Charleston Peak National Scenic Trail

Las Vegas, Nevada 89130

Charleston Peak National Scenic Trail

Charleston Peak National Scenic Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"A day hike in the Spring Mountains along a high ridge with spectacular alpine views. Use caution if you attempt this hike in late spring or early summer: The higher sections of the trail may be covered with snow, especially the North Loop near Charleston Peak.

It may not be possible to traverse the steep slopes safely without technical climbing equipment and experience. You’ll be hiking this loop counterclockwise. The North Loop Trail climbs steeply north up a drainage as it heads toward the crest of the range. A beautiful forest of ponderosa pine and quaking aspen gives way to a more open view in an old burn on the southwest slopes of Mummy Mountain."

Charleston Peak National Scenic Trail Trip Reports

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If you really love to hike, are in good shape, and are anywhere near Vegas this one is a must. We completed this hike with the full loop, starting up the south loop and down the north loop and trail canyon. If you do this route realize that the hike down the North loop is much longer and more precarious than the south loop you came up. We did this as an over night backpack trip and it was well worth the trip. They views from just about anywhere on the trail are amazing. Whats great about this hike is there isn't anything techincal about it just lots of elevation gain and beautiful scenary. In October the weather was great except for the 60mph wind as we neared the summit, didn't ruin the trip but made it tough. This moutnain has loomed in the distance from me for years and it was absolutley amazing to be standing on the summit looking down on dirty Ole Vegas.
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This ascent to the peak will take you about 6 hours to hike up and about 3 hours to hike back down on the shortest routes.

I recommend Trail Canyon/North Loop to the peak. The trailhead for this route is in Trail Canyon, located near the west end of Kyle Canyon and State Road 157 left off on Echo Road for about a half mile. Hike up Trail Canyon two mile to the junction of the North Loop trail. The North Loop trail is about six miles to the peak. Expect a 20° temperature differance with high winds at the peak. Not accessible during the winter months. The month of May though September would be the time to go to the peak. At the peak you will find an existing green metal ammo box on a pole with a log book within. Don''t be surprise to find hikers at the peak.... it very popular site. By the time you get done with this cache your feet and legs should be worn out.

If you do plan to hike I would suggest a few things.

Two liter''s of water.
Energy bars or equivalent
Some fruit
candy bar for a treat

It''s a long hike and you will need to sustain yourself. You don''t want to be zonked out at the Peak. Remember to drink while ascending the Peak to avoid the chances of altitude sickness. Before descending remember to cinch up your hiking boots to reduce the occurance of blisters on your feet.

Although the Trail Canyon to North Peak and back is the shortest route, the best by far is to do the complete loop (North to South). There is a big contrast between the two loops. The three miles of The Meadows is a warm inviting place to rest.

Something to look for when descending the South Loop is about three hundred yards from the Peak is the wreckage of the 1955 C-54 military transport plane crash.

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This is an incredibly beautiful area very close to Vegas. The entire loop(south loop ascending and north loop descending) is about 22 miles and took us 9 hours. Excellent trail without a lot of markers or people make for a great hike. There are Bristlecones and other fantasticly sculpted trees and cliffs, especially on the north loop. The loops don't start and end at the same place so the last mile is pavement. Fortunatly, we got a ride with a Great Samaritan. Our feet were pretty tender by then.

Charleston Peak National Scenic Trail Photos

Trail Information

Las Vegas
Nearby City
Trail Type
Skill Level
10 hours
Summer through Fall
Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, Spring Mountain National Recreation Area, 4701 N. Torrey Pines Dr., Las Vegas, NV 89130-2301; (702) 515-5400;
Local Contacts
USGS Charleston Peak
Local Maps

Trail Log