OverviewNorth Peak, once considered the highest sandstone peak in Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area (NCA), was determined in the most recent survey to actually be 23 feet or so shorter than its much more impressive nearby neighbor, Mt. Wilson. Despite its imposing 2000 foot vertical east face and the fact that it is one of the highest peaks in the NCA, the mountain is often overshadowed by its more impressive neighbors, Bridge Mountain, immediately south, and the monolithic Mt. Wilson, which lies a couple of miles south of Bridge Mountain.
The extraordinary views from the summit extend across the entirety of Red Rock and to Las Vegas and Lake Mead beyond.
Although a number of possible routes to the summit exist, the most popular is the well-traveled class 1 & 2 route from Red Rock Summit.
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From Charleston Blvd. and I-215 in Las Vegas, take Charleston Blvd. (Highway 159) west for about 5 miles until you reach the entrance to Red Rock Canyon NCA. Once inside the park, follow the main loop road to the Willow Springs turnoff (just before mile marker 8). Follow the paved road for about 1 mile until it turns into a dirt road. Although passenger cars can continue for another 1/2 mile or so, the road quickly deteriorates and a high clearance vehicle, at minimum, will be necessary for the duration. Continue on the dirt road for about 5 miles until you reach Red Rock Summit, which is an obvious pass between limestone ridges. On the left, you will find adequate parking for 5-6 vehicles and a sign designating the trailhead.
On 7-22-12, Bob Sihler added:
"The driving directions on the page make it sound as though it is about 6.5 miles from the Scenic Drive to Red Rock summit, but I clocked it a week ago at 5.1. Also, there is no longer a sign at Red Rock Summit.
I mention this because there is a possibility that not knowing it could get someone unfamiliar with the location in trouble. Because the sign is not there, one might pass Red Rock Summit at 5.1 miles and think it is the beginning of yet another dip before climbing to the true summit 1.4 miles later. The danger is that less than a mile from RR Summit, the road becomes so nasty that it would be difficult for someone in a stock SUV or truck to get through, and a stubborn or foolish person might get stuck or incur serious vehicular damage in trying to continue to where he thinks the trailhead will be."
Red TapeA $5 entrance fee is required to enter Red Rock NCA.
When To ClimbThe mountain can be climbed any time of the year, although winter snows can make the dirt road to Red Rock Summit virtually impassable to vehicles. If you hike up the dirt road to the trailhead, the rest of the route is perfectly doable in winter. If attempting routes other than the one from Red Rock Summit in the winter, icy exposure on the sandstone cliffs, ledges and whatnot can quickly end a good outing and is to be taken seriously.
CampingBackcountry camping is allowed above 5000 ft (with permit). Although there are no established camping areas within the RRCNCA scenic loop area, the Red Rock Canyon Campground is nearby and accepts walk-ins. To get to the campground, head east two miles on Hwy 159 from the park's entrance station to Moenkopi Road and turn south. The campground entrance is located one mile south of Hwy 159 on Moenkopi Road.
- Red Rock Cyn.
Red Rock Cyn. National Conservancy Area.
BLM website, Misc. info.
- Panorama from the summit of North Peak
360 degree, interactive panorama from the summit of North Peak.
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