Valley of Fire State Park Travel Guide

  • sometimes the drive is better than the destination
    sometimes the drive is better than the...
    by richiecdisc
  • a fun climb to boot
    a fun climb to boot
    by richiecdisc
  • glowing nicely, early evening
    glowing nicely, early evening
    by richiecdisc

Valley of Fire State Park Highlights

  • Pro
    kazander profile photo

    kazander says…

     Breathtaking views 

  • Con
    soccergrrl profile photo

    soccergrrl says…

     Summer temperatures well over 100 degrees F 

  • In a nutshell
    shrimp56 profile photo

    shrimp56 says…

     worth the drive from Las Vegas 

Valley of Fire State Park Things to Do

  • Chipmunks Everywhere

    Oh, it was our first sighting of a Chipmunk in the US, and how amazingly funny are these cute little critters. They were all over the park, and would follow us, when we were on foot of course, although, when we did stop, the Chipmunks we saw at the next stop, did look a little like the ones at the last stop :)It was great to see and spend a little...

    more
  • Rock Shapes

    Oh, I don't know about this to be honest, we saw signs saying things like Elephant Rock and the like, next to a big rock that looked like, a big rock the size of an Elephant. And there were loads of rocks or groups of rocks with names to say what they look like, but I thought that was a load of rubbish really, and just one of those ways of...

    more
  • Visitor Center

    Your first stop should be the visitor's center. They have a very good display and explanation of history in the park. Something I did not know was that Valley of Fire was Nevada's first state park.At the visitor center there is a very good book and gift shop. You can also get water here for your hikes which is important.

    more
  • Arch Rock

    After visiting Atlatl rock, continue driving around towards the Arch Rock Campground. On the left this is Arch Rock. There is no real parking area to view the arch, just a few pull offs so be careful if you get out to take a picture.

    more
  • Atlatl Rock

    Some of the best petroglyphs in the park are found at Atlatl rock. Interestingly, the name is from and ancient piece of wood that was used to throw darts for hunting. There is a steep walk up some stairs but it is right from the parking area. Also, there is protective plastic and fencing due to some obvious vandalism. It is a shame people felt the...

    more
  • Petrified Rock

    This is a short little trail just off the Valley of Fire Highway, near the west entrance station. A very easy walk with a few "logs" visible. The logs have a protective fence around them but easily seen. If you've never seen petrified wood before its a nice walk to check out. If you have seen it before, probably just skip.

    more
  • Balancing Rock

    This is a very easy hike right next to the visitor center. The trail maker states it is .5 miles. No way. More like .3 miles round trip. Very easy. Be sure to walk past the spire and turn around. You will get a much better sense of how the rock in balancing.

    more
  • Hiking in the Valley of Fire

    You could spend weeks out here, there is so much to see! I would recommend going October-April, when temperatures are cooler because it can be unbearably hot in the summer (40-50ºC) and bring lots of water. You can drive the roads through the park and stop and get out where you want, but you miss way too much in my opinion to go about it that way....

    more
  • Elephant Rock

    The last stop along the main road. This is another of the iconic formations of the park. There is no parking right by the rock, and stopping here is a bad idea (it's near the crest of a hill.) So, you need to park at the East entrance station, and hike back to the rock. There's a trail from the station that heads slightly north and around the back...

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Restaurants

  • shrimp56's Profile Photo

    by shrimp56 Updated Feb 12, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    There are number of picnic areas throughout the park. You couldn't talk me into sitting outside and roasting while I ate, but each to her or his own:)
    .
    This IS the moment to remind you again to bring water and to drink water BEFORE your start walking anywhere.

    Favorite Dish: H2O
    .
    The picture is of a hot-air balloon from this site:
    http://www.europeanballoon.be

    Was this review helpful?

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Transportation

  • Driving or Bike Riding

    Driving a car through the Valley of Fire State Park is great, as you will see by my video, and there were plenty of motorbike riders and bicycle riders enjoying it too. I don't know about walking through though, really hot, but plenty of shade with the tall rocks, but still too hot I think.We found this place by chance as we were just passing the...

    more
  • Car Country

    Valley of Fire State Park is only 55 miles from Las Vegas so you can certainly do it as a day trip but don't short change this great little park. It's not that you need a lot of time to explore but the best times to do it are early morning and evening. If you do a tour, you'll show up midday when the only heat you will experience is the...

    more
  • Own/Rented car is the best option

    Since the park is quite isolated, the best option is to get an own/rented car. There might be tour buses, but I prefer to explore on my own.This gives you the possibilty to move freely around the park. You really must as the heat and the size makes it almost impossible to cover it all on foot.To get to the park, you must head north on the I-15 from...

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Shopping

  • Essential map

    While visiting the gift shop in the visitor center, I found a fold out map and also a book. The map is "Franko Maps Valley of Fire State Park Adventure Guide." The book is "Valley of Fire map and trail guide" put out by the state park service. Sold separately, the offers a bit more description of the park but the Franko Map was better for the...

    more
  • Great local crafts

    Among all the T-shirts and souvenirs, there was a woman who had set up a table with her own beautiful pottery. I always support local artists so I bought a few pieces, a much better souvenir than a keychain!This is also an information center that houses exhibits about the area.

    more
  • Nice to get out of the heat:)

    You'll find a small assortment of items in the gift shop from books and postcards to film and souvenirs. There was a small art exhibit when I was there.

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Local Customs

  • richiecdisc's Profile Photo
    D enjoys not wearing the

    by richiecdisc Updated Sep 2, 2009

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Valley of Fire does warrant all the desert precautions of other nearby parks. It's best to wear light-colored long-sleeve shirts and pants, a wide brimmed hat, and splash on plenty of sunscreen. Of course, drink plenty of water and consume salty snacks to keep mineral levels up. But it is so close to Vegas that on our second day, we headed out in shorts ready to not only see a bit of the park before it got too hot, but to head to Sin City ourselves. This was no time for our uniforms. It was time for civilization for us after sixty straight days in a tent in the deserts of the American Southwest.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Road Trip
    • National/State Park

    Was this review helpful?

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Warnings and Dangers

  • Drink water

    It might seem like a useless tip, but one of the common mistakes people make in deserts and other warm places is to carry water and then not drink it.Make sure you carry enough water and DO drink it.Temperatures can get very high here and you will get tired very soon and even worse things can happen if you dont keep hydrated.

    more
  • Be careful in the desert!!

    If you are going to walk outside for any length of time in the park [such as the trail to Mouse's Tank] be sure to wear comfortable shoes, a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses. .Also be sure to drink plenty of water before getting there and to carry water with you. You can lose moisture rapidly -- I didn't even feel myself sweat. The desert plants are...

    more
  • Hot

    As I noted in my intro, temperatures here in the summer can soar to well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. The best times to visit are Spring and Fall. I was here in early May and the temperature was perfect. Be sure to bring water with you, and make sure your gas tank is full -- as you can see from this photo, there's nothing here but Mother Nature's...

    more

Valley of Fire State Park What to Pack

  • No supplies in park

    Bring all food and water, trash recepticles on site at rest areas. Great spots for picnics. Comfortable shoes, always bring a sweatshirt or the like, it can get cold. tripod, extra batteries, extra film -digital or analog.extra wide angle and tele lenses will be useful. As much time as you can afford there.

    more
  • It is hot here!

    A backpack with a snack and water should be enough. You can usually park near the hiking trails. Very comfortable shoes as there is quite some walking to do and it is usually on uneven terrain.It can get very hot and the last thing you want to ruin your vacations is a sunburn, so a good sunscreen is essential. I remember there were some...

    more
  • Plenty of water

    Good hiking shoes. A hat might not be a bad idea. Sunscreen! A polarizer and/or intensifier filter, plenty of film or media cards Water! Water! Water!

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Off The Beaten Path

  • Hidden Arch

    Not seen from the end of the Mouse's Tank trail is a small arch. At the end of the trail there is a sign directing people to the very end, by 20 feet and the Tanks. However, if you venture straight past the sign about 30 feet and scale up on the right to what appears to be a raised slot, you will find the small arch pictured.

    more
  • the beauty of no set plan

    Lake Mead is probably less off the beaten path than Valley of Fire but we only passed through here en route. We actually had planned on camping here and going to the Valley early in the morning, envisioning a cool breeze off a big lake from our tent. But when we arrived, it seemed derelict and the lake was less than enticing. It was hot and dusty...

    more
  • Logandale Trails - Four wheelin' and...

    About 15 miles north of the Valley of Fire is an area in Logandale set aside for off roadin'. I suppose you could rent a Jeep in Vegas and do this, though the rental company wouldn't like it. Better is to do a little research and take one of the ATV tours. This is a series of trails that are open to the public. Basically you're riding, off road,...

    more

Valley of Fire State Park Sports & Outdoors

  • Rainbow Vista Trail

    This is the second trail head you come to on the right when driving on Mouse's Tank rd. There is no shaded picnic area here but they do have a picnic table at the trail. There is also a pit toilet. When looking at the map, the trail looks like there is an additional loop at the beginning. Ignore this. There are a series of trails all through the...

    more
  • Mouse's Tank Trail

    This trail head is off of Mouse's Tank rd. It is the first trail and picnic area after the visitor center on the right. This is an easy trial with soft deep sand at the beginning and a little rocky at some points. It is also referred to as Petroglyph Canyon on some maps because of the abundant etchings on the trail. The petroglyphs can be found on...

    more
  • Valley of Fire State Park Hotels

    0 Hotels in Valley of Fire State Park

Valley of Fire State Park Favorites

  • with sun ready to make a bold appearance

    I woke up hours later, freezing. My wife lay warm in her bag, all huddled up. She had the sense to get in hers despite it being hot. I had laid in vain trying like a lizard to regulate my body temperature. One thing about the desert, no matter how hot it is during the day, at some point, it gets cold at night. I quickly got into my sleeping bag...

    more
  • don't miss camping at Valley of Fire

    Even if you don't like camping and have to use an RV, this is one campground not to be missed. Not only will you see the park in its best light (early morning/evening) but you'll enjoy the scenery right from your "front yard." The only reason I wasn't laying in a pool of sweat was I'd just taken a cold shower. Oh, and the humidity was probably...

    more
  • being part of the universe beats a...

    If we had known just how appropriate the name “Valley of Fire” was, we may have opted for one of those cheapie rooms with a blasting A/C after all and did a day tour through this inferno en route to the city of sinners. But we had made our choice and despite the heat, it was a stunning sight and that was coming from two people who thought they...

    more

Instant Answers: Valley of Fire State Park

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

101 travelers online now

Comments

 
Explore Deeper into Valley of Fire State Park
The Cabins
Things to Do
Seven Sisters
Things to Do
Balanced Rock
Things to Do
White Domes
Things to Do
Fire Canyon & Silica Dome
Things to Do
Rainbow Vista
Things to Do
Mouse's Tank
Things to Do
Petrified Logs
Things to Do
Arch Rock
Things to Do
Atlatl Rock
Things to Do
The Beehiives
Things to Do
Cabins
Things to Do
Hike to the Mouse Tanks
Things to Do
White Dome area
Things to Do
Petroglyphs
Things to Do
Arch rock
Things to Do
Red rocks
Things to Do
one more arch for the road
Things to Do
Atlatl Rock
Things to Do
Rainbow Point
Things to Do
White Domes Drive
Things to Do
Cabins & Lizards
Things to Do
one park where driving is king
Things to Do
Watch for Wild Burros
Things to Do
Slot Canyon
Off The Beaten Path
Silver screen
Off The Beaten Path
Erosion
Off The Beaten Path
Seven Sisters
Things to Do
Elephant Rock
Off The Beaten Path
Duck Rock
Favorites
White Domes
Things to Do
White Domes Loop Trail
Favorites
White Domes Loop Road
Off The Beaten Path
Rainbow Vista
Favorites
Mouse's Tank
Things to Do
Through the Mouse's Tank
Off The Beaten Path
Fire Canyon/ Silica Dome
Favorites
Petroglyph Canyon Trail
Favorites
Arch Rock
Things to Do
Petroglyphs
Off The Beaten Path
Map of Valley of Fire State Park

View all Valley of Fire State Park hotels