Hiking is a great way for your whole family- dog included- to enjoy time outside, get exercise, and work off excess energy! Around the Las Vegas Valley, we are lucky to have a variety of trails that lead to hidden canyons, ancient trees, and cold swimming pools. If you decide to explore the beauty the desert has to offer, first consider the skill level of your hiking group, dog included. Dogs do best on trails with shade but here in the desert that can be hard to find. Use the seasons to your advantage- in warm summer months, opt for the higher elevation of Mt. Charleston; in the cooler fall and winter months, Red Rock Canyon and Lake Mead are perfect. Other factors, such as health of your pet and trail conditions, should also be considered. Favorite dog hikes in the area include:
BRISTLECONE TRAIL Fabulous fall foliage makes this a family favorite in September. Located at Mt. Charleston’s Lee Canyon, the 6 mile loop hike is moderately strenuous filled with breathtaking views and cooler temperatures. The trail begins at the Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort, and winds through aspen groves and bristlecone pines. This trail is best hiked in summer and early fall. For more information contact the Spring Mountains Visitor Center at 702-872-5486.
DUCK CREEK TRAIL The Duck Creek Trail at the Clark County Wetlands Park is a lovely “city” hike. Located on the east side of Las Vegas off Tropicana/Broadbent, the Clark County Wetlands Park is a unique urban park with a variety of wildlife from herons to beavers. Dogs are restricted in the majority of the park, but not on this trail. Hiking distances can vary on the winding paths making it long or short as you like. This trail is best hiked in the fall and winter months. For more information contact the Clark County Wetlands Park at 702-455-7522.
PINE CREEK TRAIL Located off the Red Rock Canyon loop drive, this easy 2.4 round trip hike is a favorite for newbie dog and human hikers alike! The highlight for most four-legged friends is a shaded meadow area and creek located near the foundation of a historic homestead. Past the homestead more adventurous pups can continue up the canyons for a longer adventure. This trail is best hiked in the spring, fall, and winter months. For more information contact the Red Rock Canyon Visitor Center at 702-515-5350.
RAILROAD TUNNELS TRAIL This easy, flat, 4.6 mile roundtrip trail leads you through historic tunnels and has great views of Lake Mead! The tunnels were used during the construction of Hoover Dam to move materials and equipment. No longer utilized, the railroad ties and tracks have been removed providing a wide, flat hiking trail. There are 5 tunnels to hike through but the trail continues to the Hoover Dam parking lot making the optional roundtrip distance 7.4 miles. The trail is best hiked in winter. For more information contact the Lake Mead Visitor Center at 702-293-8990.