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Birding Around Devil's Hole
Birding Around Las Vegas, Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge
Birding Around Devils Hole
Birding Around Devils Hole
Devil's Hole parking (view west)

Description

Devil's Hole is a deep hole in the ground on the side of a dry, rocky hill sparsely vegetated with creosote bush, white bursage, and few other plants. The spring in the bottom of the hole has no outflow stream. Desert birds come in for water, and the pool serves as the only habitat for the Devil's Hole Pupfish (Cyprinodon diabolis).

Devil's Hole, itself, is closed to the public, but there is a catwalk enclosed in a wire cage where birders can walk out and look down into the pit. With binoculars or a spotting scope, look for pupfish and the birds that come to drink.

devil's hole
Start of the trail (view west)

Location

Devil's Hole is located on the Ash Meadows National Wildlife, about 2 hours northwest of Las Vegas.

From Las Vegas, drive out to Ash Meadows Visitor Center. From the Visitor Center (Table 1, Site 1588), drive east on Spring Meadows Road to a T-intersection with Ash Meadows Road about 2.3 miles out. At the T-intersection, continue straight onto Devils Hole Road and follow the road for another 1.3 miles as it curves back to the north. When the road starts up into a little valley, watch for a chain-link fence capped with razor-wire on a hillside to the left (west) of the road.

Birding Around Devils Hole Park along the main road (Site 0694) and walk up the old access road (about 0.2 miles) to the old parking area adjacent to the fence (Site 0695). The fence entirely encircles Devil's Hole, but there is a catwalk and viewing area on the south side of the fenced area.
Birding Around Devils Hole
Devil's Hole: where the humans are in the cage and wildlife runs free (view west)

Hours

The refuge is day-use only: open sunrise to sunset.

Fees

None.

Birding Around Devils Hole

Specialties

Devil's Hole is not the best place to bird, but you can find hard-core desert species here. The thing to see here is the Devil's Hole pupfish. This Pleistocene relict lives only in this little hole in the ground and nowhere else on earth. This fish has the smallest geographic range of any vertebrate.

Devils Hole
A bit of water in the bottom of a pit (view north)
Devil's Hole
Cage to keep humans away from the wildlife
Devil's Hole Devil's Hole
Devil's Hole Devil's Hole
Devil's Hole Devil's Hole
Devil's Hole
Trail running north along outside of fence
Devil's Hole
Metal structure covering entrance to bat cave
Devil's Hole
Widely spaced bars allow bats to pass freely, but keep humans out
Devil's Hole
One of two entrances to the bat cave
Devil's Hole
Second entrance to the bat cave
Devil's Hole
Trailhead and access road (view SE from bat cave)
Devil's Hole
Front water and shelf
Devil's Hole
Back water
Devil's Hole
Instruments
Devil's Hole
Deep water and instruments
Devil's Hole
Shallow water shelf
Devil's Hole
Shallow water shelf

Table 1. GPS Coordinates for Highway Locations (NAD27; UTM Zone 11S). Download Highway GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Site # Location Latitude (°N) Longitude (°W) UTM Easting UTM Northing Elevation (feet) Verified
0694 Devil's Hole parking area 36.4246 116.2881 563818 4031081 2404 Yes
0695 Devil's Hole spring 36.4254 116.2905 563600 4031167 2418 Yes
1588 Ash Meadows Visitor Center 36.42323 116.32703 560329 4030901 2,188 Yes

Happy birding! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 150709

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