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With its striking vistas, vibrant red and pink rock outcrops, and excellent hiking trails, Valley of Fire State Park is Nevada's oldest state park. And although it's found less than an hour's drive northeast of the Las Vegas Strip, only a small proportion of Vegas visitors make the journey out to this astonishing park.
That's their loss, however, as the Valley of Fire offers some truly spectacular scenery and unforgettable outdoor experiences. It's also easily accessible in a rental RV, and there are two campgrounds within the park offering power and water hookups.
Whether you're planning a day trip from Vegas or spending a few days or more exploring the Nevada Desert, search for an RV in Clark County and set a course for Valley of Fire State Park.
Established in 1935, Valley of Fire State Park is famous around the world for its vivid red sandstone outcrops and imposing gray limestone peaks. With this in mind, the best way to start your camping adventure is to simply hit the road and do some sightseeing. Many of the valley's most spectacular attractions can be easily accessed from the road and nearby overlooks, so hop in your vehicle and do a little exploring.
Navigate your way to Mouse's Rock Road to check out features such as Elephant Rock, the sandstone Beehives and many more. There are plenty of scenic overlooks along the way and you'll find yourself stopping regularly to take lots of photos.
If you really want to experience the best Valley of Fire State Park has to offer, you'll need to lace up your hiking boots and work up a bit of a sweat. There are more than 10 trails of varying lengths to explore, so there's something to suit a wide variety of fitness levels.
The one-mile Rainbow Vista walk rewards hikers with panoramic views out over the valley, while the 1.25-mile White Domes Loop leads you past huge boulders and through a narrow canyon. For something a little more challenging, the 4.7-mile Charlie's Spring hike is also well worth it.
But even after you've finished hiking and set up camp for the night, the attractions keep on coming. Atlatl Rock, which is also home to one of Valley of Fire State Park's two campgrounds, features some amazing petroglyphs that date back thousands of years. You'll need to climb a few stairs to get there, but it's worth doing if you want to get a closer look at this Native American rock art.
If you want to go RV camping in Valley of Fire State Park, there are two campgrounds to choose from. Atlatl Rock Campground and Arch Rock Campground are both tucked away in the park's southwestern corner and offer 72 campsites in total.
Atlatl Rock is open all year round, but Arch Rock Campground closes during non-peak periods. Some sites offer power and water hookups, and both campgrounds are spacious and well laid out.
All campsites get water, shaded tables, and grills, with showers and restrooms easily accessible. A dump station is also provided if required, and sites are offered on a first-come, first-served basis.
When planning your Valley of Fire State Park RV camping adventure, be sure to consider the time of year. Temperatures in summer are scorching and can nudge 120 degrees, while nighttime temperatures in winter may be at the opposite end of the scale but can be just as unpleasant. If you can time your visit for spring or fall, it's a good idea to do exactly that.
Whether you're taking in the spectacularly colorful scenery, setting out on a hiking adventure, or just enjoying the excellent stargazing opportunities on offer when the sun goes down, Valley of Fire State Park really is a must-visit for anyone exploring the Las Vegas area. And when you've seen everything you want to see within the park, you can always take your rental RV on the road to visit a host of other great attractions nearby.
To the south you'll find the excellent Lake Mead National Recreation Area, while steering your rental RV northeast could have you among the red cliffs of Zion National Park in less than two-and-a-half hours. Of course, if you're keen to leave the wilderness behind and head for Las Vegas, you can be taking in a show at the MGM Grand or posing for a selfie in front of the Fountains of Bellagio in less than an hour.
If you're thinking of renting a camper near Valley of Fire State Park and staying awhile in this memorable location, it's a decision you certainly won't regret.