By Valarie Kuschel
Even before the pandemic, Rock Rock Canyon National Conservation Area has always been a serene getaway for locals and tourists alike. The stunning views, exhilarating trails and bewitching desert landscape attract thousands of visitors every month.
Since the lockdown began, people across the valley have flocked to Red Rock in unprecedented numbers. The tranquility of the canyon serves as a much needed reprieve from the mundane schedule we keep indoors.
In response to the increased traffic, the Bureau of Land Management will begin requiring reservations to enter the Scenic Drive. Beginning Nov. 3, you will need to book a timed entry through recreation.gov to enter the Scenic Drive. Reservations can be made up to 30 days in advance, and cost $2 a ticket. As of right now, bicycles will not require reservations.
The reservation system highlights the growing need for a multiuse paved path outside of the Scenic Loop. Thankfully, with the help of our partners, portions of the Red Rock Legacy Trail are slated for construction within the next two years.
The Red Rock Legacy Trail will be similar to the River Mountain Loop Trail at Lake Mead. Once completed, it will loosely follow the 159 Scenic Byway through Red Rock Canyon.
This transition to a reservation system will be a difficult adjustment for many locals. If you have questions, Save Red Rock is happy to help. Reach out to our team to learn more.
The writer is communications director at Save Red Rock.