Blue Point Spring

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This page last updated on 01/05/2018
(Fig. 01)
Location Blue Point Spring is located east of Las Vegas on the north side of Lake Mead near Echo Bay. The easiest way to get there from downtown Las Vegas is to drive north on Interstate-15 for about 2 miles to Lake Mead Blvd. Exit the Interstate, turn right onto Lake Mead Blvd, and drive east out of town, over the mountains, and down to the lake. About 1.8 miles past the Lake Mead entrance station, turn left at the T-intersection onto Northshore Road, and drive east for about 45 minutes to the paved Blue Point Spring parking area, which is on the left (northwest) side of the road a few minutes north of the Rogers Spring site. The parking area and palm trees can be seen from the road.

Description:  Blue Point Spring is a natural warm spring within Lake Mead National Recreation Area. In the past there have been soaking opportunities at this spring; however, the spring and the creek below it are all now overgrown. Blue Point emerges from the ground at a temperature in the upper 80s. A use-trail leads along the creek to the spring (Fig. 02), as does an old road, and there are a few short use-trails around the palms, but the area is not developed for hiking. It is possible to follow the foliage and walk just under a half-mile to the side of a mountain (Fig 03), the source of the spring, where you can see it bubbling up through silken sand. The source of Blue Point's water is still uncertain, but some think that it travels in underground aquifers from the mountains near Ely, Nevada, located 250 miles to the north. In 1903, farmers near the town of St. Thomas—presently a ghost town with its own unique story—began to construct irrigation canals from Blue Point and Rogers Spring. They used shovels, homemade tools, and a horse team to scrape and dig the canals, but they soon found that the water from the spring only traveled a short distance before soaking into the packed canal dirt. They lined the canals with homemade clay, which also failed. The men borrowed money and spent several months to layer the canals with cement. Ultimately, the entire project failed. Today, the green riparian vegetation in this sparsely-vegetated section of the Mojave Desert attracts desert birds year-round and migrants during spring and fall.

(Fig. 02)
(Fig. 03)
12/08/2017 Trip Notes: After eating our picnic lunch I wandered into the heavily overgrown area of tall reeds surrounding a clump of palm trees. I eventually found a small area where the waters from the spring found their way to the surface (Fig. 04). It was amazing how quickly the water was flowing through this area (Fig. 05). After walking out 3/4 of the way to the end we did find another small spot where the water reached the surface. Other than these two, the whole distance of the canal contains no visible water. On a subsequent visit, Bob visited this area again with some friends and this time hiked all the way to the end of the trail and found where the water from the spring was "bubbling up" in the sand (Fig. 06).

(Fig. 04)
(Fig. 05)
(Fig. 06) Bob's picture

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