The Hoover Dam and Lake Mead area of Nevada is a very popular Las Vegas side trip. Two to three thousand people visit daily to see the architectural wonder of the dam and experience nature at the Lake Mead National Recreation area.
Hoover Dam is a massive curved wall 660 feet thick at the bottom and 45 feet at the top. It towers 726 feet above bedrock and holds 9.2 trillion gallons of water in Lake Mead.
The Hoover Dam was a significant achievement of its time and accomplished two main goals; it stopped extensive flooding in the spring and summer months, and did away with the dry, rough terrain that lacked irrigation the rest of the year.
It took 6 1/2 years to fill Lake Mead, which is named after Elwood Mead who oversaw the dam’s construction.
Mead Lake and Hoover Dam now provide not only function but recreation. Enjoy boating, camping, lake cruises, fishing and hiking in the Lake Mead National Recreation Area.
Lake Mead and Hoover Dam are known for mild winters and hot summers. The area generally gets less that five inches of rainfall annually.
The Lake Mead National Recreation area is a stark contrast of desert and water, mountains and canyons. The water of the dam flows through one of the hottest, driest regions on the planet to create Lake Mead.