Saturday, October 4, 2014

Red Rock Canyon - 10/03/14

The Red Rock Canyon is a 200,000 acre, National Conservation Area managed by the Bureau of Land Management located about 15 miles west of Las Vegas. About a million people visit here every year. The sandstone escarpment is spectacular and can be seen on the scenic drive.

There is a 13-mile, one-way, loop road through the area with overlooks and trailheads that provide the opportunity to see and explore this beautiful landscape. There are 19 trails that enable an up-close look at the amazing rock formations here. Bicycling is very popular as well.

Stop at the Visitor Center (a couple of miles from the entrance) to pick up a Visitor Guide. It provides a great overview of all of the trails as well as a map of the Scenic Drive. Also at the Visitor Center are some great exhibits of the Mojave Desert, the geology of the area, and the wildlife found here. This is where you can pick up a trail map and obtain other information about Red Rock Canyon. Rock-climbing and overnight information and permits can be obtained at the Visitor Center as well or the climbing ranger can be contacted at 702-515-5358.

We parked in the lot at the trailhead and did some exploring on the Calico Trail (the first stop on the scenic loop after the visitor center).

Love the colors...

Sadie on the trail.

Loved these formations, too.

Sandstone Quarry, We parked and did some exploring here.

The quarry blocks weighed about 10 tons. below are some that are remaining in the area.

Turtlehead Peak.

Mojave Desert

Lost Creek Trail. This was our final bit of hiking for the day. These rock formations were incredible.

Can you see John and Sadie?

Sadie, the trailblazer. She loves it when we take her with us. This is one of the few federally-managed sites we have visited this year that allows dogs (on a leash, of course). Thank you!

Can you see the climber in a blue shirt?

Here he is.

Here's another climber.

Just seeing these climbers from a distance made be very nervous for them!!

On our way out of Red Rock Canyon, John saw these burros in the distance. Anglo settlers abandoned them in the late 1800s and they have survived on their own in the harsh climate of the Mojave Desert. We were so happy we got to see them on our drive along the scenic loop.

This one was very intent on staring me down.

We did not spend that much time here today, because we know we will be visiting Red Rock Canyon when Amanda and Justine visit in November. I can't wait for them to see this place!

It's a fabulous break from the Vegas Strip to take a drive out to Red Rock Canyon. When we visited Las Vegas 3 years ago, we made a quick trip to see this place. Today we spent a little more time here and want to spend more!  Love it.


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