Las Vegas Trail Running Scene
Are you new to trail running and don't know where to start? Want to get into trail racing and want a group to connect with for tips and pointers? Maybe you're new to Las Vegas (or visiting!) and looking for a great group of trail runners to run with. Whatever you're looking for, our group runs will have what you need!
If you're looking to go out on your own or just want to learn more about the trails in the Las Vegas valley, take a look at the various trail systems below. Las Vegas has a plethora — “Jefe, what is a plethora?” — of trail systems offering a variety of runs from flat and fast to steep, high-elevation trails.
For the most up-to-date group runs, including spur-of-the-moment get togethers, join our Facebook group at TrailRunning.vegas by Desert Dash.
Where We Run
There are many places in the Las Vegas valley — both official and unofficial — that are amazing for trail running, but these are our favorites.
A world-famous mountain bike park, Bootleg Canyon is in the River Mountain Range and includes Red Mountain and Black Mountain (not to be confused with Sloan Canyon's Black Mountain). Containing a wide assortment of geological features from volcanic rock, Bootleg Canyon offers some spectacular rockscapes of various colors, along with stunning vistas of Lake Mead, Boulder City, and Las Vegas.
Part of the Red Rock National Conservation Area, Cottonwood Valley occupies the southern end of the Red Rock NCA. Nestled up against Mount Potosi and the Red Rock Escarpment — stunning sandstone cliffs created by the Keystone Thrust Fault approximately 66 million years ago — Cottonwood Valley is a 13-mile stretch of scenic desert near southwest Las Vegas.
Primarily used by Cowboy Trail Rides, the Cowboy Trail system is extremely technical with lots of elevation changes. More information coming soon.
Created by the Hoover Dam in the 1930s, Lake Mead is largest man-made reservoir in the United States and is a popular weekend destination in the summer for locals. More information coming soon.
The tallest peak in Southern Nevada at 11,916 ft and the 8th tallest peak in Nevada, the Mt. Charleston trails are a great way to escape the summer heat as well as get some elevation training. More information coming soon.
Red Rock Canyon
One of the most popular outdoors attractions in Las Vegas, the Red Rock Canyon scenic area has stunning scenery and great trails. More information coming soon.
The creation of at least eight volcanoes millions of years ago (all of which are now extinct), Sloan Canyon is just shy of 50,000 acres and contains a staggering number of petroglyphs (rock engravings). Containing the northern end of the McCullough Mountain Range, including the North McCullough Wilderness Area, Sloan Canyon is home to some of the best climbs within easy access of most of the Las Vegas Valley.
Twilight Zone Trails
A little-known trail system in the northern part of the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, the Twilight Zone Trails offers about 13 miles of relatively flat singletrack. More information coming soon.
Sitting on unused land owned by the county, the Union Hills trail system has a handful trails with a good mixture of flat and fast trail and short, steep climbs and is well-suited for mid-week runs for those living in the area.