Franklin Lake WMA

Franklin Lake is boasts the potential for many different species of wildlife. The wetland area is the last remnant of a large lake leftover from when the glaciers covering Ruby Valley melted.

About five miles north of the Ruby Lake National Wildlife Refuge is Franklin Lake Wildlife Management Area. Franklin Lake WMA is just a small remaining portion of the pluvial Lake Franklin that covered most of the Ruby Valley during the last glacial cycle. This is a seasonal wetland, with the most water expected during spring snowmelt. Wildlife usage varies from year to year depending on water availability and drought conditions. In wet years, a wide variety of birds will breed and forage in the marshy areas of the WMA. Spring and fall migrations bring heavy traffic from birds of both the Pacific and Central flyways. Keep your binoculars at the ready, as there is an abundance of diversity to observe in waterfowl, shorebirds, raptors and songbirds. For those interested in big game, look for mule deer and pronghorn antelope grazing the surrounding flats and shrublands. Hunting is permitted for wildlife species upon which there is an established open season.

Franklin Lake WMA
Type of destination
Nevada Department of Wildlife - Wildlife Management Area
Adventure Rating


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  • Pets Ok

Special Notes and Resources

Camping: Not permitted Use of Campfires: Not permitted There is very limited cellular service and limited amenities in the area. The nearest gas station is about 55-75 miles away depending on the season, road conditions, and weather.