Boondocking at Lake Mead National Recreation Area and camping at Valley of Fire State Park are one of our favorite places to enjoy the Nevada USA desert near Las Vegas!
We got stuck in the sand at Lake Mead and were so grateful for the group of overlanders from Germany who also camped out nearby at the Lake. They helped us out to get our van out of the loose sand. Other than that it was a very peaceful couple of days of dry camping at Lake Mead and at the nearby Valley of Fire State Park where we also enjoyed a couple great hikes.
Boondocking at Lake Mead National Recreation Area is free with an annual America The Beautiful Pass and Valley of Fire State Park has first-come, first-served only sites.
We loved hiking in Bryce Canyon National Park on the Peekaboo Loop Trail. The trail is listed as a strenuous hike due to changes in elevation from the trailhead to the canyon floor. The loop is 5.5 miles long and moderately trafficked.
The hike leads to a landscape that looks like out of a fairy tale where hikers can admire multiple rock windows, hoodoo spires and incredibly beautiful rock formations ranging from pink and apricot to white and brown shades. Check out the National Park page for more info: https://www.nps.gov/brca/index.htm
Come explore with us portions of the Bright Angel Trail, South Kaibab Trail and Grandview Trail! Hiking in the Grand Canyon National Park is one of the most mesmerizing ways to explore this majestic natural wonder.
We hoped to get a backpacking permit for a multi-day loop hike but even after 3 attempts we did not make the lottery.
Since one of us already had been to the North Rim we decided to explore the South Rim this time and do a few different day hikes on the Bright Angel Trail, South Kaibab Trail and Grandview Trail. And of course every morning we went to the rim to watch the wonders of the sunrise over the canyon, which is a magical special experience for sure.
One of our bucket list items on our trip through Utah was to camp out at the incredible Valley of the Gods which is located in the Mexican Hat area.
A few years ago we discovered the Valley of the Gods while driving through the area and were so taken by its beauty that we were looking forward to coming back one day and spending a few days of free camping in the midst of the stunning monoliths, pinnacles and rock formations that were eroded by wind and water over time.
Since the Valley of the Gods is owned by the Bureau of Land Management, which is the administration that oversees public land, wild camping is free and open to the public: https://www.blm.gov/visit/search-deta…
This means dry camping without any amenities, carry in and carry out and leaving no trace is an important part of wild camping on this public land. Since Monument Valley is only a short drive away we combined a visit to these iconic desert landscapes and enjoyed a couple relaxing nights under the stars. The night sky is incredible out there and one can see the Milky Way with the bare eye. A great place for night photography for sure. The gravel and dirt road through the Valley of the Gods is a 17 mile long loop which is great for mountain biking, hiking or taking a scenic drive.
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Music credit for this video: Sweet Fingerpicking 10 by Oerjan Karlsson, Epidemic Sound