Acastus Trail
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Acastus Trail - This easy to moderate trail is most often started at the Spring Mountains Gateway Visitor Center. After enjoying the interesting exhibits inside, start the hike by descending the hill behind the building. The trail follows along the wash going up Kyle Canyon with a turnaround point at the Fletcher Canyon Trailhead. The trail is named for the Spring Mountains Acastus Checkerspot Butterfly that is only found in this area. The out and back hike is 4 miles with 400 feet in elevation gain.

Africa Loop 
(Valley of Fire State Park)

Africa Loop - This 5 mile loop in the Valley of Fire State Park starts at the Parking Lot #3 Trailhead, climbs to the top of Fault Mesa and drops into the Drop Slot where the fun really begins! Next, the route utilizes three different washes to reach an impressive rise named Black Cap. After a visit to the White Nipple, the route passes the Fire Wave and returns to the trailhead with 1100 feet of total elevation gain.

Angel Pass / 5 Stop Hill Loop
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Angel Pass / 5 Stop Hill Loop - This beautiful red rock tour begins at the trailhead located at the end of Sandstone Drive in Calico Basin. The route climbs over the red rock pass known as Angel Pass or Red Springs Pass, then takes the Grand Circle Trail up to Sandstone Quarry. Here, the Rattlesnake Trail is taken all the way down to the trail that climbs up to the Kraft Mountain saddle. It returns down 5 Stop Hill to the parking lot. This moderately strenuous loop is 6 miles with 1400 feet of elevation gain.

Angel Peak
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Angel Peak - Angel Peak is a difficult peak to reach in the Spring Mountains because it is located out on a ridge in the middle of steep foothills and bordered by the Spring Mountain Youth Camp facility which is secured. Although many routes have been used, one route stands out as the shortest with the least amount of work. Begin at the Juniper Trailhead on Lucky Strike Road turning off of Highway 158. Begin dropping down into the first wash of the Showgirl Trail then descend until reaching a main canyon floor below the facility. The first major ravine on the opposite side of this canyon will provide several different ways to bushwhack to the ridge where you will find the Wooden Pole Powerline Road, a steep dirt road. A left turn on the road will take hikers to the paved road that leads spiraling up to the peak with the white apparatus on top. The strenuous out and back hike is 7 miles with 2000 feet of elevation gain.

Anniversary Narrows
(Lake Mead NRA)

Anniversary Narrows - As of the Spring of 2016, Anniversary Narrows can only be reached from the top entrance either up and over Anniversary Narrows Peak or from the End Around route up the West End Wash. Both strenuous hike routes are indicated on the maps below and would have to be hiked as an out and back. Anniversary Narrows is a beautiful slot canyon of around 0.25 miles that is normally easy to hike through with a small amount of scrambling. It is located in the area of mile marker 16 on Northshore Road in the Lake Mead NRA. Until the mining operation and the BLM can come to an agreement, the slot canyon will remain difficult to reach.

Route to Narrows over Anniversary Narrows Peak (One Way)
Route to Narrows using West End Wash & Around (One Way)

Arizona Hot Springs
(Lake Mead NRA)

Arizona Hot Springs - The trailhead for this hike is located 4 miles south of Hoover Dam at the White Rock Canyon Trailhead parking area on the east side of Highway 93. Hikers must drop down to the wide wash, hike under the highway bridge and continue down this canyon that narrows as you near the river. The hike is traditionally done using an out-and-back route through White Rock Canyon to the Colorado River, jogging to the south to find the entrance to the small canyon containing the hot springs. The turn around point of the hike occurs near a landing area for water craft on the river. Total distance for the moderate out and back hike is about 6 miles with an elevation gain of 800 feet, which will be accomplished on the return leg. One moderately strenuous optional loop climbs through the hot springs pools and into another canyon that proceeds east then over a saddle to the starting point. Another more strenuous optional loop climbs through the hot springs pools, into that other canyon and proceeds up that canyon taking a left fork. This last canyon requires hikers to climb three challenging dry falls before finding a trail that leads back to the cars.

Return via Saddle Route Below

Return via Dry Falls Route Below

Arnight-Knoll Loop
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Arnight-Knoll Loop - The starting point for this easy to moderate hike is at the parking area at the end of the gravel road that proceeds to the right just past Mile Marker 12 on the scenic loop. The hike consists of all or portions of three different trails, heading west on the Arnight Trail for about one mile, turning south on the Knoll Trail to its termination point, then turning left on the Oak Creek Trail to the parking lot. Total distance is about 3 miles with 200 feet of elevation gain. The Knoll Trail includes some minor boulder scrambling.

Ash Canyon
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Ash Canyon - The trailhead for this hike is located at the Red Springs picnic area in Calico Basin, about 1/2 miles east of the Red Rock Visitor Center. The trail follows along the east side of the Calico Hills to the mouth of Ash Canyon, where it turns into a fairly intense bouldering route for 3/4 mile to the top end of the canyon near Red Cap. There are several options for finishing the hike. The most used routes involve heading east on Rattlesnake Trail to Gateway Canyon and turning right. One can either take the trail that climbs to Gateway Saddle and down to Calico Basin, or continue in the canyon, eventually swinging around Krafft Mountain on the way back to the start. Total distance is between 5 and 7 miles with vertical gain to the summit of Ash Canyon of 900 feet. Two optional finishes to this hike are found below. Ash Canyon is a moderately strenuous boulder scramble.

Up Ash Canyon / Down Through Gateway Canyon Route

Up Ash Canyon / Krafft Mountain Traverse Route

Up Ash Canyon / Red Cap / Angel Pass Route

Ash Canyon Overlook
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Ash Canyon Overlook - Although only 2.5 miles in total distance, this easy to moderate out-and-back hike starts from Sandstone Quarry on the Red Rock scenic loop and proceeds around the north end of the Calico Hills, winding up on a colorful sandstone formation sitting near the top of Ash Canyon with the town of Calico Basin at the bottom. This is a great hike for beginning or experienced hikers with the wonderful back country scenery. The overlook may be extended down Ash Canyon to the Dragon Canyon Overlook.

Ash Canyon Overlook Loop

Ash Creek Loop
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Ash Creek Loop - The easy to moderate hike begins at the Red Springs picnic area at Calico Basin. The trail follows along the Ash Creek drainage for a short distance, turns right and proceeds in the direction of Krafft Mountain, then turns left below Gateway Saddle before heading west toward the mouth of Ash Canyon. The loop finishes along the Calico Hills back to the parking area. Total distance for the hike is 3.7 miles with a 400 foot elevation gain. An easy hike to Ash Meadows alone is also nice.

 AtBF Canyon Loop
(Spring Mountains NRA)

AtBF Canyon Loop - This moderately strenuous 8 mile loop hike begins at the Juniper Trailhead on Lucky Strike Road off of Highway 158. Follow the Showgirl Trail and the Trough Trail down to Telephone Canyon then find the Showgirl Trail again to cross over to the mouth of a canyon that forks off of Telephone Canyon near Kyle Canyon Road. This canyon has five interesting dry falls to negotiate. The canyon will fork to the left into a wash that returns the hiker to the trailhead. There is 1600 feet of elevation gain.

Avalanche Canyon
(Spring Mountains NRA)

 Avalanche Canyon - This canyon disseminates from the high elevations of Charleston Peak. It lies between Big Falls Canyon and Mary Jane Falls. A good scramble up the canyon, then a circle around to the right at the base of the cliff walls is difficult terrain but provides access to several large caves and alcoves in the area. The strenuous hike will be anywhere from 4 to 5 miles with 1800 feet of elevation gain.


Baby Wilson
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

 Baby Wilson - Wilson Peak, the highest peak among the peaks of the Red Rock Canyon NCA escarpment, has a handful of smaller destinations on its face. Perhaps the most attainable destination is Baby Wilson, a small pointy outcropping to the left of Wilson Peak's center. The trailhead is Highway 159 between the official trailheads of Oak Creek and First Creek. A moderate hike across the desert takes you to the base, and a strenuous 3rd class scramble takes you up to the small peak. The hike is 4 miles with around 1300 feet of gain.


Badger Pass
(Red Rock Canyon NCA - Bird Spring Range)

Badger Pass - There are three trail heads that can be used for doing the hike to Badger Pass. The starting point for the easy to moderate version is found by driving west on Highway 160 about 6 miles from the intersection with Highway 159, then turning left and driving about 0.7 miles on a gravel road to a small parking area on the left. The loop hike climbs about 450 feet along a ridge in the Bird Spring Range, then descends to Badger Pass and the Dead Horse Trail before returning to the starting point. Other versions include a moderate 5-mile hike starting from the parking lot on the right immediately after making the turn from Highway 160 and a moderate 7-mile version that starts from the Late Night/ Old Spanish Road trail head about 1.5 miles east on Highway 160.

Beyond Mouse's Tank
(Valley of Fire State Park)

Beyond Mouse's Tank - This moderately strenuous hike through the heart of the Valley of Fire provides a lot of scrambling as it takes you out to the left of Mouse's Tank Trailhead and returns via the Mouse's Tank and a section of multiple petroglyphs. It utilizes a 1.5 mile section of the Valley of Fire wash with a mid-point of the hike on a plateau. The entire scrambling hike is around 5.5 miles with an elevation gain of almost 400 feet. For more information on this or any other Valley of Fire State Park hike, contact Brian Dodd. (briandodd (at) cox.net)

Big Falls
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Big Falls - The start of this hike is located at the Mary Jane Falls parking area at the end of a gravel road off Echo Drive past the Trail Canyon trailhead in Kyle Canyon. The Mary Jane Falls Trail is used for the first part of the hike. At the switchbacks, cross the rock border and continue on a path parallel to the drainage on the left. Turn left and follow a trail into the drainage. Bearing to the left, the moderate route climbs up Big Falls wash. Eventually, the route turns into a small boulder scramble. At the farthest point is a 70-foot waterfall that can carry high volumes of water in the spring. Total distance for the out-and-back hike is 3 miles with a 800 foot elevation gain.

Big Falls / Mary Jane Falls
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Big Falls / Mary Jane Falls - For the more advanced hikers, combining Big Falls with Mary Jane Falls creates an exciting and moderately strenuous hiking option, with lots of scrambling and a double climb totaling over 1500 feet. If doing both, it is better to climb to the base of Big Falls first before backtracking and starting the Mary Jane Falls climb near the base of the switchbacks. As an alternative to the regular trail, the old trail to Mary Jane Falls climbs steeply directly to the base of the falls without using any switchbacks. This route cuts about 1/2 mile off the approach to Mary Jane. Total distance for the combined hike is about 5 miles.

Big Wall Loop
(Valley of Fire State Park)

The Big Wall Loop - This moderate loop of 4 miles has 600 feet of elevation gain. The hike starts from the White Domes TH in Valley of Fire and uses washes to circle around to a break at the base of, perhaps, the biggest solid wall of sandstone in the park. The hike then scrambles up and over a rocky saddle to return to the TH. For further information regarding hikes in Valley of Fire, contact Brian Dodd (briandodd (at) cox.net)

Bighorn Butte
(Lake Mead NRA)

Bighorn Butte - This moderately strenuous hike can be done as either a 6 mile out and back hike or a 7 mile loop. Either hike begins from the Long View Trailhead on Lakeshore Road in the Lake Mead NRA. The 3 mile approach heads up a wash across the road with very little trail. The loop begins from the peak as it descends on the opposite side and connects with an interesting wash that curves back around to the trailhead. There is 1500 feet of elevation gain.

Bird Spring Range
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Bird Spring Range - Located south of Highway 160 near South Cottonwood Valley, the trek along the top ridge of the Bird Spring Range provides some serious off-trail hiking. The normal start to the moderately strenuous hike follows the shortest trail to Badger Pass and then starts climbing off-trail to the highest point in the range. As the route follows the ridge there are exceptional views of the Las Vegas area from the southwest. A stretch along the ridge contains some fabulous fossils that are remnants of an ancient shallow sea. After passing the Wilson Tank location, the route makes one additional steep climb to a position where both Las Vegas and Goodsprings can be viewed. The return is along the Deadhorse Trail. Total distance is about 7 miles and the elevation gain is around 1200 feet.

Black & White Sisters
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Black & White Sisters - This is a 4 mile out and back strenuous hike that starts from Mack's Canyon Road where the Sisters Spur Road junctions 2 miles in. The route climbs up the spur road then takes a wash up to the left. Arriving at the following ridge, the route turns right and climbs a steep hill at the end of the ridge up to a bench that extends out below a large black rock outcropping. Next to this (Black Sister) is a smaller white outcropping (White Sister). There is a formidable 1700 feet of elevation gain.

Black Mesa
(Lake Mead NRA)

Black Mesa - Seen on the left side of the photo above, Black Mesa has a flat top with steep sides covered with igneous rocks. The hike routes around to the back of the hill from mile marker 10.5 on Northshore Road. Here, there is a steep climb up to the mesa. After crossing the mesa, there is a faint trail that will take hikers down on the northeast corner. Finish the moderately strenuous hike by completing the perimeter back to the trailhead. The 5 mile hike has 900 feet of elevation gain.

Black Mountain Overlook
(Boulder City)

Black Mountain Overlook (Boulder City) - The River Mountains Trailhead serves as the starting point for this hike. It is located on Highway 93 in Boulder City, adjacent to St. Jude Children's Ranch. Total distance for the hike is about 6 miles with an elevation gain of 1065 feet. The moderate hike technically terminates at the Black Mountain Overlook, rather than the actual peak. From the top, there is a panoramic view that includes Lake Mead to the east, Boulder City to the south, and Las Vegas to the northwest. This destination can also be combined with a hike to Red Mountain, resulting in a moderately strenuous 7 mile distance.

Black Mountain Peak & Arch
(Boulder City)

 Black Mountain Peak & Arch - This hike is a 7 mile partial loop that begins at the River Mountains Trailhead in Boulder City next to St. Jude Children's Ranch. The route climbs up between the visible red and black peaks and continues to the right out to the Black Mountain Overlook. From there, the trail becomes strenuous and difficult to negotiate as it drops off the other side. After reaching the peak, drop down into the wash and loop around to a large arch. From there, traverse back to the original ridge for a total elevation gain of 1800 feet.

Black Mountain

Black Mountain (Henderson) - The trailhead for this hike is located off Shadow Canyon Drive in the southern part of Sun City Anthem. There is a small parking area along the road that will hold about five vehicles. From the lot, a paved walking trail heads southeast toward a flood containment dam. At the back of the basin, the trail is marked by a sign. The out-and-back trail is easy to follow, except for one section near the beginning where it climbs through a 10 foot rock face. From that point, it becomes progressively steeper as it passes through a lava field to the top. Because the mountain is so close to the city, the views are fantastic. Total distance for the hike is a strenuous 6 miles with an elevation gain of 2100 feet.

Black Mountain O&B

Black Mountain Loop

Black Velvet Canyon
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

 Black Velvet Canyon - Since this canyon is located mid-way between the north and south ends of the Red Rock Canyon NCA escarpment, it can only be accessed by hiking in some distance unless you drive the Black Velvet dirt road right to the mouth. Therefore, this hike is generally done as an 8 mile loop using several of the bike trails that lead out of the Late Night Trailhead on Highway 160. Once in the canyon, the boulder scrambling is moderately strenuous until a dead end is reached at a dry fall. Further exploration is seldom done by hikers. The moderately strenuous hike has 1100 feet of elevation gain.

Blue Diamond Bike Trails (Hurl Trails)
(Red Rock Canyon NCA - Blue Diamond)
Blue Diamond Bike Trails - The start for this hike is found on the right just across the bridge that leads into the community of Blue Diamond. The trail makes a loop using the bicyclers route called Hurl, starting south on a section of the Old Spanish Trail before bending to the right, eventually climbing a long, gradual ridge above Blue Diamond with views of the area. There are two options for closing the hike. Either moderate route is around 6 miles with 800 feet of elevation gain.

Blue Diamond Canyons
(Red Rock Canyon NCA - Blue Diamond Hills)

Blue Diamond Canyons - Generally referred to as Blue Diamond Canyons Numbers 1 through 5, these canyons are located on the southwest side of Blue Diamond Hill, and are accessed directly from Highway 159. Canyon #1 is closest to the gypsum plant at the south end of the hill across from one of the entrance roads to the community of Blue Diamond. The other canyons are in order to the north. All three involve varying levels of boulder scrambling and have dry waterfalls that must be negotiated. Numbers 1 and 2 are not as easy to descend as they are to climb. Canyon #3 works decently either way. Distances vary up to 5 miles depending on the combination of canyons or adjacent ridges that are incorporated into the hike.

Route up Canyon #2 and down Canyon #3

Blue Point Springs
(Lake Mead NRA)

Blue Point Springs - In a northern corner of the Lake Mead NRA adjacent to the Valley of Fire State Park, there lies Blue Point Springs. A short moderate walk past the spring wash into the Valley of Fire redstone rewards the hiker with interesting redstone formations. There are several arches, mammoth rock, and a cow column. A loop hike will range from 5 to 7 miles with minimal elevation gain.

Bluff Trail
(Lake Mead NRA)

Bluff Trail - This easy hike is accessed from the Las Vegas Bay Marina & Campground, which is located on Lakeshore Road 2.1 miles east of the intersection of Lakeshore and Lake Mead Drive, which passes Lake Las Vegas. The hike is inside the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, which requires a daily use fee or park pass. The starting point is an information kiosk inside the campground, adjacent to a small parking area that holds about four vehicles. The out-and-back route follows the Las Vegas Wash for about one mile to a bluff above the wash and offers an opportunity to do some further exploring in undeveloped terrain upstream. Total distance is between 2 and 3 miles with elevation gain of less than 300 feet.

Bonanza Peak
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Bonanza Peak - This strenuous 10-mile out-and-back hike starts from the northern trail head of the Bonanza Trail, located near the community of Cold Creek. The trail climbs fairly moderately to a saddle on the main ridge of the Spring Mountains overlooking the Pahrump area with views toward the mountains surrounding Death Valley. This opening section includes 55 switchbacks. From the saddle, turn left on the Bonanza Trail and head toward the peak. Just before the trail begins a descent approaching McFarland Peak, a cairn on the left indicates where the last short climb to the peak begins. Total elevation gain for the hike is 2500 feet.

Bonanza Trail
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Bonanza Trail - The entire 13-mile trail starts from the Bristlecone Trail about 2 miles from the winter skiing operation and proceeds north along the spine of the Spring Mountain Divide to a parking area about 2 miles from the community of Cold Creek. The hike is considered very strenuous and is sometimes referred to as "more difficult that Charleston Peak." From south to north, the elevation gain is around 3400 feet. From north to south, the elevation gain is more with 4800 feet. One option, if you don't want to do the entire trail is to take the section north from Bristlecone for a few miles along the ridge. Many locations along the ridge have open views in both directions. In this case, plan on doing an out-and-back hike for 3 or 4 miles in each direction. Total climb over the 4-mile section is about 1200 feet.

From South to North Route (Lee Canyon to Cold Creek)
From North to South (Cold Creek to Lee Canyon)

McFarland Base Approach on the Bonanza Trail (strenuous)

Bridge Mountain
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Bridge Mountain - This is a very strenuous formidable climb and scramble with some 3rd class rock climbing. There is a huge amount of exposure to high cliffs and drop offs. Set between Fern Canyon and Ice Box Canyon, this peak, however, does offer tremendous views and a great amount of satisfaction. It should only be done with guidance the first time. A drive up 4WD, high clearance Rocky Gap Road starts the day. A hike out to a 1000 foot cliff overlook, an exposed steep descent down the bench and coming to terms with the sandstone crack ascent are all involved to bagging this 6.5 mile peak hike with 2800 feet of elevation gain.

Bristlecone Loop
(Spring Mountains NRA)

Bristlecone Loop - The starting point for this moderate hike is at the end of Lee Canyon Road (Highway 156) just beyond the ski resort. The 2-mile western portion of the loop hike climbs through the pine and aspen forests, with some minor rock scrambling. The eastern part follows a forest service road that runs back to Highway 157. Most of this part of the hike has open views of the peaks in the vicinity of Lee Canyon. The third part of the loop is along the highway. Total distance is 6 miles with 750 feet of elevation gain.

Brownstone Canyon
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Brownstone Canyon - The moderately strenuous 8-mile loop hike into Brownstone Canyon begins at Sandstone Quarry in Red Rock. Follow the Calico Tanks Trail but stay in the wash and hike the trail around the base of Red Cap before dropping through another wash into Gateway Canyon. The off-trail route turns left and climbs to the top of that canyon. After crossing the sandstone east of Turtlehead, the route drops through an opening in the sandstone to a protected wall with significant pictographs on the edge of Brownstone Canyon. Turn left up the canyon and cross over a saddle at the base of the La Madre Mountains. It's about 3 miles of hiking in a gravel drainage to return to Sandstone Quarry. The loop contains around 2300 feet of elevation gain.

Burro Trail
(Red Rock Canyon NCA)

Burro Trail - This is a point to point hike from the Late Night Trailhead on Highway 160 to the Blue Diamond Trailhead off of Highway 159. The 8.5 mile moderately strenuous hike in the desert gains 1070 feet in elevation but, also loses 1612 feet in elevation. The hike passes by some of the best scenery that middle Cottonwood Valley has to offer then climbs up and over the Blue Diamond tertiary ridge for the finish.