Nevada : Safety by City
- Battle Mountain
- Blue Diamond
- Boulder City
- Burning Man in Black Rock City
- Carson City
- Incline Village
- Las Vegas
- Moapa Valley
- Mount Charleston
- North Las Vegas
- Virginia City
- West Wendover
Lovelock, Nevada, is yet another mining town along the Cowboy Corridor that spans I-80 across northern Nevada.
This mining town does hold one world record for a unique item found in the mines. More on that to come.
The town was named after a man but builds its reputation on the famous Lover’s Lock Plaza, where visitors can “lock in their love.”
You’ll still get plenty of that cowboy spirit in this small town of fewer than 2,000 people always between Reno and Winnemucca.
It might look like the town is surrounded by a bunch of empty spaces, but there are secrets, streams, and sensations in those mountains for those brave (and educated) enough to tackle them.
In town, you still have the 24-hour casinos that put Nevada on the map yet again after the rich mining discoveries.
From legends of 12-foot-tall giants roaming this land to real duck decoys marking the oldest in the world, there’s a lot more to Lovelock than the exit on the highway.
Warnings & Dangers in Lovelock
OVERALL RISK: LOW
There's a low risk here with crime rates that hardly register and a rustic charm that welcomes weary drives from the monotonous interstate.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW
You'll need a car to explore. There is no public transportation system here, and taxis might be found sparingly.
PICKPOCKETS RISK: LOW
This is a low risk, but you should always practice standard safety protocols like locking your car door and keeping your purse and wallet close to you and out of sight as much as possible.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: LOW
The desert can be harsh, from winter storms to blinding dust storms to bitterly cold weather to severe storms that cause flooding or fires.
MUGGING RISK: LOW
This is another low risk, with one robbery a year being the most reported for the past decade.
TERRORISM RISK: LOW
The closest potential target is Fallon Naval Air Station, about an hour away. That's where the Top Gun aviators train. The risk in Lovelock is low.
SCAMS RISK: LOW
The only scam reported here over the past few years involved someone impersonating a sheriff's deputy and demanding payments. That's not how law enforcement operates. The calls are mostly targeted at locals, so there's a low risk for you.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: LOW
There's nothing in the crime data that suggests women are a bigger crime target. Provided you know outdoor and wilderness safety, you should have a low risk here.
TAP WATER RISK: LOW
You can request a recent water quality report to be mailed to you by calling (775)851-4788. There's nothing to cause concerns about previous reports, but it's always worth double-checking.
Safest Places to Visit in Lovelock
The Travel Nevada website is the official tourism site for the state, but there’s a wealth of information about Lovelock and the Cowboy Corridor.
You can also use the CowboyCountry.com website to learn more about the cities along the interstate, including Lovelock.
The Pershing County Chamber of Commerce is another research option.
Lover’s Lock Plaza is right in the heart of town.
Green poles connect chains, where locks can be attached to forever “lock in your love.”
There’s also a park, playground, and seasonal pool around the plaza.
(NOTE: This is not the same place as Lovelock City Park.)
The Marzen House Museum is the place to learn the history of this land, from the Native Americans that once roamed to the mining industry to agricultural tools.
You can also see replicas of the famous Tule Duck Decoys found in the nearby cave.
Speaking of Lovelock Cave, you can visit there, but you’ll need to plan ahead.
The cave is 20 miles down an unpaved road with a short but somewhat challenging hike.
Once you’re there, you’ll only be able to go as far as the viewing platforms.
Kiosks along the way make the trip worth it but don’t expect a grand cave exploring experience.
It’s more about what was discovered in this cave than the depths or length of it that matters.
Lovelock Speedway is another place to get your heart pumping.
Races are posted on the Lovelock Speedway Facebook page.
This is a dirt track with stock cars and other informal races that aren’t quite as fancy as the NASCAR circuit.
If you’re driving to or from Winnemucca, don’t miss the Imlay exit, where you can visit the Safe Haven Wildlife Sanctuary or the Nevada oddity of Thunder Mountain folk art.
For those visiting the Black Rock Desert, it’s still another 2.5 hours from here, but still worth exploring if you have the time.
It’s filled with historic trails immigrants once traversed and the “playa,” a dried stretch of flat land that is known for some of the land speed record attempts.
It’s also the home to the Burning Man Festival each summer and High Rock Canyon.
Places to Avoid in Lovelock
You don’t have to worry about bad neighborhoods in Lovelock.
The real risks come with being unprepared for the desert environment.
There are places on the road where you might need to remove air from your tires but refill them before you hit the main road again.
Mobile service will be limited, so you’ll need to know how to use GPS.
Winter weather here can be intense, and on the backroads, the actual road can seem to disappear between the blankets of snow.
The winds are relentless, and wind burn is quite common.
The casinos are open 24 hours a day, but you have to be 21 to gamble and drink.
Kids aren’t allowed on the casino floor, even with an adult.
Avoid going into wilderness areas without knowing when hunting season is underway, as you’ll want to wear Hunter Orange to avoid being mistaken for an animal.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Lovelock
- Lovelock Police Department serves the city, but the Pershing County Sheriff’s Office takes over the unincorporated areas. The Nevada Highway Patrol will oversee any activity on the interstate or other state roads. Calling 911 will still get you to the right place if you have mobile service.
- The Pershing County Sheriff’s Office has a mobile app with safety information and a form to report criminal activity. You can also get information about what to do if you have a car accident.
- Pershing County offers emergency alerts through a program called AlertSense, which you can download from the app stores. These alerts will include severe weather, major road closures, shelter-in-place orders, and other emergency situations.
- Nevada 511 is the website and app of the Department of Transportation. It helps with highway conditions, road delays, construction projects, and live cameras of major roads.
- The Nevada Department of Wildlife issues fishing and hunting licenses. Anyone who wants to take part in those activities is required to have a license. Please review the requirements ahead of time in case there’s any safety training you need to do.
- If there’s a dust storm warning while you’re driving or about to hit the road, just stay put. I urge you to look up Nevada Dust Storm on YouTube to see how vicious these storms can be. It’s like a blizzard of dust, and you can’t see much in front of you. If there’s any dust blowing, turn your ventilation system to only circulate air in the car and not bring in the dust from outside.
- Respect the semi-trucks on the road in this region. The interstate is very straight but does have inclines. Semi-trucks can’t speed up and slow down like vehicles. Tailgating, honking, or speeding around is only going to make the situation more dangerous for everyone.
- Traveling the backroad byways of northern Nevada is a great experience, but it comes with extra preparations. Your car can get stuck in sand piles. Would you know how to get it moving again? The BLM and Nevada tourism site offers great information about driving the dusty backroads, and we encourage all adventurers to read the “Dirt Road Code.”
- Temperatures can take wide swings here in a day, going from shorts and t-shirt weather to winter temperatures. Always keep extra layers of clothing with you in the car.
- Public land doesn’t mean you can take anything you find. Look at the BLM’s “Can I Keep This?” section to find out what you can leave and what you should leave behind. Do not pick wildflowers if you happen to be there during the bloom. (DO YOU KNOW HOW HARD IT IS FOR FLOWERS TO GROW IN A DESERT?) But seriously, it’s illegal on most public lands.
So... How Safe Is Lovelock Really?
Most searches for crime in Lovelock revolve around issues at the prison nearby, specifically focused on the time O.J. Simpson spent there for a heist in Las Vegas.
Between Pershing County Sheriff’s Office and Lovelock Police Department, it’s hard to get a grasp on the most recent numbers.
Data goes back to either 2021 or 2020, and it’s not really clear if that’s the whole snapshot of criminal activity.
If so, then Lovelock has crime data in key categories that can be counted on two hands.
Pershing County is so rural that it’s unlikely the crime data would veer too far from the norm, especially with the bulk of citations and arrests made during the annual Burning Man festival near the Black Rock Desert.
Rural areas in Nevada face a nationwide problem of illegal drug activity, but there’s no risk if you avoid that scene altogether.
Quite frankly, I’d be more worried about getting lost in the desert or dealing with a winter storm and getting stuck than being a victim of crime here.
For most travelers, Lovelock is a moment in time for gas, an overnight rest, or a meal on the road.
Here’s hoping this gives you a reason to stick around this lovely town of Lovelock a little longer.
How Does Lovelock Compare?
|New York City||67|
|Buenos Aires (Argentina)||60|
Passports with a U.S. Visa are required to get into the country for international travelers. If you are from a country that is eligible for a waiver or don't need to do the visa interview, that's ideal. Those waiting for interviews could be in a queue for up to six months or more.
The U.S. Dollar is the only currency accepted here. While credit cards are widely used, you'll need cash if you plan to play the slots or gamble at the tables. Casinos will exchange currency but will add hefty fines. Even if you're just using an ATM, try to do so outside the casino, where the ATM fees will lower.
Lovelock gets four seasons, and winters can hit or miss, but bring cold-weather clothes just in case. If you're heading outdoors, the dust here can embed in clothing, so waterproof clothing is helpful to keep the dust from settling in. You'll need hiking boots for the mountains and comfortable shoes in the town. Don't forget sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to protect yourself from the high desert sun.
Lovelock is about 90 minutes from Reno Tahoe International Airport, which is the closest and best option.
Travel insurance is helpful for flights and road travel. During the extreme summer heat, flights can have trouble taking off or landing. Winter storms can shut down interstates and airports. It's just smart to protect yourself from all the risks so that you can enjoy the rewards.
Lovelock Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
|Temperature / Month||Jan||Feb||Mar||Apr||May||Jun||Jul||Aug||Sep||Oct||Nov||Dec|
Nevada - Safety by City
|Burning Man in Black Rock City||70|
|North Las Vegas||54|