Las Vegas Hikes

Hike Turtlehead Peak Trail – HikingGuy.com

In This Guide
  • Turn by Turn Hike Instructions & Video
  • Trail Maps For the Hike
  • Parking Information & Directions
  • Other Fun Hikes in Purple Rock Canyon
Distance5 miles (eight.1 km)
Hike Time3-Four Hours (Complete)
ProblemArduous
Complete Ascent (?)2,070 ft (631m)
Highest Elevation6,017 ft (1834m)
Fees & PermitsPark Entry Payment
Canine FriendlyLeashed
Park WebsitePurple Rock Canyon National Conservation Area
Park Telephone702-515-5350

Probably the greatest hikes in Purple Rock Canyon, the Turtlehead Peak hike is hard however rewards you with sweeping 360 views of Las Vegas and the encompassing La Madre mountains. The trail to Turtlehead Peak the shortest peak hike in Pink Rock Canyon park, so be prepared for a workout and a few crowds. It’s value it, the views are unimaginable.

How To Get To the Turtlehead Peak Trail

The Turtlehead Peak Trail is situated within the widespread Purple Rock Canyon National Conservation Area. It’s about 35 minutes from the Las Vegas strip and a terrific choice for those who want a break from the town. There’s a payment to enter Purple Rock Canyon, or you should use a National Parks Cross to get in without spending a dime.

The trailhead tackle is: Sandstone Quarry Overlook, Las Vegas, NV, 89161, USA.

Cris Hazzard With Red Rock SignDon’t overlook to stop at the Purple Rock Canyon sign for pictures. Everyone does it.

Whenever you first enter Purple Rock Canyon, the Visitor’s Middle is value a cease. They’ve interpretive displays that specify the geology and wildlife. They have some good reveals and an honest present store with mountaineering books, water, and snacks. There are also loos right here.

The Purple Rock Canyon street is a 13 miles a method loop. The Turtlehead Peak Trail is a couple of miles in, and there are various different trails you can do as nicely (guides to a few of the greatest ones are on the finish of this guide). Even for those who don’t do other hikes, I recommend stopping at a few of the scenic overlooks. You possibly can easily do the better part of a day at Purple Rock Canyon.

When planning your go to, my recommendation can be to return early. This is likely one of the most popular hikes within the park and may get crowded.

I wouldn’t convey small (or inexperienced) youngsters on this hike. The Turtlehead Peak path is tough, climbing about 2000 ft in 2 miles. And the chute part is basically robust, with stretch where you do about 700 ft in a half of a mile.

What You Want For The Hike

Turtlehead Peak is within the Mojave Desert, and it might get very popular in the summertime and surpassingly chilly within the winter, particularly at the summit. The summit is usually windy too, so having layers for the highest is sensible. Deliver 2L of water and a snack for the summit. Trekking poles are also useful for the steep descent.

What to Know Earlier than You Hike

ground squirrel Maintain your eyes open for floor squirrels. Here’s one consuming a discarded corn chip from a hike (not a superb factor).

  • Native People have been on this space since 11,000 BC. As we speak the Southern Paiute name this space house. There are additionally some petroglyphs in the park, that are stored hidden to cease vandalism and theft.
  • On the decrease slopes of this hike you’ll see some fascinating sandstone formations. If you wish to discover them, take a look at the Calico Tanks Trail hike.
  • Purple Rock Canyon turned a protected area in 1967 and in 1990 turned a Nationwide Conservation Area, managed by the BLM. 2 million individuals go to every year. On some days it seems like they’re all there on the identical day as you.
  • The rocks you see have an fascinating history. Turtlehead Peak is far older than the sandstone that’s under, however a tectonic shift 66 million years in the past thrust the older stone (and peaks) up larger.
  • Purple Rock Canyon is residence to some fascinating wildlife, together with wild burros and desert tortoise. On the hike to Turtlehead Peak you’ll typically see floor squirrels, and perhaps in case you’re fortunate, bighorn sheep on the higher slopes.
  • Turtlehead Peak isn’t the very best point within the park; that honor goes to La Madre Mountain at 8,154ft. However Turtlehead Peak is the very best peak inside the park that you could hike to.

Turtlehead Peak Trail Maps

Hike Turtlehead Peak Trail Map Downloads

Download the Hike GPX File

View a Printable PDF Hike Map

Right here’s How I Navigate The Hike

Individuals ask me all the time, so right here you go. I have a couple of backups you could see on my gear page, but usually I exploit a mixture of these tools.

Fenix 5x Hiking Nav

Garmin Fenix Map Watch

This thing does every thing: maps, GPX tracks, compass, barometer, altitude, coronary heart fee, blood oxygen, health tracking, sleep tracking, and the listing goes on. I maintain a GPX route on the watch so I can shortly glance down and ensure I’m in the fitting place.

Fenix Costs & Evaluations

My In-Depth Assessment

Gaia Gps

Gaia GPS

I load a couple of kinds of offline maps onto my smartphone once I have to interact with the map in detail. I also use it earlier than my hikes as a planning device for all types of things, together with finding free government land to camp on. The benefits are many, I highly advocate it.

Gaia GPS Benefits

HikingGuy Discount

Don’t simply depend on a cellular phone, especially in case you are climbing in the backcountry.

turtlehead peak trail 3d mapThe Turtlehead Peak trail starts in the colourful rock formations at Purple Rock, and then makes it’s means up the steep gully section, ultimately reaching the saddle after which winding it’s means as much as the summit.turtlehead peak trail elevationThe start of the hike is the one place where the climb is pretty gradual. When you get to the middle, it’s really steep. There’s a piece that climbs 700 ft in lower than a half a mile. Simply take your time and you may be nice.

Turtlehead Peak Hike Directions

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Don’t be stunned for those who see struggling vacationers on the trail. The hike is well-liked with inexperienced hikers who go to the visitor middle, get a map, and go for it.

Video Directions

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Turn by Flip Hike Instructions

turtlehead peak trail parkingThe Sandstone Quarry parking zone is straightforward to seek out and is on the map you get on the visitor’s middle.turtlehead peak trail parkingThere are loos within the parking zone.turtlehead peak trailA couple of trails depart from the trailhead at Sandstone Quarry. You’re heading to Turtlehead Peak, which shares the identical path as Calico Tanks at first.turtlehead peak trailThe path is broad and straightforward to identify.turtlehead peak trailHead up the trail with Turtlehead Peak looming in entrance of you.turtlehead peak trailShortly after the start of the hike, you’ll attain the Sandstone Quarry. The quarry is in your right, the trail to your left.turtlehead peak trailThe quarry has some deserted blocks and an interpretive show. It’s value a look. Proceed back to the path once you’re completed.turtlehead peak trailThe trail is clearly marked to the left the Sandstone Quarry space. Head in the direction of Turtlehead Peak.turtlehead peak trailGenerally the path is straightforward to comply with on the lower slopes. There are path markers giant and small, so look for them in case you see a cut up or aspect trail. The larger (essential) path is usually all the time clear on this part of the hike.turtlehead peak trailOne other path marker makes it straightforward to comply with the path.turtlehead peak trailShortly after the quarry, the path splits. Hold left to go in the direction of Turtlehead Peak.turtlehead peak trailThe trail continues to be nice and extensive as you hike between the sandstone formations.turtlehead peak trailThe hike heads up onto a ridge, with a wash down under to your proper. In contrast to later within the hike, the trail here is properly marked with indicators like these.turtlehead peak trailThe trail heads into the wash for a bit. Look for stones lining the edges to avoid any false trails, which happen typically in washes.turtlehead peak trailThe path heads again up onto a ridge, and again, has a pleasant massive sign.turtlehead peak trailThe path veers away from the wash and up in the direction of the chute. The feel of the trail modifications here. It’s not as vast and nicely marked as it was earlier than.turtlehead peak trailSo the subsequent a part of the hike is a little bit of a “choose your own adventure.” The thought is that you simply hike up the chute to the saddle before Turtlehead Peak. The issue is that the path is steep and splits apart at many points (and rejoins more often than not too). Normally, you need to hold the underside (lowest level) of the chute to your proper as you hike up. The “official” path line that you simply see on some topo maps can also be totally different than the precise marked trail at factors. The good news is that there are multiple ways to the saddle, and when you unfastened monitor of the directions right here, likelihood is the trail you’re on will get you to the top.

Replace from Eli S.: New orange and white blazes mark the best way up. and are simpler to spot that the worn blazes within the footage under. Thanks Eli!

turtlehead peak trailSo off the bat, the path gets steep. Look forward for probably the most nicely worn path before you start climbing.turtlehead peak trailThere are occasional path markers on the rocks, but don’t rely on them. Along with these signs, there are (aqua) inexperienced blazes to search for. They blend in with the rocks so you must really search for them.turtlehead peak trailKeep away from the aspect trails that go to the other aspect of the gully.turtlehead peak trailNotice the green blaze in the midst of the rock. Search for the blazes as you climb. And in case you don’t see them however seem to be nonetheless heading up towards the saddle, don’t stress, just head toward the saddle.turtlehead peak trailSome hikers have left cairns too, another sign that you simply’re in the fitting place.turtlehead peak trailIn the direction of the saddle you’ll see this large boulder. Virtually there, the saddle is shortly after this.turtlehead peak trailOne final steep stretch to the saddle.turtlehead peak trailOnce you get to the saddle, soak within the views and make the proper toward the again of the peak.turtlehead peak trailThis primary part of the trail on the saddle is pretty straightforward to comply with.turtlehead peak trailAfter a short degree stretch, you’ll begin climbing once more.turtlehead peak trailOn the first huge junction you encounter, make the proper.turtlehead peak trailJust like the chute, there are a couple of methods to the summit here, with the trail splitting and rejoining typically. Typically, you’ll go up a bit toward the summit, then hike left towards the ridge, and then loop back round towards the summit. Verify the map part out to make sense of what I just stated.turtlehead peak trailAs you go up, the trail veers left towards the ridge (and away from the summit).turtlehead peak trailViews! Ultimately you’ll come out on the ridge with sweeping views of Purple Rock Canyon and Las Vegas in the distance.turtlehead peak trailHead proper up the ridge toward the peak. The path splits, and so on. right here too, however simply maintain going toward the summit.cris hazzard on turtlehead peak You did it, the summit. It can be windy up here, so watch out. Benefit from the views. To the southeast you’ll see the hustle and bustle of Las Vegas. The mountains surrounding you to the west is the La Madre range.turtlehead peak There are some nice views into the rock formations at Purple Rock Canyon. There’s also a small trail register on the summit (until someone has stolen it).turtlehead peak trailWhen you’re executed on the height, head down the best way you came up. It could actually get tough heading down, so maintain your eyes open for the green blazes.

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