Travels with Tucker

Travels with Tucker

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Red Rock Canyon, a Gem near Las Vegas

Like bookends, Las Vegas is flanked by two amazing parks that offer camping, hiking, rock climbing and biking as an alternative to the glitzy scene on The Strip.  We had visited Valley of  Fire State Park, 45 minutes east of Vegas, back in 2015 and really loved it--one of our favorite places and not that well-known. This year we decided to try staying at Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area on the west side of town, and we are very glad we did.

Red Rocks is very popular with locals and visitors alike, being only 10 minutes from the west edge of the city and boasting its reputation as one of the top five rock climbing destinations in the country. We had to jump through some hoops to even get a campsite at Red Rocks, but we moved in and spent a week there. We have family in Vegas and we had visitors on several days, including lots of kids, so that was fun. We went hiking and bouldering a lot and I did some nice adventures for the Outdoor Project which should be published soon.

While we visited The Strip once, we never dropped any coins or played any blackjack. But we did get to see Vince Gill and Lyle Lovett do an acoustic show that was out of this world.
Here are some of my favorite shots of Red Rocks:

After hiking 2 miles up this canyon, we could see Las Vegas from the top
Calico Tanks are small pools in the rocks of this canyon

Lynnae hiking the Pine Creek Canyon trail

Our campsite in Red Rock Canyon was spectacular

Hiking around Kraft Mountain 

Driving the Scenic Loop Drive in Red Rock Canyon

Doing a little canyoneering around Kraft Mountain

Beautiful hiking in the canyon

Beautiful rocks

Viewpoint from the Scenic Loop Drive

The beautiful Red Rock Canyon

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Tecopa Hot Springs

On our way to Death Valley this year we decided to stop and stay for  a few days at Tecopa Hot Springs. We knew this was a small outpost in a pretty remote place, but we really didn't know what to expect. It turned out to be fabulous. Our little RV park was not fancy, but the people were friendly and it was roomy and clean. But best of all were the private hot spring pools that were available as often as we wanted to use them. 105-degree mineral water and long hot showers were a real treat that we have not often had in this journey. To top it off, there was an excellent body work person right next door and Lynnae got to have her neck worked on a bit, then into the hot pool. We liked it so much that after our Death Valley stay we came back for a few more days of soaking before heading to Las Vegas.  It turned out the area has some beautiful scenery and a very unusual  landscape that was fun to photograph.