Walker Lake is getting a bit of attention these days. The Reno paper reports that
A new [$1,000,000] federally-funded ad campaign that touts Walker Lake as an unpolished, historic and under utilized resort destination has some people in nearby Hawthorne excited about possible revitalization efforts.
Don was telling me the Paiute Indians had a myth about a giant serpent in the lake. His high school mascot was the Mina Serpent named after this legend. It seems that one purpose of the legend was to keep the kids out of the lake so they wouldn’t do so many of the stupid things kids often do around water.
Reports of sea serpents in Walker Lake have been around probably as long as the lake has been inhabited. The Walker River Paiute Tribe has a legend handed down by the “Older People” that there were two sea serpents living in the lake who were once human beings, a male and a female. Children were told not to talk lightly or make fun of them. [history and geology of Walker Lake]
see also Banking on the future of a little lake -|- map -|- serpent sighting report -|- Walker Lake Interpretive Association Articles of Interest -|- The Loon Festival page has good contact information for camping -|- The BLM runs the campgrounds on the west side of the lake -|- public lands description -|- and don’t forget the Walker Lake photo gallery!
UPDATE from Don
The Hawthorne basketball and track teams were called the “Serpents” and the name was derived from the Paiute lore, but our mascot was the “Walker Lake Serpent.” I’m actually the only snake I know of from Mina. I don’t think there ever was a Mina serpent. :-)
We didn’t have a football team before WWII because there just weren’t enough students big enough to make up a football team. Student body was around 42, for all four year grades from freshman to senior, while I was there. Graduating class was 12. (the one I was in) Us Mina kids (about 18 or 20) rode the school bus from Mina (33 miles) to help make up the student body of 42.