I was feeling especially adventurous during a two month assignment in Las Vegas in the fall of 2007. Most likely, the exploration bug was active because of my love of the American Southwest, and my surprising attraction to the city of Las Vegas. A visit to Spring Mountain National Recreation Area was among my many adventures during this assignment.

Mountains in Vegas, you say?!? Alas, before this trip, I didn’t know there were mountains near Las Vegas, either. My friend and fellow southwest adventurer, Ken, gave me the heads-up. My client confirmed…the locals call it Mount Charleston, where many of them go when needing a break from the heat (which must be quite often if you ask me!).

So, one morning after arriving from the east coast the night before, I got up at 4am, and took a quick road trip into the mountains. Not to worry…my body was on east coast time and therefore readily able to arise early according to west coast clocks. I arrived just in time for the sunrise and a quick road trip through the area in my rented PT Cruiser convertible. (One of the advantages of traveling often and having status at National is that you can pick your car when you arrive. I pick the PT convertibles whenever I can…they are a fun kickaround car.)

It was cool and quiet in the mountains. I discovered the ski slope and several small residential areas. Great views of the desert below. If I remember correctly, it was 55-65 degrees in the mountains, and about 20-25 degrees warmer when I arrived back in the desert. No wildlife sightings on this trip.

There was an area with Joshua Trees on the way down from the mountains. Like Saguaro cactus, Joshua trees only grow at certain elevations http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joshua_Tree – between 2000 and 6000 feet. Joshua trees have a very interesting growth habit…check out the “cheerleader” at the center of this picture, and the “ice skater” in the group at the left.

I am thankful for another successful, safe adventure!

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4 Comments on Las Vegas – Spring Mountains

  1. Mary says:

    I’m glad you found the information useful. It really is a great drive, and there’s a lot to explore in the area. Definitely a welcome quick getaway from Vegas, and not what you’d expect to encounter in the desert.

  2. Great information! I’ve been looking for something like this for a while now. Thanks!

  3. garden girl says:

    Hi Mary, sounds like a wonderful adventure. Your photos are gorgeous!

    I wanted to stop and thank you for adding Garden Girl to the list of blogs you follow.

  4. CPTBoomer says:

    Beautiful photos!

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