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Genoa, Nevada

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After you drop down from the mountains surrounding Lake Tahoe, you have the chance to visit Nevada’s first town, Genoa. There isn’t a lot to Genoa–just a few businesses and homes, centered around the main road through town.  But, Genoa’s importance doesn’t come from what it is today, but rather, the fact that it’s been around for quite some time.

After you’ve descended the Kingsbury Grade on Nevada Rte. 207, you can either continue to Rte. 88, then US 395, for the quick drive into Carson City.  However, a slower paced drive takes you through Genoa: Turn on Rte. 206 (Foothill Road), following it through Genoa to the outskirts of Carson City.

While Genoa is considered Nevada’s first settlement, the title comes with a technicality.  Back in 1851 when the town was settled, Nevada didn’t exist.  Back then, all of what’s now Nevada was part of Utah Territory.

Perhaps the most noteworthy structure in town is the Genoa Bar, “Nevada’s Oldest Thirst Parlor”, in operation since 1863 (at which time it was known as Livingston’s Exchange).  It’s still welcoming visitors, 7 days a week.

I didn’t find an antique store in the back.  But, there is a nice antique shop next door.  It’s so packed that you can barely walk the aisles, and if someone else is in there, you’ll need to let them out, before you can go all the way in.  Now, that’s my kind of antique store!

If you want to delve deeper into the history of Genoa, spend some time at Mormon Station State Park, located on one corner of the town’s only big intersection.  Mormon Station State Park is a recreation of the original fort built here by Mormon settlers back in 1851. 

As you head out of town, Rte. 206 is lined with farmland, that’s apparently being quickly overtaken with Carson City subdivisions.  I struggled to find a place to take a picture of the farmland, that didn’t have a newly-constructed house in the way.

Rte. 206 dead-ends at US 395, which will take you the rest of the way into Carson City.

Note: This trip was first published in 2007.

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