Hidden Bonanza-Bristlecone Loop is a 5.8 mile loop trail located near Las Vegas, Nevada and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for horses and mountain biking and is accessible from March until November. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.
Discover abandoned trail, alternate to upper Bristlecone for horses - no bikes This is an alternate route to the signed & maintained Bristlecone loop if you want relief from the often crowded bicycles on the Bristlecone trail. Since horses are not allowed on the upper Bristlecone trail, this is THE trail for horses; and for hikers who prefer more isolation along the trail. I've put star symbols on the route map to show you where to find this non-maintained route, from either upper Bristlecone or Bonanza trails. Please be warned that this is NOT a maintained USFS trail; therefore, please keep it "hidden" and do not tag, cairn, or mark it in any way. The foot path can be rough, steep, and easy to lose; but the views of Clark canyon and Wheeler Pass are worth it. I'm not going to give bearings for this trail because the USFS prefers it remain unknown so let's just say if you know where it is, keep it primitive, pick up any trash and enjoy the solitude!
All rankings 1-10
Scenery = 6, if catch aspen changing colors then 7
Difficulty = 3, easy grade, good footing
Solitude = 8, few cars on Sat morning in Nov
Wildlife = 2, some birds not much else
Shade = 5, only on the Upper half of Loop near ski area
Best to go up the South side of the loop. You'll be facing the right way for the views and be in the shade during the heat of day. Lower is on a fire road so would be great for snowshoeing or cross country sking. Upper is more traditional hiking path.
Started at the Lower which makes an easier hike to elevation and always you to go downhill for the steepest portions of the trail. The Lower is not very interesting, but the Upper has a number of nice views. The trail is shared with mountain bikers who all gave plenty of notice as they came down hill behind me. I think combining this trail with part of the Bonanza Trail would make a nice backpacking overnighter.
Started from upper bristlecone trailhead which loops to the lower bristlecone trailhead. It's beautiful from the upper trailhead, uphill but not too difficult but the second part leading to the lower trail is really boring and downhill.
Very beautiful hike. A great way to get away from vegas and the heat. Not too difficult, although could be crowded at times. Overall it was a fine hike, at least for vegas anyway haha!
It was a nice hike, lovely pine trees and bristlecones. Not very challenging, but enjoyed the scenery!