Red Rock 

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area

 

Travel Time

- 45 minutes

Trip Time Needed

- 4 hours ave.

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-hiking

The Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area in Nevada is an area managed by the Bureau of Land Management as part of its National Landscape Conservation System, and protected as a National Conservation Area. It is located about 15 miles (24 km) west of Las Vegas, and easily seen from the Las Vegas Strip. The area is visited by over 1 million visitors each year.
The conservation area showcases a set of large red rock formations: a set of sandstone peaks and walls called the Keystone Thrust. The walls are up to 3,000 feet (910 m) high, making them a popular hiking androck climbing destination. The highest point is La Madre Mountain, at 8,154 feet (2,485 m).
A one-way loop road, 13 miles (21 km) long, provides vehicle access to many of the features in the area. Several side roads and parking areas allow access to many of the trails located in the area. A visitor center is located at the start of the loop road. The loop road is very popular for bicycle touring; it begins with a moderate climb, then is mostly downhill or flat.
Red Rock Canyon itself is a side-canyon accessible only by a four-wheel-drive road off of the scenic loop. The unnamed but often-visited valley cut through by State Route 159 is commonly, but incorrectly, referred to as Red Rock Canyon. The massive wall of rock called the Wilson Cliffs, or Keystone Thrust, can be seen to the west along this highway.
Towards the southern end of the National Conservation Area are Spring Mountain Ranch State Park, the western ghost town replica attraction of Bonnie Springs, and the village of Blue Diamond.
 
Located just west of Las Vegas, Red Rock Canyon offers a wide variety of things to do.  They have a nice guest museum, many beautiful views, and hikes of all distances and difficulty.

Hoover Dam

 

Travel Time

- 45 minutes

Trip Time Needed

-3 or 4 hours

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-tours

 

 

 

 

Hoover Dam, once known as Boulder Dam, is a concrete arch-gravity dam in the Black Canyon of the Colorado River, on the border between the U.S. states of Arizona and Nevada. It was constructed between 1931 and 1936 during the Great Depression and was dedicated on September 30, 1935, by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Its construction was the result of a massive effort involving thousands of workers, and cost over one hundred lives. The dam was controversially named after President Herbert Hoover.

Since about 1900, the Black Canyon and nearby Boulder Canyon had been investigated for their potential to support a dam that would control floods, provide irrigation water and produce hydroelectric power. In 1928, Congress authorized the project. The winning bid to build the dam was submitted by a consortium called Six Companies, Inc., which began construction on the dam in early 1931. Such a large concrete structure had never been built before, and some of the techniques were unproven. The torrid summer weather and lack of facilities near the site also presented difficulties. Nevertheless, Six Companies turned over the dam to the federal government on March 1, 1936, more than two years ahead of schedule.

Hoover Dam impounds Lake Mead, the largest reservoir in the United States by volume.[5] The dam is located near Boulder City, Nevada, a municipality originally constructed for workers on the construction project, about 30 mi (48 km) southeast of Las Vegas,Nevada. The dam’s generators provide power for public and private utilities in Nevada, Arizona, and California. Hoover Dam is a major tourist attraction; nearly a million people tour the dam each year. Heavily travelled U.S. 93 ran along the dam’s crest until October 2010, when the Hoover Dam Bypass opened.

Valley of Fire

State Park

 

Travel Time

- 45 minutes

Trip Time Needed

- 4 hours ave.

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-hiking

 

 

Valley of Fire State Park is the oldest state park in Nevada, USA and was designated as a National Natural Landmark in 1968.[2] It covers an area of almost 42,000 acres (17,000 ha)[3] and was dedicated in 1935. It derives its name from red sandstone formations, formed from great shifting sand dunes during the age of dinosaurs. These features, which are the centerpiece of the park’s attractions, often appear to be on fire when reflecting the sun’s rays.

Valley of Fire is located 50 miles (80 km) northeast of Las Vegas, at an elevation between 2,000–2,600 feet (610–790 m). It abuts theLake Mead National Recreation Area at the Virgin River confluence. It lies in a 4 by 6 mi (6.4 by 9.7 km) basin.

Complex uplifting and faulting of the region, followed by extensive erosion, have created the present landscape. The rough floor and jagged walls of the park contain brilliant formations of eroded sandstone and sand dunes more than 150 million years old. Other important rock formations include limestones, shales, and conglomerates.

The park entry from Interstate 15 passes through the Moapa Indian Reservation. The park has a visitor center that should be visited by anyone planning any off-road activities.

The site is marked as Nevada Historical Marker #150.

Bryce Canyon

National Park, Utah

 

Travel Time

- 2.5 hours

Trip Time Needed

- 8 hours ave.

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-hiking

-camping

 

 

Bryce Canyon National Park /ˈbrs/ is a National Park located in southwestern Utah in the United States. The major feature of the park is Bryce Canyon, which despite its name, is not a canyon, but a collection of giant natural amphitheaters along the eastern side of the Paunsaugunt Plateau. Bryce is distinctive due to geological structures called hoodoos, formed by frost weathering and stream erosion of the river and lake bedsedimentary rocks. The red, orange, and white colors of the rocks provide spectacular views for park visitors. Bryce sits at a much higher elevation than nearby Zion National Park. The rim at Bryce varies from 8,000 to 9,000 feet (2,400 to 2,700 m).

The Bryce Canyon area was settled by Mormon pioneers in the 1850s and was named after Ebenezer Bryce, who homesteaded in the area in 1874.[3] The area around Bryce Canyon became a National Monument in 1923 and was designated as a National Park in 1928. The park covers 35,835 acres (55.992 sq mi; 14,502 ha; 145.02 km2)[1] and receives relatively few visitors compared to Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon, largely due to its remote location.

 

Located 2 hours away from LV in Utah, Bryce Canyon is a great place to get away.

 

 Zion National Park

Utah

 

Travel Time

- 2.5 hours

Trip Time Needed

- 8 hours ave.

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-hiking

 

 

 

 

Zion National Park is located in the Southwestern United States, near Springdale, Utah. A prominent feature of the 229-square-mile (590 km2) park is Zion Canyon, which is 15 miles (24 km) long and up to half a mile (800 m) deep, cut through the reddish and tan-colored Navajo Sandstone by the North Fork of the Virgin River. The lowest elevation is 3,666 ft (1,117 m) at Coalpits Wash and the highest elevation is 8,726 ft (2,660 m) at Horse Ranch Mountain. Located at the junction of the Colorado Plateau, Great Basin, andMojave Desert regions, the park’s unique geography and variety of life zones allow for unusual plant and animal diversity. Numerous plant species as well as 289 species of birds, 75 mammals (including 19 species of bat), and 32 reptiles inhabit the park’s four life zones: desert, riparian, woodland, and coniferous forest. Zion National Park includes mountains, canyons, buttes, mesas, monoliths,rivers, slot canyons, and natural arches.

Human habitation of the area started about 8,000 years ago with small family groups of Native Americans; the semi-nomadicBasketmaker Anasazi (300 CE) stem from one of these groups. In turn, the Virgin Anasaziculture (500 CE) developed as the Basketmakers settled in permanent communities.[4] A different group, the Parowan Fremont, lived in the area as well. Both groups moved away by 1300 and were replaced by the Parrusits and several other Southern Paiute subtribes. Mormons came into the area in 1858 and settled there in the early 1860s. In 1909 the President of the United States, William Howard Taft, named the area a National Monument to protect the canyon, under the name of Mukuntuweap National Monument. In 1918, however, the acting director of the newly created National Park Service changed the park’s name to Zion, the name used by the Mormons. According to historian Hal Rothman: “The name change played to a prevalent bias of the time. Many believed that Spanish and Indian names would deter visitors who, if they could not pronounce the name of a place, might not bother to visit it. The new name, Zion, had greater appeal to an ethnocentric audience.”[5] The United States Congress established the monument as a National Park on November 19, 1919. The Kolob section was proclaimed a separate Zion National Monument in 1937, but was incorporated into the park in 1956.

The geology of the Zion and Kolob canyons area includes 9 formations that together represent 150 million years of mostly Mesozoic-aged sedimentation. At various periods in that time warm, shallow seas, streams, ponds and lakes, vast deserts, and dry near-shore environments covered the area. Uplift associated with the creation of the Colorado Plateaus lifted the region 10,000 feet (3,000 m) starting 13 million years ago.[6]

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 Grand Canyon

National Park, Arizona

 

Travel Time

- 4.5 hours

Trip Time Needed

- 10+ hours

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-hiking

-camping/hotel

-tours

 

 

 

 

The Grand Canyon (Hopi: Ongtupqa; Yavapai: Wi:kaʼi:la, Spanish: Gran Cañón), is a steep-sided canyon carved by the Colorado River in the state of Arizona in the United States. It is contained within and managed by Grand Canyon National Park, the Kaibab National Forest, Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument, the Hualapai Tribal Nation, the Havasupai people and the Navajo Nation. President Theodore Roosevelt was a major proponent of preservation of the Grand Canyon area, and visited it on numerous occasions to hunt and enjoy the scenery.

The Grand Canyon is 277 miles (446 km) long, up to 18 miles (29 km) wide and attains a depth of over a mile (6,093 feet or 1,857 meters). Nearly two billion years of Earth’s geological history have been exposed as the Colorado River and its tributaries cut theirchannels through layer after layer of rock while the Colorado Plateau was uplifted. While the specific geologic processes and timing that formed the Grand Canyon are the subject of debate by geologists, recent evidence suggests that the Colorado River established its course through the canyon at least 17 million years ago. Since that time, the Colorado River continued to erode and form the canyon to its present-day configuration.

For thousands of years, the area has been continuously inhabited by Native Americans who built settlements within the canyon and its many caves. The Pueblo people considered the Grand Canyon (“Ongtupqa” in theHopi language) a holy site, and made pilgrimages to it. The first European known to have viewed the Grand Canyon was García López de Cárdenas from Spain, who arrived in 1540.

 

 

 Death Valley

National Park, California

 

Travel Time

- 2 hours

Trip Time Needed

- 4 hours ave.

Things To Do

-sightseeing

-hiking

-camping/lodging

 

 

Death Valley National Park is a national park in the U.S. states of California and Nevada located east of the Sierra Nevada, occupying an interface zone between the arid Great Basin and Mojave deserts in the United States. The park protects the northwest corner of the Mojave Desert and contains a diverse desert environment of salt-flats, sand dunes, badlands, valleys, canyons, and mountains. It is the largest national park in the lower 48 states and has been declared an International Biosphere Reserve. Approximately 95% of the park is a designated wilderness area. It is the hottest and driest of the national parks in the United States. The second-lowest point in the Western Hemisphere is in Badwater Basin, which is 282 feet (86 m) below sea level. The park is home to many species of plants and animals that have adapted to this harshdesert environment. Some examples include creosote bush, bighorn sheep, coyote, and the Death Valley pupfish, a survivor of much wetter times.

A series of Native American groups inhabited the area from as early as 7000 BC, most recently the Timbisha around 1000 AD who migrated between winter camps in the valleys and summer grounds in the mountains. A group of European-Americans that became stuck in the valley in 1849 while looking for a shortcut to the gold fields of California gave the valley its name, even though only one of their group died there. Several short-lived boom towns sprang up during the late 19th and early 20th centuries to mine gold and silver. The only long-term profitable ore to be mined was borax, which was transported out of the valley withtwenty-mule teams. The valley later became the subject of books, radio programs, television series, and movies. Tourism blossomed in the 1920s, when resorts were built around Stovepipe Wells and Furnace Creek. Death Valley National Monument was declared in 1933 and the park was substantially expanded and became a national park in 1994.

The natural environment of the area has been shaped largely by its geology. The valley itself is actually a graben. The oldest rocks are extensively metamorphosed and at least 1.7 billion years old. Ancient, warm, shallow seas deposited marine sediments until rifting opened the Pacific Ocean. Additional sedimentation occurred until a subduction zone formed off the coast. This uplifted the region out of the sea and created a line of volcanoes. Later the crust started to pull apart, creating the current Basin and Range landform. Valleys filled with sediment and, during the wet times of glacial periods, with lakes, such as Lake Manly.

 

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