Tour the Red Rock Canyon Visitor Center

REd rock canyon visitors center

Scroll below for a photo tour of the Visitor Center

 

A favorite stop at Red Rock is the visitor center. Not only it is a one-stop shop for getting tips on how to make the most of your visits, it’s a great place to learn more about Red Rock and the Mojave Desert and pick up a few souvenirs.

The LEED gold-certified visitor center is designed to encourage stewardship for public land by providing an outdoor experience that instills a sense of personal responsibility.

The majority of the innovative interpretive exhibits are outside with four themed elements:  earth, air, fire and water. If you are eager to see desert tortoises or learn more about Red Rock’s geology, head toward the Earth exhibit. Looking for a dust devil? Head to the air exhibit to create one yourself. Many people think this area is roasting hot in the summer; come to fire exhibit to learn about agave roasting pits. The water exhibit will remind you of how precious this resource is in the desert.

The indoor portion of the visitor center includes a reception desk staffed by helpful employees and volunteers who can answer your questions, a million dollar view of the Calico Hills, touch screen exhibits, classroom and gift shop.

When the original visitor center – which is now the administrative building – opened in 1982, about 20,000 people visited Red Rock each year. Now more than a million people a year visit the area.

To address this issue, the Secretary of the Interior approved funds under the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act to build a new visitor center to provide enhanced visitor services to the increasing number of people who visit the National Conservation Area each year.

 

INSIDE THE VISITOR CENTER

 

 

HEAD OUTSIDE TO DISCOVERY PLAZA

 

 

 

 

THEN VISIT THE DEDICATION WALKWAY

 

 

 

 

 FINISH YOUR VISIT AT ELEMENTS THE GIFT STORE

 

Friends members receive a 25% discount with your membership card!

 

 

Bonnie Springs Ranch

Originally built in 1843 as a stopover for the wagon trains going to California along the Old Spanish Trail, Bonnie Springs Ranch lies in the heart Nevada’s iconic Red Rock Canyon. Only a half hour from the Las Vegas Strip, Bonnie Springs serves the desert community as a reprieve from the bustle of the city and recalls the West’s quieter, scenic past.

general-fremontIn 1846, General Fremont (en route to California) stopped at what is now Bonnie Springs Ranch to gear up for his trip through Death Valley and established the site’s significance. It was not until 1952, under the provision of Bonnie McGaugh and Al Levinson, that the ranch saw substantial renovation and resuscitation before opening to the public as a tourist attraction in 1958. Stables, a petting zoo, and a restaurant soon followed, and construction on Old Town, a reproduction of an 1880s mining community and the prime attraction at Bonnie Springs, opened in 1974 with the complement of a functioning saloon, shops, a wax museum, a wedding chapel, a replica schoolhouse, and daily performances/reenactments honoring the Old West. The ranch subsequently added a full-sized event arena, now the first site visitors see upon entering the property, that has hosted numerous rodeos and equestrian events. Today the grounds represent a delight for locals and tourists alike (as well as a few filmmakers).

Often called “an oasis in the desert” where you can stop for a cool drink of spring water, Bonnie Springs commits to servicing the Las Vegas area and remains the only opportunity for travelers seeking lodging, dining, and gambling in Red Rock Canyon. Our fine dinner house and quaint cocktail lounge ensure that all our guests stay comfortable, while our motel offers standard suites, larger rooms with full fireplaces, and themed rooms with Jacuzzi tubs.

We have a wide variety of animals, both native and non-native, for you to see in our zoo including our beautiful wolves and even Australian emus and wallabies. Access is included with admission to Old Town.

We also maintain on the grounds a large stable of horses for your riding pleasure and offer pony rides for the kids. Visitors can embark upon guided trail rides, group rides, and even horseback weddings for the adventurous.

As Red Rock Canyon’s “best kept secret”, Bonnie Springs Ranch remains an establishment and recreation area committed to serving visitors from all over the world (or just a car ride away). Additionally, the site serves as part of our western museum project to preserve the memory and aesthetics of a bygone era.

Restaurant

The World Famous Bonnie Springs Ranch Restaurant and Bar is known to be the best food and fun in the Red Rock Canyon area…and that is not just because it is the only restaurant and bar in Red Rock Canyon!

The Bonnie Springs Ranch Restaurant has been popular with locals and visitors alike since opening in 1964. The decor may be a bit quirky, but that is part of the charm that ties the ranch to Nevada’s Old West history. The food is fresh and delicious and our extensive menu offers simple traditional dishes to meet everyone’s dining tastes at every meal. From omelets and potato skins to Philly Cheese Steak sandwiches, hot pies, and our peerless burgers, the restaurant can accommodate any appetite. Our staff is awesome and everyone at our establishment cares about treating you and your family right.

Old Town

The prime attraction and visitor center at Bonnie Springs Ranch, the Old Town contains all the facilities and conveniences necessary to enjoy a stay near Red Rock Canyon.

The Wild West is still as wild as ever in Bonnie Springs Ranch’s Old Nevada Town, a replica of an authentic 1880s mining town. Bonnie Springs Ranch was founded in 1843 as a stop for wagon trains headed to California along the Old Spanish Trail and endures as a tourism and recreation center. The Old Town, opened in 1974, revisits the site’s history and closely follows the layout of traditional 19th century western towns to allow the visitor to  experience Nevada (and Red Rock Canyon) as it once was. The spirit of the era lives on in the live entertainment (performed Wednesday through Sunday), as audiences are treated to recreated gunfights, melodramas, and hangings, and the Nevadan artifacts displayed throughout Old Town as part of the Old West Museum.

As seen on Ghost Adventures (season 4, episode 11), the ranch has left visitors stricken with stories of paranormal activity throughout the years. From ghoulish school children to reanimated wax figures, rumors persist as to the haunting of Bonnie Springs and the Opera House in particular. Appropriately, the entire Old Town area is refitted as a haunted house and zombie turf during October as part of “Bonnie Screams”.

The restaurant is open daily from 9am to 9pm! We are busy serving up the best burgers, chicken, and ribs in the West. Try our famous authentic bison burger! We have live entertainment Friday and Saturday nights and stay open a little later.

The site includes among its buildings: restaurant, gift shops/general store, stamp mill, photo gallery, schoolhouse, wax museum (accessible during tours), blacksmith’s shop, mine, shooting gallery, opera house, petting zoochapel, and saloon(available for larger parties and serviced by catering).

  • Shows, Shops & Snacks
  • Live performances and gunfights in the street
  • Black & White Photos
  • Convention & Banquet facilities
  • Weddings

 

Horseback Riding

Start your day the cowboy way, with an early morning ride or any of our 1 hour trail rides. First come first serve; no reservation required. You must sign in 30 minutes before your scheduled ride at the main bar in the restaurant. To book a reservation for one of our specialty rides, contact the office at least 24 hours in advance. Email info@bonniesprings.com or call (702) 875-4191.

Horseback Riding is $60.00 per person for a one hour guided trail ride. 

View our full horseback riding options and prices.  Click here. CIS RRStables2017

Burro, bonnie springs ranch, red rock canyonThe Red Rock Riding Stables:

  • Guided trail rides by horseback
  • Pony rides
  • Specialty & group rides
  • Horseback weddings
  • Horse boarding facilities

Horseback Riding requirements:

  • No one under 6 years of age.
  • No one over 250lbs.
  • No open toed shoes.
  • No double riding.

 

 

Phone: 702-875-4191 | facebook.com/bonniesprings LIKE US! | Text “bonniesprings” to 902

Plan Your Visit to Red Rock Canyon

friends of red rock canyon

Driving Directions

Red Rock Canyon is located west of Las Vegas on Charleston Blvd (State Road 159).  Charleston is a major east/west street that can be accessed from any north/south surface street or from the 215 Beltway. View an interactive map to locate the canyon visitor center and obtain detailed driving directions from wherever you are.

Visitors should proceed west on Charleston. The boundary for Red Rock Canyon is approximately two miles west of the 215 Beltway/Red Rock Casino.

The Red Rock Canyon Visitor Center is located approximately four miles west of the park boundary and will be the second road that exits the right. The new Visitor Center and Museum opened in April 2010.

Visiting by Taxi, Uber or Lyft

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area has over two million visitors annually. It is becoming more common for visitors to arrive without vehicles. They are being dropped off by taxi, Uber and Lyft. These visitors are surprised and frustrated to find that hiking is limited without transportation around the Scenic Drive.

Visitors may want to consider renting a vehicle for the day in order to fully enjoy the Red Rock experience. Personal transportation is needed to fully experience the Scenic Drive and hiking trails. Hiking opportunities from the Visitor Center are limited. Please keep in mind that Red Rock Canyon does not have a shuttle service. Also, cell phones will not work at the Visitor Center. However, visitors will be able to receive a signal in certain areas along the Scenic Drive.

Red Rock Canyon Visitor Center

1000 Scenic Loop Drive
Las Vegas, NV  89161
Phone 702-515-5350
GPS Coordinates: 36°08’08.3″N 115°25’40.2″W (36 degrees 8 minutes North, 115 degrees 25 minutes West)
GPS UTM Coordinates: UTM 11 S 0653467 / 4002192
GPS Decimal Coordinates: 36.135634, -115.427827
Visitor Center altitude is 3,720 feet
Highest auto turnout on Scenic Drive is 4,771 feet

Hours of Operation

Visitor Center is open every day from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Operating hours will vary on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. Please call 702-515-5350 for operating hours on these holidays.

Scenic Drive – The scenic loop is open every day of the year with times changing slightly according to the season:

  • October – 6 AM to 7 PM
  • November through February – 6 AM to 5 PM
  • March – 6 AM to 7 PM
  • April through September – 6 AM to 8 PM

Fee and Passes

Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area is a United States Government Amenity Fee Area administrated by the Bureau of Land Management.

The BLM is committed to keeping public landscapes healthy and productive. The core basis of amenity fees is to ensure the Bureau of Land Management meets its preservation, recreation, public enjoyment and visitor experience management goals identified in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area Resource Management Plan and Record of Decision.

Amenity Fee
Daily Private Vehicle $15
Daily Motorcycle $10
Daily Bicycle & Pedestrian $5
Red Rock Canyon Annual Support Pass $30
Commercial Tour Vehicle $15 + $5 per person
Individual campsites $20
Walk-in campsites $10
Group campsites $60

 

America the Beautiful passes.

  • America the Beautiful Annual Pass (an inter-agency pass honored by the National Park Service, Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and Fish and Wildlife Service) – $80.
  • America the Beautiful Annual Senior Pass (US citizens over the age of 62) – $20.
  • America the Beautiful Lifetime Senior Pass (US citizens over the age of 62) – $80 one time fee.
  • America the Beautiful Access Pass (Lifetime pass for US citizens with a permanent disability) – available at the Fee Station and Visitor Center at no charge with proper documentation.
  • America the Beautiful Military Annual Pass (US citizens, active duty military and their dependents) – no charge with current Military ID.

More information about the NCA, including the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area Business Plan 2018-2028, is available at https://www.blm.gov/site-page/RRCNCA

2018 Fee-Free Days

The Bureau of Land Management will waive recreation-related fees for visitors to the National System of Public Lands for Martin Luther King Day(January 15), Presidents Day(February 19),National Get Outdoors Day (June 9), National Public Lands Day (Sept. 22), and Veterans Day (Nov. 11) in 2018.

Site standard amenity and individual day-use fees at BLM recreation sites and areas will be waived for the specified dates. Other fees, such as overnight camping and group day use, will remain in effect.

Red Rock Canyon’s Scenic Drive

Bureau of Land Management

Red Rock Canyon’s 13-Mile Scenic Drive doubles as a back country byway. It is a 13-mile, paved, one-way scenic drive that passes through arid desert landscapes, red and buff colored rock formations, beautiful sandstone and limestone cliffs that reach elevations of 7,000 feet.

Not only is the scenic drive beautiful for visitors in motorized vehicles it is also very popular for bicyclists, photographers, joggers and walkers. The road allows for safe travel as it is very wide and traffic is required to travel one-way. Many pull outs provide parking so you can explore the desert on one of the many trails Red Rock has to offer. You may also see visitors getting ready to backpack into the back country, go horseback riding, or traversing the many rock formations by rock climbing.  Watching the rock climbers has enthused and entertained many visitors over the years.

The scenic drive opens at 6 a.m. every day of the year unless Mother Nature provides a flash flood from seasonal rainstorms or the occasional snow storm. The scenic drive closes around sunset – 5 p.m. November through February; 7 p.m. March and October and 8 p.m. April through September 30.

Follow posted speed limits so you can be safe as well as protect other visitors and wildlife. If parking lots are full please do not create your own parking spot by parking off the road and onto vegetation. These plants are native to the arid Mojave Desert of Red Rock and can take decades to regrow. We recommend that you continue to a new parking area or enjoy the drive in its entirety and enter later in the day as your amenity fee receipts are good for the entire day.