Cathedral Rock Trail

MODERATE 309 reviews

Cathedral Rock Trail is a 2.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Las Vegas, Nevada that features a great forest setting and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
971 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

bugs

From the signed trailhead the trail starts in a westward direction at a slight grade. It winds through thick patches of aspens and evergreens before passing by the alternative trail. The trail turns south and heads toward the magnificent Echo Cliffs. The Cliffs have a sheer drop of almost 1,000 feet. As the trail snakes to the west of Echo Cliffs, a side trail leads to a small seep. Water flows from the seep in the spring. Once past Echo Cliffs, the trail heads west and the grade becomes steeper as it makes its way across a slope. As you traverse the slope, you can see the destruction an avalanche can wreak on a mountain. Many trees and boulders are still misplaced by an avalanche that happened years ago. The trail flattens out as it heads toward the backside of Cathedral Rock. This is the easiest and most enjoyable part of the trail, a cakewalk through a forest, and you forget that you're 8,000 feet above sea level. Save your energy for the last quarter mile of the trail-it's steep. When the trail divides, go right on the unmarked footpath. About a half-dozen switchbacks leads to the top of Cathedral Rock. The view becomes more spectacular with every step. On the far NE side there's a place to sit and admire the view. Mt. Charleston Lodge lies 1,000 feet below and farther to the east you can see the desert floor. To the north is Mummy Mountain; to the NW is Mary Jane Falls, and to the west is Charleston Peak. If you eat lunch, you may have a visitor or two. This is the only place in the world you'll have the opportunity to see the Palmer Chipmunk. As hard as it is, resist feeding them. By feeding them they become dependent on humans for their food. In the winter the chipmunks must rely on their food-gathering skills or perish. Watch children closely at the top; the drop-offs are more than 500 feet at the edges. Railings have been erected, but they seem to entice people to climb down to them.

hiking
2 days ago

What a gorgeous view! The weather was great and a welcomed break to the LV heat. It was the perfect getaway for the day. We started the hike at 9:30 am and it was just perfect. It’s definitely a moderate hike, but take stops along the way and enjoy the journey.

hiking
2 days ago

After reading all the great reviews on here I had to go and check this trail out for myself this past Saturday.

I’m kicking myself for not going sooner. The views at the bottom are nice but as you start to get near the top they are just absolutely gorgeous.

The trail is mainly on an incline the entire way, so don’t forget to take a break when needed.

hiking
4 days ago

this was the first time I hiked anything like this. I felt accomplished! We took my 3 grandkids and my dog and they did fine. Gorgeous views during the entire hike. We even had some rain. At the flat area near the top there is a small flat area you can camp. Leave no trace and no camp fires. This hooked me on hiking! Strenuous hike for beginner, but so worth the pay off.

hiking
5 days ago

Great hike with friends. Uphill going to the top of Mount Charleston but you will be rewarded with a great view of the surrounding mountains and valley below. I would definitely do this hike again.

hiking
10 days ago

Beautiful trail to a stellar overlook! We were fortunate enough to get some of that rare Nevada rain on our way back down the mountain! It only added to the adventure and the beauty of the day! This trail is in great shape!

hiking
11 days ago

We just completed this hike in the rain and it was gorgeous. The view is phenomenal and totally worth the hike.

hiking
11 days ago

Great views. Well worth the work up.

hiking
12 days ago

I was trying to go to the Trail Canyon Overlook (not to be confused with Trail Canyon!), missed the turn off and wound up here. Glad I did! The view was great and it's always nice to get away from the Vegas heat. This hike is a great work out for the legs and lungs! On my way down, I found the turn off for Trail Canyon Overlook and made my way there. Unfortunately, that trail seemed impassable at a certain part, so I had to turn around. Will definitely do this hike again!

13 days ago

So far my absolute favorite hike as far as view goes. It isn't the most difficult hike but the views and foliage view are breath taking. A great hike for a date too. The top of the rock is a romantic one!!

14 days ago

I’m in average shape with some difficulty breathing at this altitude ... so that part was difficult for me but pushing through that it was worth it to get to the top of Cathedral Rock, worth the workout on my lungs and legs :). It was a beautiful hike would definitely do again and hope to continue to condition myself to join the world of outdoorsy types like you all!

hiking
18 days ago

Awesome hike - make sure you arrive early as parking was full at 8am. The hike is mostly comprised of inclines with two switchbacks at the end of the trail that gets you up to the viewpoint. Great views. Coming down was very relaxing and pleasant.

hiking
23 days ago

Short with great views! Will do again with people.

27 days ago

beautiful yesterday

hiking
28 days ago

A steady hike upwards and a bit rockier than most of the trails I’ve hiked in Charleston. The view at the end was amazing and worth returning for. We stayed up there for a good bit. I’d recommend going on a weekday, otherwise it will be somewhat crowded.

1 month ago

Absolutely amazing view at the top. Steady climb up the whole way. Definitely worth it.

hiking
1 month ago

A breath taking view. Moderate sized rocks for trail, steep incline for a good time. High altitude with slight shallow air at the peak. A beautiful trail that someone wouldn’t expect from Vegas. I Highly recommend it

1 month ago

steep and rocky but great views!

hiking
1 month ago

Have hike Cathedral Rock multiple times and always enjoyable. Fairly short hike, takes me about 1½ hours, including a break at the peak to admire the view. The elevation in general and the incline of the trail make for a good workout.

hiking
1 month ago

Walked this challenging trail with my daughter and her boyfriend. I’m 50 and out of shape. This was a great way to test the endurance and strength of a “old man”
The views are awesome and I will be returning to do some of the other trails on the Mt. Charleston range!

1 month ago

Great moderately difficult trail. Beautiful views, great amount of exercise if you’re looking for a short hike. There were multiple boomboxes on the trail, which was kind of annoying. It was also slightly crowded.

hiking
1 month ago

I’m reviewing this from a family with two young kids perspective... and it is a fantastic if grueling hike. Not sure what I could have done it in myself, but it took us 3.5+ hours round trip stopping at every bench and sitting spot along the way and a long cool down up top. Started by about 8:30. 4yr old and 8yr old went up and down on their own. Incredible views. Highly recommended.

1 month ago

Great trail to hike! Some days the parking can be limited so try to get there early. I hiked with my dog and it was even a work out for her lol. It's Very challenging but worthy. It's not a boring straight trail- it curves and peaks up right away! I like that it has several resting stops with large benches. Great view once you complete it! Coming down is easy but steep so be careful with the loose gravel and rocks in certain areas - u can slip or slide which I did

1 month ago

Carried my 4yrold damn near all the way up.. but he made it down the whole way by himself! My 6yrold daughter did it up and back no problem! Great family hike!

hiking
1 month ago

Did this trail on 27 May, the weather was overcast and sprinkling with light rain at times. Trail is well visible, with benches along the way to stop and take in views. Highly recommend to those seeking a little longer of a trail that doesn't require climbing over boulders or anything too extreme.

hiking
1 month ago

Great views. Weather was just perfect.

hiking
1 month ago

Rainy sleet and snow today

hiking
2 months ago

Really nice view once you get to the top.

hiking
2 months ago

Great views during the entire hike up, and an awesome work out! If you’re not in good shape (I’m not) definitely give yourself a few hours so you can take some breaks along the way. I only gave myself about 1.5 hours and I definitely felt rushed to get off the trail before dark. Take your time and enjoy the trip, it’s something you have to do while you’re in the area!

hiking
3 months ago

One of my favorite trails. Beautiful sites to see and a wonderful summit.

Amazing trail! Very steep but the views are worth it. The clouds moved in about halfway up unfortunately and while it was fun to hold in the clouds, the view from the top was just grey in every direction. I'll definitely be coming back in the Spring!
March 10, 2018.

Load More