Visit Valley of Fire State Park: The Best Hikes and Things to Do

I had to convince my husband to visit Valley of Fire State Park during our road trip through the American Southwest. The place didn’t disappoint for sure. In fact, it impressed all of us the moment we left West Entrance station. 

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Visit Valley of Fire State Park: Guide and Tips for Frequent and First-Time Visitors

If you’ve never thought about adding a visit to Valley of Fire State Park to your Nevada road trip, do it right now. The area has everything to keep you on your feet and constantly wow you with its impeccable landscape. From natural sandstone arches to slot canyons and multicolor rock formations, the park showcases the best of Nevada.

Are you more into history than nature? Then you should definitely visit Valley of Fire State Park. Once a seasonal home to some Native American tribes, the place still keeps their legacy alive. Some areas of the park are loaded with ancient petroglyphs dating back more than 2,000 years.

Apart from the humans, the forces of nature have made their mark on Valley of Fire State Park, a place you ought to visit at least once. No doubt about it. The work of the water and wind is not complete yet. Unnoticeably to the untrained eye, the nature ceaseless reshapes the surface of the park the moment you read this.

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Why Should You Visit Valley of Fire State Park Now?

A completely different landscape and natural attractions will be on display for people to visit in Valley of Fire State Park hundreds of years from now. More spectacular sandstone formations or slot canyons might be residing here at that time. You can’t tell for sure how the area will look in the future. But you certainly should visit Valley of Fire State Park now and admire its diversity before it changes.

To make your first visit to the Valley of Fire more enjoyable, we have prepared the complete guide with some of the helpful tips and tricks. Furthermore, you will find a map of the best places to see in the area almost at the end of the post. Finally, this guide to visiting Valley of Fire State Park will introduce you to the best hikes and the most photographic places in the region. Let’s start this outdoor adventure.

Visit Valley of Fire State Park: Introduction

What sets Valley of Fire State Park apart from other alluring places in Nevada and the entire American Southwest? Some say that the area looks like it has been put on fire during sunset. Others insist that the park has the most astounding natural landmarks in the state. Yet still many visit Valley of Fire State Park to drive along the most beautiful road in Southern Nevada.

Reasons to visit Valley of Fire State Park are abundant. Indeed, neither returning nor first-time visitors can’t deny the natural beauty of the area.

Famous for its 40,000 acres of Aztec sandstone formations, the place has adorned itself with bountiful natural shades on top of its signature reds. From vibrant yellows to beiges, oranges, and pinks, vibrant colors festoon Valley of Fire State Park, making it its own painter. 

Visit Valley of Fire State Park - Roads and Destinations

Visit Valley of Fire State Park: History

Yet the brilliant colors are not the main inspiration for your trip to Valley of Fire State Park. The area that was officially opened as Nevada’s first state park in 1935 bewilders with its history and geology.

The place looked entirely different millions of years ago. At one point, Valley of Fire State Park was submerged under the sea. Over time, the water slowly dried up, transforming the area into a place of mud floods and slow-moving streams.

When the moisture completely disappeared, a vast sand dune desert claimed its rights on the area. The transformation had yet to continue. Being constantly molded by tireless actions of the wind and water, the sand dunes cemented together into the striking sandstone formations you want to visit in Valley of Fire State Park today.

Interesting Fact: The bright coloration of the rock outcrops is the result of icon oxide, silica, and manganese present in the area. So much for the mystery of the place after all.

Yet if you think that the area’s transformation is complete, visit Valley of Fire State Park in at least ten years from now. To the untrained eye, the area will look the same. Small alterations will, however, take place. Changes are inevitable even in such a rocky place. 

Visit Valley of Fire State Park - Roads and Destinations

Visit Valley of Fire: Location and Directions

With that said, you want to visit Valley of Fire State Park now or in the near future. The place is worth it to say the least. Moreover, getting to the iconic red area of Nevada is easier than you can think. Located less than an hour away from Las Vegas, Valley of Fire State Park welcomes hundreds of thousands of visitors a year.

To put some numbers behind the words, the Valley of Fire sits in the Mojave Desert, about 47 miles from the City of Lights. Overton, located nearly 11 miles away, is the nearest place to the East Entrance.

Visit Valley of Fire by Car

Visiting the Valley of Fire by car is by far the most convenient way. The park has two entrances: West and East. The main landmarks of the area are nestled a short drive from either of these entrances. The majority of international outdoor adventures fly into Las Vegas and visit the Valley of Fire on a road trip that often lasts the entire day. 

Visit Valley of Fire from Las Vegas

Take I-15 N and drive for approximately 33 miles. Take exit 75 (follow signs for Valley of Fire State Park and Lake Mead National Recreation Area). Merge onto Valley of Fire Highway and continue on for about 12 miles. Overall, it takes approximately 50 minutes to reach the park. 

Visit Valley of Fire from Overton  

Take NV-169 S and follow it for approximately 9 miles. Turn right onto Valley of Fire Highway and continue on for about 1.3 miles. The drive is approximately 15 minutes. Your visit to the Valley of Fire will surely last longer.  

Visit Valley of Fire State Park - Roads and Destinations
Visit Valley of Fire State Park: West Entrance

When to Visit Valley of Fire State Park

The park keeps its doors open all year round, from sunrise to sunset. Those who wish to visit Valley of Fire State Park and stay overnight here must get a camping permit. Yet regardless of the duration of your trip, the area has everything to astound and amuse you. 

When You Visit Valley of Fire during Peak Season

Located in the Mojave Desert, Valley of Fire State Park is, however, not an ideal place to visit during the hot summer days. Normally, daytime temperatures reach up to 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Frankly, it’s too hot even for desert inhabitants that are mostly active in the wee hours or at night.

TIP: Day visitors are recommended to plan their visit to Valley of Fire State Park either in the early morning or in the late afternoon. 

When You Visit Valley of Fire during Slow Season

Nevada’s monsoon season, which happens from July through August, as well as winter months also present some challenges. If you don’t mind getting a little bit wet in the desert, feel free to visit Valley of Fire State Park at these times.

TIP: Those who plan to explore the park’s slot canyons should plan their excursions before noon. Summer thunderstorms are frequent in the afternoon. With that said, hiking in the slot canyons during the rainy season can be dangerous due to flash floods. 

When You Visit Valley of Fire during Shoulder Seasons

This leaves us with spring and fall, the most enjoyable times to visit Valley of Fire State Park. The temperatures are never too hot or too cold. Furthermore, practically no precipitation disturbs your outdoor adventures in the area.

TIP: In spring, vibrant wildflowers reward you with an additional pop of color. The White Domes Trail usually steals the show with yellow hues adorning the area along the path. If it’s not enough, fewer crowds visit Valley of Fire State Park during the shoulder seasons, making it a primary destination for photographers that don’t want to be disturbed by other hikers. 

The Best Things to Do in Valley of Fire State Park

If you’ve never been to Valley of Fire State Park, plan that first trip as soon as possible. The area is capable of impressing even the most skeptical city lovers, leave alone the enthusiastic outdoor adventurers. From flawless desert vistas, to rock climbing, cycling on the roadways throughout the park, and hiking to the unique sandstone formations, a visit to the Valley of Fire packs a lot in a short amount of time.

Without further ado, here are the best things to do and places to see in the region. Have I mentioned that many of these attractions are nestled near the road? Some, however, require short hiking. 

Beehives

An easy recognizable group of the red sandstone formations grabs your attention almost as soon as you enter the park from the West Entrance. As you get closer, a roadside sign indicates that you’ve reached the Beehives.

A small parking lot right in front of the place makes it easier to visit the first landmark of the Valley of Fire. Pull over and feel free to climb the rocks and explore small caves at the bottom. A short trail winds through the Beehives, culminating your visit to this part of Valley of Fire State Park with beautiful views of the Muddy Mountains in the distance.

It’s not an accident that the place was named after dome-shaped structures in which bees are kept. Indeed, the large sandstone formations nestled close to each other with plenty of places to explore look like giant beehives.

Interesting Fact: Once you look closer at the rocks, prominent grooved lines striping the formations arouse your interest. Interestingly, these lines attest to multiple layers of silt that was deposed at different times. A trained eye can even recognize the angles at which the wind was moving at the time the natural materials were deposited.

Campgrounds: With 3 group campgrounds, restrooms, and a picnic shelter, the Beehives area accommodations large parties that stay overnight in the park. 

Scenic Loop Road 

While the campers can spend quite a lot of time at the Beehives area, the first-time and day visitors should get back on the road and explore other natural attractions. The 2-mile Scenic Loop Road comes next.

Featuring some of the most interesting rock formations, such as Arch Rock and Piano Rock, the road is regarded as one of the most panoramic drives in Southern Nevada. They say once you drive along this scenic loop, you’re sure to visit Valley of Fire State Park again and again.

Visit Valley of Fire State Park - Roads and Destinations

Atlatl Rock

As I already mentioned, some of the most enticing places sit near the Scenic Loop Road. And one of the first places you want to visit near the West Entrance of the Valley of Fire is Atlatl Rock. Dotted with the spectacular petroglyphs, dating back nearly 3,000 years, this place is of most interest to history buffs.

Even the name of the rock has a direct relationship to ancient Indian tribes that lived here centuries and centuries ago. “Atlatl” was a devise used to propel a spear. You can find images of this primitive weapon along with drawings of animals and things that have no meaning in today’s society carved on the massive walls of the rock.

TIP: For an overnight stay, head to the adjacent Atlatl Campground. With 44 campsites, it’s one of the most popular camping places to visit in Valley of Fire State Park. Keep in mind, though, half of the campsites are primitive and half are equipped with water and power hookups. So if you travel by RV, claim one of these spots early, before they are all occupied. 

Arch Rock

Continue on along the Scenic Loop Drive to visit another popular landmark of Valley of Fire State Park. Alluring with its spectacular shape, Arch Rock is especially popular among photographers.

While the latter capture the natural beauty of the formation at different lights, history and geology enthusiasts marvel at the rock’s story. Presumably, the arch was formed by strong winds and rain slowly washing away the materials holding its sand grains together. Over time, the weakened part of the rock fell off, allowing the natural arch to form.

TIP: They predict that the iconic landmark one must visit when in the Valley of Fire will eventually collapse under its own weight. Apparently, even visually strong giants are fragile. Thus, climbing on Arch Rock is not allowed. Let’s preserve this remarkable natural wonder for many other visitors of the Valley of Fire to enjoy.

Campgrounds: The Arch Rock Campground sits near Arch Rock. Its 29 rather primitive campsites operate seasonally, on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Fire Cave/Winstone Arch

Fire Cave or Winstone Arch is not an easy place to visit in Valley of Fire State Park. Nestled near the Scenic Loop Road, the rock formation is so tiny that many day-trippers often miss it. Those who intend to go off-the-beaten path to find this hidden gem should drive almost to the end of the scenic road. Park and hike for a couple of minutes. Don’t walk too far or you risk to miss the cave/arch.

TIP: The last stretch of the Scenic Loop Road is unpaved. Yet all cars can safely traverse along this section.

Visit Valley of Fire State Park - Roads and Destinations

Petrified Logs

Whether you start your day visit to Valley of Fire State Park from the west or east, two Petrified Logs’ sites welcome you not far from each entrance. What is so interesting about these dead trees? Normally, a tree decomposes after it dies, nurturing the soil and eventually disappearing completely.

The Petrified Logs, however, have existed for millions of years. Washed into the park from an ancient forest, they lack any organic things that had comprised them in the first place. Instead, different minerals filled up the logs and stumps, keeping them “alive” and giving them their distinctive colors. 

TIP: A few petrified logs lay close to the road. Park in the parking lots nearby and explore the areas on foot. 

Visitor Center

Right before you enter the main section of the park, swing by the Visitor Center. Open daily from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, it’s a great place to visit in Valley of Fire State Park to learn about its wildlife, hiking trails, and prehistory. For those who look for souvenirs to remind them of the park, stop at a gift shop and select something for yourself from its expansive collection of postcards, books, and other souvenirs.  

Mouse’s Tank  

If Atlatl Rock impresses you with its ancient carvings, Mouse’s Tank leaves you speechless. Known as one of the largest concentrations of petroglyphs in Nevada, it invites you to travel in time and visit the place that had existed before Valley of Fire State Park was established.

Apart from the precious carvings, the place astounds with its geology and startles with its human history. Mouse’s Tank is a natural basin. In the desert where water is scarce, the ability to preserve and store this resource becomes vital. Mouse’s Tank that collects rain water has played a pivotal role in the human history of the area for centuries.

History. Yet the name of the place has nothing to do with its functionality. Instead, Mouse’s Tank owns its name to a Southern Paiute Indian renegade known as Little Mouse. The Indian used the region as a hideout in the 1890s after he presumably killed two prospectors and committed other crimes in the area.

TIP: The Mouse’s Tank area has a parking lot, restrooms, and a picnic shelter. Thus, be sure to visit this part of the Valley of Fire if you need a short break.

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Rainbow Vista

As you continue driving along the main road, a place full of colorful sandstone formations, another epic landmark you ought to visit in the Valley of Fire, comes into view. Welcome to Rainbow Vista where the multicolors rocks stretch out as far as the eye can see! With such outstanding natural beauty around, no wonder, the place is often used for wedding photoshoots.

TIP: Similarly, make use of a small parking lot (although it gets packed fast), restrooms, and a picnic area nearby if you need a break. 

Fire Canyon/Silica Dome

Take a short detour and visit a different area of Valley of Fire State Park. After you pass Rainbow Vista, turn right and merge onto Fire Canyon Road. Your effort will be greatly rewarded in just a few minutes when marvelous views of the red sandstone appear on the horizon.

TIP: Have enough of the panoramic vistas and want to stretch your legs? Explore the numerous canyons and rock formations, including the famous Silica Dome. This pastel formation is one of the greatest examples of a deposit made out of almost pure silica. 

Fire Wave 

The stunning Fire Wave is one of the most popular natural landmarks to visit in Valley of Fire State Park and for a reason. Brimming with the colors, raging from red, yellow, pink, beige, and white, and swirling stripes, this Nevada’s bucket list destination is out of this world. A district shape that reminds of a wave adds extra magic to the already surreal surroundings. Visit this farther section of Valley of Fire State Park and let your senses explode. 

TIP: The Fire Wave sits at the end of the Fire Wave Trail

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White Domes

The final destination to visit at the far end of Valley of Fire State Park is the multicolored White Domes. Home to the longest slot canyon in the park, iconic white sandstone formations, and panoramic desert vistas, the place is also responsible for construction of the park’s road.

History. The necessary of the more convenient travel through the park arouse with shooting of movie “The Professionals” in 1966. Eventually, crowds of outdoor adventures found their way to the iconic White Domes.

TIP: The White Domes day use area sits at the end of White Domes Road. On top of the astounding surroundings and an easy trail that loops about the area, it offers a parking lot, restrooms, and a picnic area. Many visit this part of Valley of Fire State Park first and explore the surrounding areas, including the Fire Wave, on foot from here. 

White Domes Road

Although White Domes Road is not a completely new attraction at this point, the area deserves a separate mentioning. This scenic drive with ample roadside stops and a few parking lots to take in the views tops the list of Nevada’s spectacular routes. Stretching out for 5.5 miles, it allows you to see a lot even during a short visit to the Valley of Fire. 

Seven Sisters

It’s time to head back down White Domes Road and drive toward the East Entrance. The first place you must visit once back on Valley of Fire Highway is Seven Sisters. A solitary group of seven tall, red boulders looks rather odd surrounded by the sandy desert and no other rocks around.

History. Interestingly, the lonely Seven Sisters once were part of the closest to them red sandstone formation. Merciless erosion, however, stripped away the surrounding deposits, separating the rocks and sparing only several sections of the original solid structure.

The rock towers, however, won’t live here in complete solitude forever. Multiple “blow holes” on the surface of the formations forecast their total destruction that will happen in hundreds of years.

TIP: The site sits near the paved road. A small parking lot, a few picnic tables, and restrooms are nestled close to the towers. Furthermore, the open area with the towering rocks in the background allures photographers and romanic couples. The latter often choose this location for their wedding photoshoots. 

The Cabins

The historic Cabins is the next places to visit in Valley of Fire State Park. The landmark nestles near Valley of Fire Highway, not far from the East Entrance. Not authentic to the area, the structures appeared in the park in the 1930s. The Civilian Conservation Corps built them to provide a temporary shelter for travelers of the Arrowhead Trail. Today, the Cabins serve as a picnic area. 

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Clark Memorial 

Don’t expect to find many examples of human intervation in the desert during your visit to Valley of Fire State Park. The area cherishes first of all the nature with its remarkable formations. The Clark Memorial, however, deserves at least a short visit to remind you once again how strangely beautiful and dangerous the Valley of Fire can be.

History. John J. Clark was a sergeant of the New York Cavalry when he was honorably discharged. Once retired, the man emigrated to Southern California. One day traveling from Bakersfield to Salt Lake City on his buckboard, he stopped in the Valley of Fire. Some historians insists that Clark was looking for water, but never succeeded at finding it. Eventually, he crawled under his buckboard and died, presumably from thirst. His body was found a few days later, on June 30, 1915. 

Elephant Rock

The last destination to visit in Valley of Fire State Park (the very first one for those who access the park from the East Entrance) is photographic Elephant Rock. The deposits of sand not only created a large mountain-like formation here, but formed it into a distinct shape of an elephant.

TIP: The structure is visible from the road. Side-road parking on Valley of Fire Highway, however, is limited, which certainly adds some inconveniences to your visit. Therefore, you’re better off parking in a parking lot near the entrance and walking to the spectacular rock formation. 

The Best Hikes in Valley of Fire State Park

Hikers have the best time of their lives in Valley of Fire State Park. The area entices not only with its splendid colors and shapes, but also some of the best trails in the stare. With that said, a visit to the Valley of Fire can’t be complete without these favorite hikes. 

Fire Wave Trail 

The 1.5-mile round-trip Fire Wave Trail, the only way to get to the astounding Fire Wave, surprises with a plethora of natural shades and the largest sandstone formations with the red swirling stripes you’ve ever seen. The trailhead sits right across the road from parking lot #3.

White Domes Loop Trail

The White Domes Loop Trail runs for 1.25 miles, traversing a slot canyon and an open desert area. The scenic hike suits both beginners and advance hikers. 

Mouse’s Tank Trail 

The Mouse’s Tank Trail is quite short. It stretches out for approximately 0.4 miles one way. The amount of things to see and visit during this short excursion in Valley of Fire State Park, however, far exceeds its distance. The place allures first of all the history buffs interested in the ancient petroglyphs.  

Rainbow Vista Trail 

A sea of colors unfolds along the 1-mile Rainbow Vista Trail. Even if you don’t prioritize hiking during your visit to the Valley of Fire, stop at a parking lot and enjoy the natural “painting” from here. 

Pastel (Pink) Canyon Trail 

It can be hard to find the Pastel Canyon Trail, or the Pink Canyon Trail, if it’s your first visit and you have no clue what to do in the Valley of Fire. The 2-mile round-trip trail (can be shorter or longer depending on how far you want to hike) haven’t made onto official map of the park yet. The frequent visitors of the Valley of Fire, however, claim that it’s one of the most scenic areas in the region. 

TIP: The trailhead nestles near Wash #5. Similarly, you can park in the parking lot #3, visit the Fire Wave, and walk down to the wash and eventually one of the hidden gems of the Valley of Fire. 

State Park, Nevada - Roads and Destinations
State Park, Nevada - Roads and Destinations

The Most Photographed Places to Visit in Valley of Fire State Park

  • Elephant Rock. The sandstone elephant gathers crowds of photographers that visit the Valley of Fire just to capture its unique beauty.
  • Arch Rock. The remarkable shape of Arch Rock and easy accessibility make it one of the most epic and convenient natural landmarks to photograph in the Valley of Fire.  
  • Fire Wave. Many visit Valley of Fire State Park just to capture the mesmerizing swirling stripes and splendid shapes of the Fire Wave. The natural attraction is indisputably one of the most photographed places in the area. You will understand why when you visit the Valley of Fire in person and see the Fire Wave with your own eyes. 
  • Fire Cave/Winstone Arch. Located inside a wave tunnel in the sandstone, the isolated cave puts the photographers to work. On top of its secluded location, the place is so tiny that you need to get creative to photograph it. 
  • Rainbow Vista. The vibrant colors and remarkable shapes are the main reasons to visit the Valley of Fire. The natural hues look even more profound at Rainbow Vista, home to the multicolored sandstone formations. You can spend the entire day photographing these shades and shapes and still need another visit to the Valley of Fire. This time, you can even leave your shooting gear stored in your hotel room. All you come back for it to verify that your camera didn’t make any mistakes the day before by saturating the natural colors. Believe it or not, the pastel hues in the Valley of Fire are indeed too remarkable to believe your own eyes.  
  • Slot Canyon of the White Domes. The excellent desert views, the red and yellow terrain, towering walls of the slot canyon… Do you need any other reasons to visit and photograph the White Domes, one of the favorite areas in the Valley of Fire? 

Visit Valley of Fires State Park: Map

Visit Valley of Fire: Where to Stay in and near the Park

Camping

If the desert inhabitants that roam in Valley of Fire State Park in search of food at dusk don’t scare you, consider extending your visit and spending a night here. The area offers 2 campgrounds with total of 72 units. While some of the campsites are primitive, others provide shaded tables, grills, water, and hookups for RV’s. To make your visit to the Valley of Fire even more enjoyable, opt for the sites with dump stations and showers.

No prior reservation is needed. All campsites work on a first-come, first-served basis. The campgrounds, however, impose a limit on number of days one can stay in the park. So you can’t visit the Valley of Fire and spend more than 14 nights here in a 30-day period.

Apart from the regular campsites, the area offers 3 group sites. Each of them accommodates up to 45 people. Prior reservation for these is, however, required. 

Places to Stay near Valley of Fire State Park

Let’s be honest, camping is not for everybody. Those who’d rather stay away from the dark sky dotted with bright stars and distant howls of coyotes, can visit some of the nearest cities to the Valley of Fire and stay overnight there before returning to the park the following day. 

Moapa Valley

Moapa Valley is the closest place to look for accommodation near Valley of Fire State Park.

  • North Shore Inn at Lake Mead. Affordable rooms, a seasonal pool, free WiFi and parking, and most important the great location for Valley of Fire State Park are guaranteed at the North Shore Inn.     

Las Vegas

Las Vegas sits approximately one hour away and works perfectly for a one- or multi-day visit to Valley of Fire State Park.  

  • Bally’s Las Vegas Hotel & Casino ($). Located on the Las Vegas Strip, Bally’s Las Vegas Hotel & Casino surprises with rather affordable accommodation near the Valley of Fire. Clean and cozy rooms along with a swimming pool and a restaurant certainly don’t disappoint. 
  • Mandalay Bay ($$$). For a luxurious stay, head over to Mandalay Bay. After an impactful visit to the Valley of Fire, hotel’s outdoor splash swimming pools complete with a real sand beach give a much-needed rest. Those who long for more epic views can stay inside their rooms and admire the Gambling Capital of the World from floor-to-ceiling windows. 

Visit Valley of Fire: Admission and Permits

Visit Valley of Fire State Park any time of the year, from dawn to dusk. Keep in mind, though, that the entrance is not free. The state charges $10 per vehicle for day use. Travelers from outside of the state who plan to add a visit to Valley of Fire State Park to their Nevada’s trip must pay $15 per vehicle per day.

Nevada’s campers pay $20 per vehicle per night, the day-use fee included. The non-Nevada travelers that long to extend their visit to the Valley of Fire and spend a night in the wilderness pay $25 per vehicle per night. The park charges extra $10 for sites with the utility hookups.

Planning to visit Valley of Fire State Park by bike? Your entrance fee comes to only $2 per bike.

Furthermore, the majority if not all hiking trails in the area don’t require a hiking permit.

Know before You Go: You must pay the fees at the entrance stations upon arrival. As an America the Beautiful pass holder, I wondered if I could visit Valley of Fire State Park, using the national parks’ pass. The answer is no. You must pay the fees that the State of Nevada charges for every visit to and camping at Valley of Fire State Park. 

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Visit Valley of Fire: Helpful Tips

Safety Tips to Follow During Your Visit to Valley of Fire

  • Drink plenty of water when visiting Valley of Fire State Park. The place nestles in the desert where temperatures can get too high. Drinking water to preserve your energy is crucial in this hostile environment.
  • Plan the whole day visit to Valley of Fire State Park. The gorgeous landscape and the remarkable sandstone formations will indeed keep you for that long. Thus, be sure to bring along lunch and snacks. There are no places to grab a bite in the park. 
  • Sunscreen should be your essential. Even a short visit to Valley of Fire State Park can take a toll on your skin. We’re talking about nasty sunburns here. So use the sunscreen, and a lot of it. 
  • Raincoat might come in handy when you visit Valley of Fire State Park in July or August. The afternoon rains prevail at this time. Thus, use waterproof layers unless you don’t mind feeling some desert moisture on your skin. 

Valley of Fire State Park’s Regulations to Comply with During Your Visit

  • Comply with Valley of Fire State Park’s hours and regulations during your visit. You must leave the park before it gets dark. Only campers with the camping permits are allowed in the area at night. 
  • Feel free to visit Valley of Fire State Park with your pets. Dogs are allowed on the majority of the trails in the park. Keep them on leash, though. 
  • Respect wildlife. Stay away and certainly don’t feed bighorn sheep if you happen to spot them during your visit to Valley of Fire State Park. Moreover, don’t harm smaller desert inhabitants, such as lizards, and keep an eye on snakes that abound in the desert.
  • No hiking permits are needed. Hike freely in Valley of Fire State Park. Once again, no hiking permits are required for most of the popular trails. 
  • Stay only on designated routes. Going off the designated areas is not allowed. Respect the park and protect its fragile structures.
  • Fires are permitted only in designated fireplaces. For more information, stop at the Visitor Center prior to venturing deeper into the park. 
  • Protect the historic artifacts and rock formations. Sadly, some visit Valley of Fire State Park, caring less about its unique natural and human history. It’s not uncommon to see absurd scribblings next to the ancient carvings. Stop before you start. Preserve the unique landscape and the petroglyphs of Valley of Fire Stare Park for other generations to visit and enjoy.      

Visit Valley of Fire: Frequently Asked Questions

Can you camp in Valley of Fire State Park?

Yes. Camping is allowed in Valley of Fire State Park. In fact, the area has 2 campgrounds with basic and more equipped campsites. On top of that, 3 group sites accommodate the parties of up to 45 people. Camping fees are paid upon arrival with the exception of the group sites that must be reserved in advance.

Can you use drones in Valley of Fire State Park?

No. You can’t visit Valley of Fire State Park with a drone. The majority of national and state parks are drone-free zones. Violators, if caught, must pay fines, imposed by the state or federation. 

Can you climb rocks in the Valley of Fire?

Yes and no. Rock climbing is permitted in designated areas only. You must restrain from climbing atop the most fragile sandstone formations such as Rock Arch.  

Can you use the America the Beautiful pass to enter the Valley of Fire?

No. The America the Beautiful pass ensures access to all national parks and the majority of national monuments. The Valley of Fire is a state park that doesn’t accept any annual national passes. 

What animals can you see in Valley of Fire State Park? 

You hardly see any wildlife in the area. If you’re lucky, you can spot a bighorn sheep during a day visit to Valley of Fire State Park. The animals roam freely throughout the park, but stay away from the visitors. The lizards soak up the desert sun and seem not to mind the intruders if left undisturbed. Both venomous and non-venomous snakes thrive in Valley of Fire State Park. At night, coyotes, bobcats, kit foxes and jackrabbits get out of their hideouts in search of food. 


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