Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space

Regional Parks and Open Space is part of Washoe County's Community Services Department. Our mission is to provide exceptional parks, open space and recreational opportunities while preserving our natural, historical and cultural resources. Washoe County manages over 12,000 acres including over 10,000 acres of open space, 49 parks, an Arboretum, developed trails, trailheads, athletic fields, golf courses, a campground, a shooting facility, an archery facility, a museum, and so much more! If you have a favorite outdoor activity, chances are it can be done in a Washoe County Park! For more information, view our Park Guide.

Highlights & Current Events 

Sierra-Nevada Autumn Photo Exhibit
on display during the month of October

fall photo bartleyOctober 1-31, 2016, 8:00am-5:00pm
Western Heritage Interpretive Center
Bartley Ranch Regional Park

6000 Bartley Ranch Road

Bartley Ranch Regional Park has invited the public to submit their favorite fall-themed photographs of the Nevada and the Sierra for the 2016 Sierra-Nevada Autumn Exhibit. The beautiful photographs expressing views of autumn throughout Nevada and the Sierra will be on display in the park's Western Heritage Interpretive Center from October 1-31st, 8am-5pm daily. There is no charge to view the exhibit.

Join Washoe County Park Rangers for Fall Photo Hikes

Thomas CreekSaturday 10/15/16 @ 12pm - Mt. Rose Trail
Saturday 10/22/16 @ 2pm - Thomas Creek Trail
Saturday 10/29/16 @ 2pm - Brown's Creek Trail
Saturday 11/05/16 @ 2pm - Galena Creek Trail

Join Washoe County Park Rangers this fall as we explore some of our area's most scenic trails. Amateur photographers and hiking enthusiasts alike will have the opportunity to capture their own spectacular fall photography while enjoying the trails. Bring a sturdy pair of hiking boots, a snack, a bottle of water, and of course, your favorite camera. The hikes are medium in difficulty, and are meant to cover 3-5 miles in 2-3 hours, weather permitting. Be sure to dress in layers, and please leave pets at home. Click here for directions and more hike specifics.

To RSVP for the hikes, please call (775) 849-2511 or email Park Ranger Andy Brown. Any changes in the schedule due to weather will be posted on the Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space Facebook page. Submit your photos from the hikes and we might share them on Facebook or our website! Go here to submit your photo.

Carson Sierra Spinners and Weavers Guild Demonstrations & Historic Huffaker School Open HouseHistoric Huffaker School House

Saturdays Oct. 8, Nov. 12, and Dec. 10, 2016
Historic Huffaker School House
Bartley Ranch Regional Park
6000 Bartley Ranch Road, Reno

The Carson Sierra Spinners and Weavers Guild are a group of local craft artists that promote appreciation and knowledge of fiber arts in our community through demonstration, and encourage others to take up spinning and weaving to keep the fiber arts alive. The Historic Huffaker School will be open between 9am and 3pm for viewing of live demonstrations by the Spinners and Weavers, and for self guided tours. Park Rangers will be offering guided tours of the historic school house at 1pm. Dates include Oct. 8, Nov. 12, and Dec. 10, 2016. This is a free event.

The popular Ranching at Rancho series has returned!pony rides

Most Saturdays thru Nov. 20, 10:00am - 1:00pm
Rancho San Rafael Park - Nevada Farms & Families Area
1595 N. Sierra Street, Reno

Bring the family for a fun, free ranching themed open house in the main barn area. Each week features a new theme from goats to tractors and everything else in between. Visit with our resident chickens and turkeys, cool off inside the Discovery Room, or your little one can enjoy a horse or pony ride for only $5 with Lorie's Pony Express! Themed Ranching at Rancho activities will only be offered on most Saturdays, but the Discovery Room and pony rides are available Saturdays and Sundays between 10am-1pm most weeks. Please check this page and Facebook for notifications of cancellations.

Get ready to heat the oven and pull out the frosting, its time to register for this year's Gingerbread House Competition!

Gingerbread House*Entry forms must be received by 12/5*
9th Annual Gingerbread House Competition & Festival
Saturday, December 10, 12:00pm to 3:30pm
May Museum at Rancho San Rafael Park
1595 N. Sierra Street, Reno

The May Arboretum Society invites you to participate in the 9th Annual Gingerbread House Competition & Festival by creating your own edible house. Entries must be constructed of edible materials, and there is a $10 entrance fee. Visit the May Arboretum Society website for the official rules, details, categories, and to register. All registrations must be received by Monday, December 5th and only 100 entries will be accepted. Ribbons will be awarded for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in each category and a "People's Choice" ribbon will be awarded based on a vote of the general public in attendance at the Festival.

Programming at the Galena Creek Visitor Centergalena visitor center

Ongoing throughout the year
Galena Creek Regional Park
18250 Mt. Rose Hwy, Reno

The Galena Creek Visitor Center is a partnership between Washoe County, the U.S. Forest Service, and the Great Basin Institute. The goal of the visitor center is to encourage understanding, appreciation and appropriate use of the natural, cultural and historic resources of the Galena Canyon area and the Mount Rose Scenic Byway. Check their website often or call 775-849-4948 for a listing of upcoming events including weekly guided hikes, monthly toddler time, and special Sunday morning programming. 


Bridge Construction over Whites Creek

Attention Trail Users: During construction of a new bridge over Whites Creek, there will be a temporary trail closure along Whites Creek Trail to ensure trail user safety.  The closure is between Chartreuse Court and Mountain Ranch Road, roughly ½ mile.  Trail users will be directed to use Paris Avenue as a detour. View a map of the trail closure and detour. Construction should be completed in early winter and signs/fencing will be removed once it is safe to have the trail re-opened.  If you have questions/concerns, please contact Cheryl Surface at (775) 328-2039. Thank you for your patience. 

Updated Truckee Meadows Trails Guides are now availabletrails, washoe county, list

Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space is excited to present then new Truckee Meadows Trail Guide featuring two additional trails: Ballardini Ranch Trail system and the Sugarloaf Trail. The 66-page guide features a variety of photos taken from various trails in the area, maps and a brief synopsis describing what each trail has to offer hikers. The guides can be downloaded here, or picked up at local bike shops, visitor centers, Scheels and Cabela's as well as Washoe County, City of Reno, and City of Sparks owned buildings. For complete details, view the press release.

Betsy Caughlin Donnelley Park Pasture Restoration

Betsy Caughlin Donnelley Park is currently undergoing pasture restoration due to effects of the drought.  During this process it is necessary to restrict public access to the pastures to ensure seed germination and new growth of the pasture grasses.  We thank you for your patience and understanding. 

Please see our complete list of other parks for your on and off-leash dog needs.  Click here.

For questions, please contact Parks Staff at (775) 828-6612.

Click here for Washoe County Parks facebook page Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space is on Facebook!