Hiking Red Rock Canyon Conservation – Las Vegas

Las Vegas is known for the massive hotels, gambling, lights, and the food, but there’s actually more to Vegas than you think. Hiking.

You don’t have to travel far to escape the hustle and bustle. Maybe only 30 minutes or so. It really depends on where you’re staying.

Calico Tanks in Red Rock Canyon. Located right off of the road.
Calico Tanks in Red Rock Canyon. Located right off of the road.

You may want to rent a car if you don’t have a mode of transportation first because once you leave the city limits of Vegas the cell phone reception does get extremely spotty and by spotty I mean it’s likely that you won’t get any service at all.

Red Rock Canyon

The Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is located 20 minutes to the west of Las Vegas making it very practical to get to and from.

Cactus along the trail at Red Rock Canyon.
High Point Overlook in Red Rock Canyon.

Once you’re there you will have to pay a small fee, $15 for the car per day, but it’s worth it. You go at your own pace and you complete the driving loop, which is 13 miles, and you stop along the way.

Their website does highlight at least 28 trails you can complete while you’re visiting the conservation area.

Some of the trails can be flat or very strenuous.

No matter what, you’ll want to be cautious of snakes. This is a desert after all. And bring more water than what you think you’ll need. And beware the cactus.

Cactus along the trail at Red Rock Canyon.
Cactus along the trail at Red Rock Canyon.

As you pull-off at the various destinations within the park you’ll be welcomed with various views. Some will be desert landscapes, rocks you can climb over, or valleys you can walk through.

Each trail is different and each ends with a different scene.

The Weather

When it comes to the weather you’ll want to pay attention to it because it can change within minutes. You may see a thunderstorm in the horizon, but think it won’t reach you, but the flash flooding may. In a dry desert, when it rains it pours, and the rain doesn’t have time to sink in to the land so it runs off. In a thunderstorm there is also lightning and if you’re within 20 miles of lightning you can be struck. So seek shelter as best as you can.

The Red Rock Canyon is fun for the whole family. It gets you away from the drinking and gambling, things that kids under 21 can’t do, it allows you to be with nature and endure the elements. The kids will likely enjoy climbing over the rocks – be cautious of any scraped knees and bring band-aids.

This Earth is massive and with the conservation area being 200,000 acres big, this only gives you a small fraction of what this world has to offer.

You have to start somewhere and this is the place to start.

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