Valley of Fire State Park is the oldest, largest and perhaps hottest state park in Nevada. ‘Hot’ as in summer temperatures (sometimes pushing 120 degrees), but also ‘hot’ in that it features some incredible geological wizardry featuring spectacular red sandstone formations (Aztec Sandstone), set among gray and tan limestone.
The park sits at 2,454 feet about 60 miles northeast of Las Vegas and 16 miles south of Overton, Nevada. There you’ll find almost 46,000 acres of desert wilderness to explore. In addition to the sandstone rock formations, there are ancient, petrified trees and petroglyphs dating back over 2,000 years. You can also see historic cabins, desert wildflowers and wildlife like bighorn sheep, desert tortoise and a variety of reptiles and birds. And if you stay overnight, you’ll be treated to a blanket of incredible stars like shown here with Elephant Rock.
Elephant Rock and the Milky Way
Valley of Fire State Park Historic Cabins & Picnic Area
Camping is the only way you can stay overnight in the Park. Atlatl Rock Campground has 44 campsites for tents, trailers and RVs (some with electric/water hookups). Arch Rock Campground has 29 campsites mostly for tents and trailers (no hookups).
Single-family campsites at both campgrounds are first-come first-serve (no reservations), although you can reserve a group campsite by calling the park directly at 775-684-2270. The campgrounds have drinking water, flush toilets, showers and an RV dump station. Each campsite has a shaded table, fire ring and grate.
Valley of Fire State Park has miles of trails to hike and roads to bike. There’s also six picnic areas: Atlatl Rock, Seven Sisters, the Cabins, near Mouse’s Tank Trailhead and White Domes. The Visitor Center (pictured below) offers exhibits on the geology, ecology, prehistory and history of the park. There’s also a snappy gift store there.
One thing you won’t be able to see is the famous ‘Arch Rock’ formation. That collapsed back in 2010, but we happened to get a photo of it just a few months before it fell.
The park is open dawn to dusk during the day, 365 days per year. The best time to visit is Fall through Spring. Hope you enjoy your trip!