Take in the views of Las Vegas with the Calico Tanks Trail

Hike the Calico Tanks Trail in Red Rock Canyon for breathtaking views of Las Vegas.

Not far from Las Vegas is the stunning Red Rock Canyon with plenty of hiking opportunities. The Calico Tanks Trail is one of the best hikes outside of Las Vegas. This is a great option for those who need to escape the vices of Sin City and enjoy the breathtaking views of Las Vegas.

Red Rock Canyon Preserve is one of the easternmost points of the Mojave Desert and is also located in the Upper and Lower Sonoran Districts. Keep an eye out for the Joshua trees growing in the area as well as the higher levels of ponderosa pine. It is also a sanctuary for desert tortoises. While nothing can replace the Grand Canyon, Red Rock Canyon is still worth a visit when on vacation in Las Vegas.

Hike the Calico Tanks Trail in Red Rock Canyon
Calico Tanks Trail is a 2.2-mile round-trip trail in Red Rock Canyon that explores the prehistory, history, geology and natural beauty of the canyon.

The best time to hike the Calico Tanks Trail is after the hot summer months of October to April. Dogs are welcome on the trail, but need to be kept on a leash.

It is one of the most popular walks in Red Rock Canyon, passing through the park’s white and red sandstone.

Those who make it to the top will see stunning 360-degree views of the Las Vegas Valley and Red Rock Canyon.

Calico Tanks Trail Moderate to vigorous
The trail is on rough terrain, so hikers need to have a reasonable fitness margin. Some have described the hike as a type of multi-terrain rock climbing. Hikers need to pass some large rocks and boulders that can be slippery. It can be a full body workout. The first part of the trail is relatively flat; the difficult climbing section is in the back.

It is perfect for beginner rock climbers and beginner trail runners. The route can be traversed in many different ways. The contentious and challenging part is the final quarter mile. Those who have the energy to master the final section will have an unobstructed view.

It is important to wear a hat, have a good pair of hiking shoes, and drink plenty of water. In summer, temperatures often exceed 105 °F (41 °C). People are advised not to hike in remote areas of established trails.

Red Rock Canyon National Preserve
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is administered by the Bureau of Land Management and is located approximately 15 miles west of Las Vegas in Clark County. Reserve opening hours vary seasonally, and timed admission may be required to visit.

This is a very popular area, attracting approximately 3 million visitors from Las Vegas each year. Easy to see from the Las Vegas Strip. The Red River Canyon is a stark contrast to the neon lights and the hustle and bustle of the Las Vegas Strip not far away.

The canyon features large red rock formations, sandstone peaks and other attractions. La Madre Mountain is the highest point of the reserve, rising to 8,154 feet (2,485 m).

Visitors can explore Red Rock Canyon National Preserve along a 13-mile one-way loop.

It also has plenty of mountain biking, horseback riding, rock climbing, a visitor center and hiking opportunities for visitors to enjoy.

The Red Rocks were once an ocean basin (during the Paleozoic about 600 million years ago). Today, it is filled with ancient limestone formed from marine calcareous deposits. The Aztec sandstones in this area were formed about 180 million years ago when the area was a desert with huge shifting dunes. The result today is a canyon that is beautiful and fascinating.