Maps show roads leading north and south out of Las Vegas to places with tons of elbow room. A loop around the Colorado River will put you within nearly a dozen spectacular red rock canyons including both the north and south rim of the Grand Canyon.
Grand Canyon, South Rim sunset
To keep congestion down, Park Service shuttles take visitors to view the most scenic sections of Zion’s twisted stone and sculpted spires. Zion’s 1920s era Zion-Mount Carmel tunnel leads up and out to the road for Brice or to the Grand Canyon. Freedonia marks Route 89 heading north.
You'll find all the elbow room you could ever want after you pass through a few little towns and take a die-straight road that makes a bee line for the north rim as it cuts through the desert sage and creosote bush of the Kaibab plateau. Forty miles of blacktop skirts the Vermilion Cliffs on the left, a plain to the canyon on the right, and makes for the open road to infinity ahead.
You leave the Grand Canyon and continue east beside the Vermilion Cliffs and enter Marble Canyon. Here it is worth a stop to see Lees Ferry and watch a trip outfitter provision their huge inflatable rafts for a 200 mile trip through the Grand Canyon on the Colorado River.
Antelope Slot Canyon
Another stop on a tour around the Colorado's canyons should be slot canyons of Page.
Take Antelope Pass at 6,533 feet elevation for the great views of the valley of the Colorado River and then enjoy a long downhill glide to Page where you might be thinking mirage when you see the enigmatic towers of the Navajo Power Plant on Route 98. They loom over Antelope Canyon, a wash that is dry most of the year but when Antelope Creek conveys huge amounts of flood water through the rocks during storms, they have carved out the most unusual rock formations in the hidden canyon.
South Rim Views
Grand Canyon North Rim Views
North Rim View
Lees Ferry, staging area for Grand Canyon Raft trips
Zion SP Utah
Travel Photographer Rain Rodolph photographing in Valley of Fire, SP Nevada
Antelope Slot Canyon
Grand Canyon, South Rim
From Page head back south along the Echo Cliffs to the Little Colorado River and then turn at Cameron to the plateau on Route 64 to the 7,400-foot high South Rim of the Grand Canyon.
So many viewpoints, so little time; Mather point first thing in the morning has great sunrise views. The west Rim Trail runs for eight miles along the canyon’s edge and leads to great viewpoints, much of it paved and wheel chair accessible.
South again on 89 takes you through the ancient stone pueblos of The Wupatki National Monument, the 11th century homes of the Anasazi and Sinagua cultures. The road passes through the black volcano fields of Sunset Crater where eruptions in the 11th Century threw tons of volcanic stone that blanketed the area driving out the ancient farmers who left their stone buildings.
The Grand Canyon is near enough to Las Vegas to offer the glitz of Vegas as a welcome break from traveling in the wilderness of the high deserts. (277 Miles to south Rim)
You might want to balance a few days of excitement in Las Vegas, however, with a return to nature and listen to the wind singing through the spires of Zion National Park, see the majesty of sunset at the Grand Canyon, or walk through the quiet forests of Ponderosa Pine on the Kaibab Plateau.
The frontier town of Williams at 6,700 feet along the old Route 66 provides some nostalgia which includes lunch in a 1950s diner. The Grand Canyon Railway runs steam and Diesel trains twice daily out of Williams to the Grand Canyon.
The road to Las Vegas runs right over the top of 762-foot high Hoover Dam. To the right, Lake Mead and two years worth of Colorado River water bordered by 550 miles of shoreline, below, a concrete base 660 feet thick that took 4.5 million Cubic Yards of concrete to build, and to the left, Colorado River water headed for the agricultural fields of Arizona and California.
Soon you can be back in Las Vegas enjoying the sumptuous buffets at the Mirage,
|Steam train Rides
in Williams Arizona
Stone ruins near the volcano of Sunset Crater
Bridge over the top of the Hoover Dam
Grand Canyon, Self Drive Tours of the Grand Canyon
Grand Canyon, North Rim
Grand Canyon of Arizona
Grand Canyon South Rim
Williams Arizona on Route 66
Flying into Phoenix or Las Vegas for a Grand Canyon trip
Valley of Fire State Park
North on Route 15, the Valley of Fire State Park near the shores of Lake Mead is well named with its rocks that glow red and a sun that can burn like fire. Snappy dry Mojave Desert air keeps it interesting but still Nevada’s oldest park has few visitors touring its bubbles of red rock set against a cobalt blue sky and its twisted arches of red sandstone that frame distant cliffs.
Most travelers speed through on their way to Utah's Zion and Bryce Canyons to the north.
The Grand Canyon is near enough to Las Vegas to offer the glitz of Vegas as a welcome break from a rental car trip in the wilderness of the high deserts. From Las Vegas it is a 277 Mile drive to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is near enough to Las Vegas to make Las Vegas a good base for Grand Canyon trips. ,Car rentals are plentiful and reasonable and mid week hotel rates are a bargain.
From Las Vegas it is a 277 Mile drive to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. A driving trip around the Colorado River to both the North and South Rims of the Grand Canyon is possible from Las Vegas.