Hoover Dam Visit
I did some research on visiting Hoover Dam and found the information to be a bit sketchy and somewhat out of date. We searched this site (IRV2), the "official" Hoover Dam site to see what should be expected.
Today the DW and I stopped for a tour in our 38' Class A with a Jeep Wrangler JKU (4 door) toad. We were driving north on US 93 from Kingman AZ.
Here's my report.
First, our research said you needed to park an RV on the Arizona side. We looked for signs before we crossed the Colorado River, but didn't see anything about RVs, parking or the Visitors Center until after we crossed the bridge. We were concerned about what we would find if we drove to the dam in the coach so we went further north. We did pass a parking lot just pass the turn off to the visitor center across from the Hoover Dam Lodge that looked promising, but unsure of who owned, restrictions, etc, we went on a little further.
We came up on the visitor center and decided to give it a try. After turning off US 93 found the drive up to the center a little tight, so we continued onto the Bureau of Reclamation park with marina, campground and lake access. It's a fee area, but I have an annual National Parks Pass, so I got in "free" I asked the Ranger at the gate (who didn't really know much about the dam) about access. She said we could park the coach in the boat trailer storage and drive the Jeep to the dam. No problem once we found the right place to park - drive down the boat ramp almost to the lake and turn right (visions of Robin Williams watching the RV going into the lake in my mind)
So we get the Jeep unhooked and backtrack to the dam. The road is a bit tight and I was happy to be in the Jeep instead of the Dutch Star. You do have to go through a security checkpoint. We were waved through, but there was a lane for trucks / trailers / RVs that I understand get a walk through inspection. The sign that said RVs right lane was the only indication up until then that mentioned RVs.
Drive on to the visitor center and a parking garage for cars (no RVs) and a $10 fee. We kept going and went across the dam. Saw another $10 parking lot and passed that one as well. Not far down the road (or up in this case) there are 4-5 free parking areas with just a few spots suitable for RVs, and not many for a class A over 38 - 40'. Especially with a toad! We did go all the way to the end of the road to an overlook. Not a lot of space to turn around or park.
We parked the Jeep and toured the dam, did the power house tour. Saw a short film, then took an elevator about 550 feet down to the Nevada diversion tunnel, then to the powerhouse. Finally we saw an exhibit on the dam, power generation and distribution. Quite impressive (coming from a Mechanical Engineer) Well worth the $15 ticket.
We really enjoyed the tour.
If you're going in a coach or 5th wheel, I would recommend parking in the lot across from the hotel or parking at the marina and driving a toad / tow vehicle to the dam.
We were there in February which with January is the slowest month. There are very few places to park and the road across the dam is very congested.
Hope this helps anyone who is considering a visit to the dam (which we highly recommend)
2016 Roadtrek CS Adventurous
2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited