Can you believe there’s a ski resort in Las Vegas? Travel Photo Mondays
It’s Monday morning, time to enjoy some gorgeous travel photography and inspiration from around the world. Let’s banish those Monday blues by sharing beautiful imagery and personal story telling. You can also check us out on Twitter for Travel Photo Mondays at #tpMondays for more updates and submissions for the day.
Yes it is hard to believe in the desert area around Las Vegas there are actually mountain ranges where it does snow enough to have a local ski resort. Just about forty-five minutes outside of downtown Las Vegas, and rising above the desert floor with miles of cacti and Joshua trees are the Spring Mountains National Recreation and the Humbolt-Toyaibe National Forest areas. The Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort is a catchy name that’s easy to remember and the ski resort base, at the 8,510 foot level, gets enough snow to operate all the trails around the ski resort. In early winter, snow making machines make it possible to have the resort running smoothly for the entire winter season.
During the summer time, the cool mountain air and gorgeous vistas make this entire area a very attractive place to hike and even take one of the lifts up to the top and enjoy the endless views from the peak. Hiking back downhill from the lifts are an easy alternative to hiking through the property, although the hiking rails are all open for the public to enjoy and explore on their own.
The drive up
The drive going through the desert and entering the mountain range is stunning – gorgeous morning light colorfully blankets the vegetation on the valley floor. The mountain ranges in the background are dressed up in cool shades of blue to dark purple. The views of the craggy peaks of Spring Mountain are dramatic with their exposed granite and cracked facades against thousands of sculptured Joshua trees and other small cacti dotting the landscape, magnificent views, don’t you think?
It’s a gorgeous day up at Spring Mountain National Park
Towards the entrance of the park in the grassy lower elevations, you can find wild horses roaming around the pasture area. I was lucky to find a few wild horses grazing in this green pasture area with the ski resort in the background. A beautiful caramel and white striped horse is busily chewing away at this one area of green grass with no worries about visitors in the area, including the crazy guy (me) trying frame a picture of the horse with the ski resort in the background.
My guide drives me around and points out some of the key landmarks in the area : Bristle Cone Mountains, the overlook areas and around the ski resort base camp which is empty (open summer times during the weekend only). It’s quiet and a nice summer day (around 75 degrees). We take a nice short walk around the property grounds including an open spot under the pines and aspen trees where weddings are held during the summer timeframe (it’s a nice natural alternative to the typical Vegas glitz down below). We continue the hike through areas where a popular sport of Frisbee golf is all the rage, and Frisbee hoops are placed through the various sections and trails around the resort. The resort is hosting many types of summer outdoor activities including: bike touring, hikes, Frisbee golf competitions and summer music concerts (check the website below for a list of current events and activities)
I sit on one of the stationary lift chairs used for seating and imagine how cool this area must be during wintertime and probably not so crazy, considering the four chair lifts that make up the entire resort. I’m sure it’s a unique experience outside of the Las Vegas experience – in fact over 30 percent of visitors come to the resort from out-of-state so they can experience something unique for a Las Vegas trip.
Welcome to Las Vegas – ski resort that is!
There are extensive plans to increase the resort up to 50 trails and 10 lifts in their master development plan, but today the resort is very comfortable and a family friendly destination. To find out more details about the resort, snow conditions and other activities, check out their website here.
Hope you enjoyed the tour of the Las Vegas Ski and Snowmobile resort for Travel Photo Mondays, please visit the other bloggers linking up to the site below.
For more articles on Las Vegas, check these out:
Disclosure: Thanks to the Las Vegas Ski and Snowmobile Resort for the ride and tour of the area and National Parks, all opinions and thoughts are my own and I had a fantastic time visiting the area.