Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Warm Weather Hiking in Red Rock Canyon

If you get an early start, pick hikes that have some shade and bring lots of water, you can hike in Red Rock Canyon during the summer. If you don't do good in heat, then I recommend hiking in Mt. Charleston.

The advantages of hiking Red Rock in the summer are no crowds and long days. It doesn't get dark until 8 pm, the same time the Scenic Loop closes. That gives you almost 14 hours of daylight. I don't recommend doing long hikes in the summer. The following hikes are short to moderate hikes in duration.

Early Morning Red Rock Hiking

It gets light by 5 am in June. You can hike in Calico Basin (it opens at dawn) and South Red Rock. The Scenic Loop opens at 6 am and you still have to drive to the trailhead, meaning you probably won't start hiking until ~ 6:30. Calico Basin and South Red Rock hikes are better choices during the summer.

Kraft Mtn

There are two routes up Kraft Mtn. that are almost entirely in the shade until 8 am. They are the West Route and the route up Hell Hill and then heading east to the summit.

In South Red Rock, East Peak will be in the shade early in the morning as you hike and scramble in the gully. Veteran's Peak will be in the shade for most of the ascent route.
East Peak

Via the Scenic Loop, Oak Creek Overlook and Oak Peak have lots of shade. Realistically, you will not start hiking until at least 6:30.
Oak Creek Overlook

You should bring extra water and wear cotton while hiking in Red Rock during the summer.