic diametric opposite central Nevada mining towns of Austin and Eureka.
- Carson Valley. South along 395, the Carson Valley is home to Genoa, Nevada's oldest settlement (established as Mormon Station in 1851), as well as the towns of Minden and Gardnerville. Gardnerville is home to some Basque food and downtown Minden is quaint and picturesque. Kingsbury Grade climbs the Sierra west of Carson Valley to Lake Tahoe, and is the Nevada side entrance to Heavenly Ski Resort.
|Routes through Carson City|
|Sacramento ← Stateline ←||W E||→ Silver Springs → Ely|
|Alturas ← Reno ←||N S||→ Minden → Bishop|