Red Rock Hikes – pick three, beginner/intermediate/advanced
Vegas is more than night clubs, casinos and pool parties, there are amazing outdoor activities for enjoying nature, too. Just a short drive from Elysian West is the magnificent Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area which boasts 19 hiking trails of varying difficulty all of which offer unique views, wildlife, vegetation and geology.
Easy Trails – for Beginners
Red Rock offers four trails that are rated as easy. Moenkopi loop is a two mile hike with panoramic views of the Wilson Cliffs that takes about an hour and half to complete. Lost Creek children’s discovery is a three-quarter mile trail featuring petroglyphs and a hidden waterfall and takes about an hour. Agave roasting pits and pictograph sites line the one and a half mile Willow Springs loop which takes around an hour and 15 minutes. Other easy to moderate hikes include Fire Ecology, First Creek Canyon, Oak Creek Canyon, Pine Creek Canyon and White Rock – Willow Springs.
Moderate Trails – a Bit of a Challenge
For more challenging hikes, Red Rock has ten intermediate trails. The 2.6 mile Calico Tanks hike includes a hidden water pocket and a breathtaking view of Las Vegas. Make a day of it on the six mile, 3.5 hour White Rock-La Madre Springs loop with views of rugged sandstone and the La Madre Springs. A more eclectic trail, the 2.6 mile Ice Box Canyon trail consists of a short trek across open desert and a journey through a shady box canyon with views of seasonal waterfalls. Additional intermediate trails include Calico Hills, La Madre Springs, SMYC, Dale’s, Arnight and Knoll.
Strenuous Trails – For Those Who Have no Fear
Red Rock Canyon contains only one advanced trail: Turtlehead Peak. This trail involves a sweat- inducing strenuous five mile climb to the top of one of the chief peaks in the park. This hike takes nearly five hours to complete but the astounding views of Red Rock Canyon from the top are worth it.
Maps of the trails are available at the Red Rock Canyon Visitor Center along with the hours of operation. To fully enjoy your nature adventure, be sure to start early and pack plenty of water.