State Route 375 (SR 375) is a state highway in south-central Nevada in the United States. The highway stretches 98 miles (158 km) from State Route 318 at Crystal Springs northwest to U.S. Route 6 (US 6) at Warm Springs. The route travels through mostly unoccupied desert terrain, with much of its alignment paralleling the northern edges of the Nellis Air Force Range. The road originally traversed through what is now the northern reaches of the air force range in the 1930s, when it was previously designated State Route 25A and later part of State Route 25.
- Main: Area 51
The top-secret Area 51 government base is near SR 375, and many travelers have reported UFO observations and other strange alien activity along this road. Such stories prompted the state to officially designate the route as the Extraterrestrial Highway in 1996. The small town of Rachel, located near the midpoint of the highway, caters to tourists, geocachers, and UFO seekers with alien-themed businesses. Although the area receives some tourism due to alleged extraterrestrial activity, SR 375 remains a lightly traveled route.
In 1989, Bob Lazar claimed to have seen alien spaceships and to have viewed saucer test flights in Tikaboo Valley. He told his story to a Las Vegas television station which was subsequently broadcast as an exclusive report. By the 1990s, stories of the top-secret U.S. government base at Area 51 had become mainstream, and many books and personal accounts had been published regarding extraterrestrial spacecraft and alien activity in the region surrounding Groom Lake. Rachel, being the closest settlement to the restricted facility, attracted people in search of UFOs and alien life. To capitalize on the purported paranormal activity along the route, the Nevada Commission on Tourism sought to rename the highway. State officials drew inspiration from the alien legends and dubbed SR 375 the Extraterrestrial Highway in February 1996. The tourism commission hoped that the renaming would "draw travelers to the austere and remote reaches of south-central Nevada, where old atomic bomb test sites, secret Defense Department airstrips and huge, sequestered tracts of military land create a marketable mystique".
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 Wikipedia, Nevada State Route 375
- ↑ Powers, Ashley (August 21, 2008). "In the Nevada Desert, There's Something Out There—The Black Mailbox". Los Angeles Times. http://articles.latimes.com/2008/aug/21/nation/na-mailbox21. Retrieved August 21, 2009.
- ↑ Moreno, Richard (2000). Roadside History of Nevada. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press Publishing Company. pp. 91–92. ISBN 0-87842-410-5.
- ↑ "Tourism Commission Has Really Gone Far Out There". Las Vegas Sun. July 5, 1996. http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/1996/jul/05/tourism-commission-has-really-gone-far-out-there/. Retrieved January 13, 2009.
- ↑ Regenold, Stephen (April 13, 2007). "Lonesome Highway to Another World?". The New York Times. http://travel.nytimes.com/2007/04/13/travel/escapes/13extraterrestrial.html?ex=1334116800&en=166686097a86d459&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss. Retrieved January 13, 2009.