Although this area is signifcantly smaller than the adjacent Mt. Charleston Wilderness and La Madre Mountain Wilderness, the terrain consists of beautiful vertical red and buff sandstone cliffs, capped by limestone in some areas, that are deeply incised by narrow, twisting canyons carpeted with vegetation. The area contains one perennial stream. Elevations range from 4,400 feet to some of the high points including Mount Wilson at 7,070 feet and Rainbow Mountain at 6,924 feet in elevation. This wilderness is located approximately 12 miles west of Las Vegas, Nevada, and is jointly managed by the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service. GEOLOGY Here you will find Jurassic sandstone cliffs with great examples of cross-bedding, which reveals their origin as sand dunes. You can also find older limestone that has been thrust over the younger sandstone. The geologic scenery of the wilderness is associated with the Keystone Thrust which extends for more than 45 miles through the Spring Mountains. FLORA AND FAUNA The range in elevation in this area provides for a variety of life zones. Here you can find ponderosa pine, pinyon pine, juniper, ash, manzanita, silk tassel, bitterbush, apache plume, scrub oak, willow, and hackberry. This range in habitat and the area's unique geology and microclimates support several endemic plant communities, plants that are found no where else in the world. With a keen eye you can spot desert bighorn sheep, mule deer, mountain lions, bobcats, coyotes, gray foxes, ringtails, rock squirrels, white-tailed antelope squirrels, and Merriam's kangaroo rats. You may also spot golden eagles, red-tailed hawks, Cooper's hawks, great horned owls, Anna's hummingbirds, yellow warblers, western tanagers, and black-throated gray warblers. CULTURAL SITES High concentrations of rock art, including both petroglyphs and pictographs, add to the uniqueness of this wilderness area.

horseback riding
1 month ago

Nice trail for horses. Wonderful views of trout canyon from above. We were the only ones on the trail but hikers with dogs unleashed were just coming off as we approached the trail head. Always use cation and be aware of others when rounding corners.

A lot of uphill leads to amazing views and an overall awesome hike

Kinda like the back of mt Rushmore

Was a little worried at first this hike was going to be boring but the views improved near the end. Be ready for no shade. Good point at the end to sit and enjoy the view of the Vegas Valley.

backpacking
3 months ago

This was a great hike this morning. Good breeze, enough people that I wasn't nervous hiking on my own. Lots of uphill, good climbs. I kept going at the end of the trail and did what I like to call "baby bouldering" to the summit cairn with the ledger.

walking
3 months ago

My only problem was it's definitely not stroller capable!!! It looks like a decent trail. I can't wait to try it with a pack for my baby instead of trying the stroller. A fellow patron had just came down and said the stroller won't fit he doesn't think but to try it. So we did and it didn't work HAHA. So just a heads up.

hiking
4 months ago

Beautiful views offered a great escape from the city!

Great hike and views of the Vegas skyline at the top!!!

My husband and I are hiking newbies, so at 5.5 miles this was a bit challenging. It's an excellent work out; it took us exactly 3 hours to complete.

There are quite a few fallen trees that you either have to go under or climb around, but nothing crazy.

Spectacular view at the top! A good 20+ degrees colder and much windier up there too. Totally worth it!!