For those coming from CA, it might be easier and faster to take Lovell Canyon road, then approach Red Rock Summit from the SW. This is the route described in the DPS guides.
From the intersection of routes 382 and 160 (west side of Pahrump), drive 29 miles east on rte 160, to the Lovell Canyon Road. Turn north on the paved Lovell Canyon Road and drive 7.7 miles. Turn right (east) on a dirt BLM road, and drive up as far as you can. (This road first goes straight for a short distance, then crosses a wash, curves radically NNE, then radically S, then heads east again, all within the first 0.25 miles!) Park and walk up the road to Red Rock Summit, where a marked trail leads east to Bridge. The first part of the trail is easy and easy to follow. However, once you hit the sandstone, watch for cairns.
The SW end of the Red Rock Summit road has deteriorated much since the DPS guide was issued, and I wouldn't drive my Subaru more than 1.5 miles up. A true high-clearance vehicle might be able to go 0.5 or so miles farther, but after that, there are extremely rough washouts in a few places. I saw some 4WD tracks, but probably from a short-wheelbase, HC jeep; I also saw lots of broken car parts and boulders with nasty scrapes.
Thanks Harlan. I put your comments into the text on the main page...with credit, of course.
The number you've listed for the NCA Visitors Center isn't the correct or direct one anymore. The correct number is 702-515-5350.
Thank you. I updated the info.
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.
Hopefully, you can update this page accordingly. I'll post this on the North Peak page as well, and I'll post a picture to both showing the trailhead as it currently looks.
The road is really rough. I definitely needed 4wd to get through in a few spots, and the old 4Runner I was in had higher clearance than just any stock SUV you see these days. Some people in Explorers were turning around. I'd recommend skid plates in addition to high clearance and 4wd, though I only scraped bottom once.
I'll also email CP for future editions of his book. I realize he was the original owner of this page, and it seems that the directions may be the ones he originally had since they closely match what is in his book.
I hiked up and down the road yesterday en route to and from Bridge Mountain: it looks like work has been done in the last year, as there seemed to be no spots where a 4wd would be needed (as opposed to a couple of years ago, when I recall it being a lot rougher). Holes filled in, washes smoothed out, boulders removed, etc. I saw a Subaru Forester at the trailhead. There were a couple of narrow spots that might prove tight for a full-size pickup. I think a regular SUV or small/mid-sized truck would have no problems, and no need to engage 4wd. Heavy weather over the winter and spring could caused fresh damage, however.
Drove the Rocky Gap Road this morning en route to Bridge Mountain - actually, a friend drove us up in his Land Rover. The road has deteriorated beyond anything I can remember, with HC + 4wd now essential.
What a shame. I was planning on taking this road come May, but from the sound of things it doesn't look like it'd be safe in my Subaru.