Nevada Recreation: Amazing Places to Become One with Nature in Las Vegas
Sure, Las Vegas has been nicknamed “Lost Wages,” but if you’d rather check out some amazing recreation sites instead of pumping your hard-earned moola into yet another plundering machine, the possibilities are nearly endless.
Las Vegas: Home of legal wagering and the infamous all-you-can-eat buffet. When I tell people I live in Las Vegas, the most common response is “What hotel do you live in?” or “How much did you lose gambling this year?” Truth be told, Las Vegas is quite the town for those who enjoy the great outdoors. With nearly 300 days of beautiful vibrant sunshine, Las Vegas has many locations where you can get out, go wild, and have some good old-fashioned fun, and all within an hour’s driving distance! Here are just a few of the great outdoor recreation destinations that Las Vegans have come to enjoy right in their own backyard.
Image Source: Flickr/Terrisa Meeks
Mount Charleston and Lee Canyon
It’s no secret that Las Vegas can get pretty toasty in the summer. So where’s there to go when the blistering heat is searing your feet? Mount Charleston and Lee Canyon are home to some of the best hiking, lodges, and campgrounds around. When it’s 110-plus degrees out, the family and I like to hightail it to higher ground, where the desert turns to forest and the temperatures are an average of 20 degrees cooler. Some of my best memories growing up come from treks to the green Spring Mountain habitat, where hiking, grilling, and enjoying the great outdoors is priority one.
Not only is Mount Charleston a great place to beat the summer heat, but in the winter it’s also home to the white fluffy “pow.” That’s right! Whether you want to throw snowballs or hit some sick jumps on your new snowboard, the Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort is the place to tear it up. Nestled in Lee Canyon just 45 minutes from almost anywhere in Vegas, this is the perfect destination to shred the gnar, and carve your way to ski or snowboard glory.
Image Source: Flickr/David Silverman
Lake Mead Recreational Area
Did I mention it gets hot here? What better way to enjoy the sunshine than with a big, gorgeous lake? At the lower end of Grand Canyon, the Colorado River widens into what we know as Lake Mead, the largest reservoir in the continental United States. Whether you’re a boater, jet skier, fisherman, or all-around outdoor enthusiast, chances are Lake Mead’s recreation areas offer something for everyone. Don’t have a watercraft? No sweat! Rentals are available, including wakeboard boats, pontoon patio boats, personal watercraft, and even water sport equipment rentals! Fun in the sun, here we come!
Red Rock Canyon State Park
Want to check out some of the best views in all of Las Vegas while getting a great workout? Red Rock Canyon is home to more hiking trails than you can shake a stick at.
With hikes such as Icebox Canyon and Calico Hills, Red Rock has all different levels of difficulty and distance to satisfy your hankering to hike. But if you’re looking for something to take your breath away (both literally and figuratively), check out the infamous Turtlehead Peak. With an elevation change several hundred feet higher than the Empire State Building, this strenuous five-mile hike is sure to help you feel the burn. At the top, you’ll be greeted with a jaw-dropping panoramic view of the Las Vegas Valley and a special sign-in book where you can boast your victorious hiking feat. As Tolkien said, “The greatest adventure is what lies ahead.”
Sure, Las Vegas has been nicknamed “Lost Wages,” but if you’d rather check out some amazing outdoor sights instead of pumping your hard-earned moola into yet another plundering machine, the possibilities are nearly endless. What other town offers tons of mountains, a huge body of water, and even a ski and snowboard resort all in one central location? Come enjoy the great outdoor Las Vegas and all that it has to offer.
Main Image Source: Flickr