Fees: 30$ per vehicule or Free with America The Beautiful Pass Parking: Yes Facilities: Yes
This is hike located in the Red Rock Canyon, and since it’s so close to Vegas makes it a popular destination for hikers and sightseers. The important part is to know which category you fall into. I consider having a pretty good experience when it comes to hiking but I still made a stop at the Welcome Center to get recommendation on a trail that would fit my goal for the day. I wanted to hike but I also wanted to see the site. The staff was very friendly and after a few questions on my hiking habits I was referred this trail. I’m mentioning this because I crossed other people on the trail that were not equipped for the hike and didn’t even carry water with them.
The trail head is at the Willow Spring Picnic Area and it’s only a 10 minute drive from the welcome center. One thing to take in consideration is that the park is a one way and once you’re out of the park I’m not sure you can go back in.
The trail is moderate (park considers it difficult) and the loop goes for 9.6km with 270m of elevation gain. If you’re not use to the heat and open terrain where you’re constantly in the sun be prepare. I did the trail counter clock wise to get the elevation at the beginning of my hike. The trail is well indicated as long as you stay in the trail and keep your eyes open for the wooden spike markers.
The landscape and views change many time throughout the hike. From desert with cactus and rocks the vegetation changes to more fir trees and red dirt. At mid point it turns into a rocky path with round rocks and the views are great all the way to the La Madre fork.
I would recommend good shoes, a good hat to protect you from the sun and suntan lotion. It’s also without saying that you should always have enough water when hitting the trails. I’m not sure this is a popular trail as it’s listed as difficult and I only met a few people on the trail.
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