|CALICO BASIN RED SPRINGS AT RED ROCK
Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is a beautiful U.S. Bureau of
Land Management area on the western edge of the Las Vegas Valley,
featuring unmatchable natural beauty.
While the main entrance to Red Rock Canyon requires a National Park fee,
the Calico Basin Red Springs area does not. The area features spectacular
red and white sandstone cliffs and, as the name implies, there are many
natural springs that feed the abundant vegetation and attract a variety of
Calico Basin is a colorful area tucked between the gray limestone La Madre
Mountains to the north, the red sandstone Calico Hills to the west, and a
desert ridge to the south. Three springs with permanent water emerge from
the base of the red sandstone cliffs: Red Spring, Calico Spring, and Ash
Spring. Water also runs in washes to the north and south of the springs
during the winter months.
The water supports large cottonwood trees, ash trees, shrub live oak, honey
mesquite, and Saltgrass meadows. Red Spring flows from a shallow tunnel in
the rocks at the end of the road. The outflow from Red Spring also feeds a
beautiful marshy grassland.
There are picnic tables, fire grills, trash cans, and restrooms at the parking
From downtown Las Vegas take Charleston Blvd west for 3.8 miles (about 1.5
miles before the entrance to the Scenic Loop of Red Rock). Turn right onto
Calico Basin Road and drive north, then west, for about 1 mile to where the
paved road makes a 90-degree turn to the right. At this point turn left, drive
through the gate, and enter the picnic area. Red Spring is located at the far
side of the boardwalk.
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