Home Page of Exploring Nevada
Custom Search


Great Basin Wildflowers
With 350 stunning color images and descriptive text, Laird Blackwell reveals the diversity and beauty of the Great Basin through its wildflowers.    

See More Books About Nevada

The Success Loop Scenic Drive

The Schell Creek Range
[Photo Use Policy]

The Success Loop Scenic Drive in Eastern Nevada, near Ely, is a wonderful 38-mile drive that few people outside of the local area ever bother to take, let alone know about. This scenic drive provides excellent views throughout its entire length and offers many opportunities to explore on side roads that lead off toward the Schell Creek Range. Additionally, this drive goes right past the scenic Cave Lake State Park.

The Success Loop begins 5 miles north of the town of McGill, and then passes through, on a paved road that is in good condition, a beautiful valley. The mountains of the Schell Creek Range provide a wonderfully scenic backdrop to the east on this part of the drive. Additionally, numerous side roads lead off from the scenic drive and head toward the mountains and two designated campgrounds that are located at the base of the Schell Creek Range.

After about 15 miles, the road turns to gravel and begins a moderately steep ascent up to a pass called Success Summit. On the ascent up to the pass, the traveler goes through groves of aspen trees and has excellent views of the valley below and the Schell Creek Range in the distance.

Success Summit
[Photo Use Policy]

Once the road reaches Success Summit, the traveler has excellent views of the Schell Creek Range and the nearby Steptoe Valley. The road then descends rather steeply for a few miles down from the pass, before leveling out as it follows Steptoe Creek. The road converts back to a paved road as it passes by Cave Lake State Park. The highlight of Cave Lake State Park is Cave Lake itself. This lake, which is surprisingly large, has good fishing in a very scenic setting.

Five miles beyond Cave Lake State Park, the scenic drive ends at the junction of Highway 93, seven miles to the south of Ely.

Traffic on the Success Loop Scenic Drive is light. Most traffic encountered will be on the five-mile stretch of road between US Highway 93 and Cave Lake State Park.

The paved portion of the Success Loop road is open all year. However, during the winter, the upper-elevations of the road that crosses Success Summit is closed.

Overall, anyone who happens to be visiting or passing through Ely should make a point of taking the Success Loop Scenic Drive. The drive is very scenic, easy to take and will only take a few hours to complete.

Quick Facts About the Success Loop Scenic Drive

  • Trip Length : 38 miles, one-way.
  • Road Type - The road is paved for the lower elevations of the drive. The road is gravel as it crossess Success Summit. Note, during the winter months the upper-elevations of the road that crosses Success Summit is closed.
  • RV's / Campers? - Yes.
  • Services Available - Gas and supplies can be found in Ely and McGill.
  • General Location - The road begins north of McGill off of US Highway 93 and ends to the south of Ely on US Highway 93.
  • Camping - For much of the drives length, the road passes through BLM and National Forest lands. Many developed camp sites are available in the National Forest lands. And primitive camping is allowed virtually anywhere. Additionally, there is developed camping in Cave Lake State Park.

Photos of the Success Loop Scenic Drive

Aspen Trees on the Drive River Crossing on a Side Road Elk On the Road

More Photographs of the Success Loop Scenic Drive

Map of the Success Loop & Nearby Scenic Drives

Suggested Books

Benchmark Nevada Road & Recreation Atlas : This topographic map book shows ALL roads in Nevada. This book is a mandatory requirement if you'll be venturing off the main highways shown on the tourist map. Additionally, this book shows many historical sites, points of interest and recreation areas.

More Info at Amazon

Where to Stay When Driving the Success Loop Scenic Drive

There is plenty of developed camping in the mountains. Primitive camping is also available in all BLM and National Forest lands. Additionally, Cave Lake State Park provides many developed camp and RV sites, too. However, if you want to stay in a hotel, there is plenty of rooms available in Ely.

Lodging in Ely
Copyright © 2007 - 2017 Exploring Nevada.Com
Nevada Web Cams Nevada Scenic Drives