#1. "RE: Vegas area in June..." In response to Reply # 0 Tue 30-Apr-13 02:37 AM by Wingman
I would highly recommend Valley of Fire State Park, east of Lost Wages. Not terribly large but a fascinating area to wander in, especially the drive into the interior of the Park from the visitor's center. It is a bit of Red Rock Utah in Nevada.
Red Rock Recreation Area just West of the city has some nice trails, but heavily used -- not much solitude there. There's a loop Road North of the city that runs up toward Mt Charleston. I haven't driven that one for many years but have good memories of it.
Don't forget that there are high roads in DVNP that are MUCH cooler than the valley floor. The Wildrose road has great views and walks, as well as having the Skidoo and Aguereberry Point roads (both dirt but fine for passenger cars) running off to the East. We've spent some quality time up in those areas with great shooting.
#2. "RE: Vegas area in June..." In response to Reply # 0
Neuville, near Quebec City, CA
I've been to Death Valley twice (including the last Nikonians Spring workshop) and to Valley of Fire three times.
Although DV offers grand vistas and geological unique curiosities, I prefer much more VF simply because the colors are so rich, you don't spend hours driving, many intimate landscapes are available for great photos, etc.
I have not yet had the time to select and post-process my photos from my visit in VF last March, and I have only PP a few of my March DV workshop. However, you can compare from my photos from previous trips:
It takes about 1:15 to go to VF from Vegas via the highway. However, I strongly suggest to use the East entrance via Lake Mead Park (nice photo opportunities along the road) and come back via the highway at night.
#4. "RE: Vegas area in June..." In response to Reply # 0 Sat 04-May-13 08:26 AM by Robman3
West of Santa Monica, US
I've made the drive to GCNP and back from Vegas in one day (Condors hang around South Rim beginning in May, after wintering at Vermillion Cliffs) but I also will drive to Tioga Pass and back in one day from the West Side of Los Angeles, so perhaps I'm not the best judge of road versus time shooting.
VOF and Red Rock, both amazing as noted above.
Precautions, too hot means the desert around Vegas will be fairly close to Death Valley in temperature.
Make an emergency plan in case of a break down and have provisions as a precaution of being stranded. Highly unlikely but, not something to be short of resources on if there is a flash flood, and or some other unforeseen circumstance. Cell phone won't link up a tower, who knows.
I believe the rule of thumb, is 2 liters of water, every 20 minutes if out hiking, give or take and the rangers love to caution with the story about the German tourist who grabbed 2 liters and told his friends to meet him at the entrance of Golden Canyon, as he started down from the Zaberiskie overlook. He never made it.
I'm still pondering another couple of nights in Death Valley, come June after all of the graduations to shoot the heat waves, both in stills and video.
I was stationed at Nellis during the service, we frequented both Red Rock and VOF, with, um, various imbibements of the day, spending the night at times.
Not to chase bad mojo but, if you are in a wash, on a trail etc. after the sun goes down, do watch for rattlesnakes not common, but once it cools down they are there, they lie waiting for Kangaroo rats and such.
I tend to look for them (snakes) after dark, usually in lower lying areas of the road where they like to park, once the blistering temperature abates.
Also, dips and cross wash bottoms where the foliage and grass would be from the winter growth. Not much of that this year and June is past prime for grasses.
#7. "RE: Vegas area in June..." In response to Reply # 0
Mission Viejo, US
Hi Rick, Within just a couple hours north are several National Parks in southern Utah. Zion (being the closest) and Bryce Canyon. Zion can be a bit of traffic jam during the summer months but still beautiful. Zion Canyon itself will be shuttle bus only, but you can skip the canyon if you wish and drive through the park and out the east side, (where there will be a lot fewer people around) and then continue on to Bryce. There is also Kolob Canyon (part of Zion) but accessed via a separate entrance just a wee bit farther north. Also much less populated in my experience.