Humboldt County is the oldest county in Nevada, described in Thompson and West's book "History of Nevada" as having “alkali plains, covered in part with scattering sage-brush, with now and then a tuft of bunch-grass.” Bordering Oregon and near California and Idaho, today the Humboldt high desert is mostly characterized by flat valleys and abrupt mountain elevations, with views to wildflower, sagebrush, meadows and even sand dunes. This geographic backdrop and history in the west lends Humboldt County to being part self-reliant and part community-driven.
In Humboldt County, summer days are hot, and at night the temperature drops. In the winter, lows average around 16 F. The county averages 18 inches of snow. While the county was originally named for the Humboldt River, it is currently made up of less than 0.1% water. Apart from census-designated places in the county, such as Paradise Valley or Fort McDermitt, Winnemucca is the county’s sole incorporated city. This city, partly due to its rich history, supports activity that makes it the chief outsourcing center in Humboldt County. For example, Amtrak, with its California Zephyr, provides daily service in Winnemucca toward both San Francisco and Chicago. Winnemucca also houses the headquarters of the Winnemucca Indian colony of Nevada, which is a federally recognized tribe of both Western Shoshone and Northern Paiute Indians.
As the county seat, Winnemucca, together with its surrounding area, is a very involved community. Annual events are hosted that draw people from across the country. The Annual Basque Festival celebrates the region’s very prominent Basque culture, which both historically and to this day plays a huge role in the county’s leadership and industry. The Run-A-Mucca Motorcycle Rally and the Winnemucca Wheels Car Show celebrate all things automotive, with concerts, vendors, a parade, the Ranch Hand Rodeo and more.