Valley of Fire

December 22, 2015 at 5:34 am (Nature, Nature photography, Nevada, Southwest Landscapes) (, )

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One of the most beautiful Western landscapes I’ve ever seen is in a Nevada state park that I would have missed if I hadn’t exchanged a little trail banter with a fellow hiker at Red Rock Canyon near Las Vegas this past May.

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The Valley of Fire State Park is aptly named, and the “fire” really shows its mettle at last light or in the day’s first kiss of sun.

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Layers of mustard rock alternate with burnt sienna, rust, and gunmetal gray in an amazing palette of color and shapes. The day I was there, a wedding party was getting its photo taken with the rainbow landscape as a backdrop.

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The park has a wonderful visitor center, and they set out birdseed for the quail, antelope squirrels, and other birds. (Stay tuned – critters and petroglyphs in the next post.) The view above can be seen from there.

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There are two lovely campgrounds here as well.  I parked myself at the Atlatl Campground, my site nudged up to cozy red rocks.

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The other campground was near the natural arch (below).

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You don’t have to hike to see many of these magnificent vistas.

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The area below is called the Beehives, for obvious reasons.

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I did the Fire Wave trail early in the morning.

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The swirly layers remind me of the Vermillion Cliffs in Arizona, which I have never had the pleasure to visit.

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It’s a fairly easy trail, and the rocks provide good grip on the shoes.

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The stone cabins below were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps as shelter for travelers.

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The park is in the Mojave Desert and can get very very hot in summer.  Because it’s about an hour away from Vegas, it’s also a very popular spot, and some of the parking areas can be full on weekends.

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But as photographers know, the best time to be anywhere in nature is very early, and very late in the day.

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Feel free to reblog or share

Website:  CindyMcIntyre.com

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Contact:  cindy at cindymcintyre.com

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3 Comments

  1. mbkircus said,

    What stupendous pictures of a remarkable place. It’s now on my bucket list.

  2. Tracy Becker said,

    I am adding it to my bucket list too.

  3. Alexa said,

    🙂 Stunning pictures!

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