"The northernmost peak of the McCullough Range, Black Mountain, looms 5100 feet over a geologically typical Nevada basin 3000 feet below. The mountain has been popular for a long time: it’s graced with 318 prehistoric rock art panels showing some 1700 individual petroglyphs. Recently it became part of the 48,000-acre Sloan Canyon National Conservation area; a little less recently the basin below became the fastest growing city in the United States. Most recently, since 2008 and the worst American economic downturn since the Great Depression, Las Vegas has suffered the highest unemployment and home foreclosure rate in the nation. Emptied of people, it has frozen at exactly the point where its aspirational excesses were most baroque and unfettered. Las Vegas is the epicenter of a classically American strain of boom and bust capitalism. Historically the Silver State has always veered between the excess and collapse of the extractive mining industry, but air-conditioning, proximity to California, and the retirement lifestyle have brought another economy to Nevada that operates on the same maniacal principles: the habitation industry. In terms of their physical effect on the land, the extraction and habitation economies are two sides of the same coin."