In December 2017, we concluded our roadtrip of the southwest in Las Vegas. Having visited Las Vegas many times before, we were looking for something different to fill our one remaining day before flying home and Valley of Fire State Park fit the bill perfecty.
Valley of Fire is located in the Mojave Desert, about 60 miles from the Las Vegas strip. The entrance fee is $10 per car for non-residents of Nevada. At the gate, you will receive the map below.
Click any photo for larger version.
We drove to the furtherest point first, White Domes. White Domes is a very scenic 1.25 mile roundtrip trail. Toward the beginning of the trail, you can view the remains of an old movie set. Apparently, several vintage and contemporary movie scenes were filmed in this vicinity. Then squeeze through “the narrows”, a slot canyon, although not quite as impressive as Antelope Slot Canyon!
The next hike we did was Fire Wave, so named for the stripes in the slickrock that comprises much of the trail. Unfortunately, I only had my iphone 6 with me. I was really kicking myself that I didn’t lug my Nikon DSLR on this trip. The added bulk would have been well worth it.
Mouse’s Tank is a natural basin that collects rainwater, named after a Paiute Indian, “Mouse”, who allegedly used the area as a hideout after committing various crimes, including the murder of two prospectors. Although the short walk itself is pleasant enough, the real highlight of Mouse’s Tank is the petroglyphs which adorn the walls in adundance.
Atlatl Rock is on the Scenic Loop Road on the west side of the park. A metal staircase has been installed on the side of the red sandstone formation to take visitors up to a viewing area in front of more petroglyphs.
As an added treat, when we were leaving the park, we got to observe some desert bighorn sheep frolicking high above the roadbed.
In all the times I have been to Las Vegas, I can’t believe I had never visited Valley of Fire before. Highly recommended if you’re seeking something different from the usual partying and gambling!