Instead, we headed to First Creek Trail. It's just over 4 miles farther down Hwy 159 from the entrance to the park. All of the parking lots along the highway were pretty crowded, but we easily found a spot at the First Creek Trailhead lot.
This trail is marked Easy, according to the sign at the trailhead, or Easy-Moderate, according to the Red Rock Canyon visitor's guide. The sign at the entrance also says it is a trail system, which is pretty evident when you enter the trail and find a few different options of paths to choose.
I think we decided on the most traveled one, since it was very well defined with trail markers indicating the boundary of the initial stretch. It didn't last long, though, and soon enough the trail markers were gone and we were faced finding our own way along the various well worn paths.
We walked along, listening for the sound of water of the nearby creek and were rewarded with a little pool.
It probably won't be there for too much longer this season. The creek is the highest January through March.
We went off trail for a bit and found this really cool rock formation.
Jeff, of course, couldn't resist climbing up into it.
The views were stunning!
We found our way back down to the main trail and continued onward to try to find the beginning of the creek.
Along the way, we found this really flat rock, and I couldn't resist a couple yoga poses.
Not too much farther up the trail, we climbed down some boulders to find the creek.
It's probably not the actual beginning, but it was beautiful all the same. We hung out there for a few minutes while we ate a snack and enjoyed the sound of rushing water.
I explored down along the creek a little more.
I'm really glad that we walked farther along the trail to find this part of the creek. The views and sounds were incredible.
We headed back to the car, but not without snapping one final picture.
It was definitely an afternoon well spent! Next time, I think we'll bring Sallie along. She would probably love it!
Details about the trail:
Located on State Route 159 about 2.6 miles south of the exit of the 13-Mile Scenic Drive
Easy-Moderate | 300 ft elevation gain | 3 miles round trip | 2 hour hike
I would definitely recommend this trail to anyone looking for a relatively easy trail in Red Rock without the hassle of going into the park. While it isn't too strenuous, there isn't much shade, so be sure to wear sunscreen and bring plenty of water.