Just beyond the bright lights and thrills on the Las Vegas Strip is an amazing display of nature waiting for you. Las Vegas offers many opportunities for hiking and nature exploration in its local parks, state parks and national parks. These are our favorite hikes for families in the Las Vegas area.
First Creek Trail, located in Red Rock Canyon, is a well-traveled trail that is just under 3.5 miles, round trip. The moderate hike is suitable for families, and dogs are also allowed. There is a “hidden” waterfall just off the trail if you veer right just before the mouth of the canyon. This trail can be accessed from just outside of the fee area, and is a great option for beginner hikers.
Lost Creek Trail & Children’s Discovery Loop is a favorite for families at Red Rock Canyon. The short hike is just over a half mile, and features a seasonal waterfall, grotto and benches. Go early or late, and keep an eye out for wild burros on the trail. Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area has a daily use fee of $15 per car.
Fletcher Canyon Trail is a popular trail located on Mt. Charleston, about an hour from the Las Vegas Strip. This hike is 3 miles round trip and includes a seasonal water flow. Expect to be surrounded by the beauty of the forest, with interesting limestone features and breathtaking views. The trail is appropriate for any skill level. Leashed dogs are welcome.
Deer Creek Trailhead is in the Spring Mountains National Recreation Area (Mt. Charleston) between Kyle and Lee Canyons. The trailhead offers a parking area and a picnic area. Much of this trail is paved making is an easy trip for all skill levels and a nice trail for strollers as well. Along the left side of the trail is a seasonal creek. One of my family’s favorite places on the mountain, Deer Creek Trail is perfect for a walk, a picnic, a long hike or even day camping.
Wetlands Park Nature Preserve Loop is a 1.6-mile, fully paved loop around the 210-acre section of the park that is home to hundreds of species of animals. This trail is ADA accessible, and includes restrooms, shady areas, and connections to unpaved trails for additional exploration. While dogs are not permitted in the Nature Preserve or its trails, there are other trails in the Wetland Parks that are suitable for dogs, cyclists and even horses.
Lone Mountain Trail and the Lone Mountain Loop Trail are located just off the Bruce Woodbury Beltway. Choose between a 2.2-mile round trip up and down the mountain, or a leisurely 3.2-mile stroll around the base of the mountain. This dog-friendly trail is accessible year-round, and is ideal for walking, running and just taking in nature and the beauty of Las Vegas. The path is well travelled, making this hike perfect for any skill level.
Floyd Lamb Tule Springs Park Trail is a paved trail around Floyd Lamb Park, a City of Las Vegas Park. The park features a lake with abundant ducks and geese, as well as roaming peacocks in the open fields. The trail is less than a mile in total, and is accessible to both dogs and horses. This stroller-friendly trail is perfect for all ages and skill levels.
Fishing is allowed with a permit. Restrooms are available. Here is a $6 entrance fee per vehicle.
Creek Nature Trail is part of the Desert National Wildlife Refuge, located northwest of Las Vegas on US95. Desert National Wildlife Refuge is another favorite spot of my family, and offers a great escape from city life. The 2-mile loop is an easy trail for all skill levels, and can accommodate strollers as well. It’s a fun nature hike for kids, great for birding, and is convenient for families with the visitor’s center and restrooms located nearby.
Mouse’s Tank Trail is located at Valley of Fire State Park. The trail is less than 2 miles in and out. Fun for kids because of the name and story behind it, this sandy trail is appropriate for anyone of any skill level. Along the trail you can view ancient petroglyphs in the rock walls and at the end of the hike there is a water tank that gave the trail its name. Legend tells us that a Piute man, called Little Mouse, used this canyon as a secret hideaway.
River Mountains Loop Trail is a 34-mile loop that features paved and concrete sections 12 feet in length to help accommodate all of its visitors. This trail is suitable for strollers and wheel chairs. The surrounding River Mountains are home to Nevada’s largest population of Bighorn Sheep and if you’re lucky you may catch a glimpse of them during your visit. Keep your eyes open for other wildlife including roadrunner, deer, and our favorite, the desert tortoise.
The River Mountains Loop Trail offers many trail heads in Henderson, Boulder City, and the Lake Mead National Recreation Area. Our favorite trailhead is located at the Alan Bible Visitor Center where you can access bathrooms, water, and maps. This trailhead location is shared with the Historic Railroad Trail another great hike for families. The Alan Bible Visitor Center is in Boulder City, off U.S. 93 on the way to the Hoover Dam.