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Juniper Draw Trail, NV

Guide 1 Triplog  0 Topics
  0 of 5 
NV > Vegas
9 1 0
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Difficulty 0.5 of 5
Distance Loop 3 miles
Trailhead Elevation 4,813 feet
Accumulated Gain 284 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1.5-2 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 4.42
Interest Historic
Backpack No
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
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9  2013-10-05 autumnstars
Author autumnstars
author avatar Guides 25
Routes 19
Photos 562
Trips 1,391 map ( 11,424 miles )
Age Female Gender
Location Las Vegas, NV
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Apr, Oct, Mar, May
Seasons   Late Autumn to Late Spring
Sun  4:15am - 7:02pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

Gorge on the Scenery
by autumnstars

The Juniper Draw Trail traces a mellow loop around the bottom of Cathedral Gorge. This trail provides excellent up close and personal views of the formations. The trail is very easy to follow, and offers no great physical challenge - the reward is in the intimate views of your surroundings.

Cathedral Gorge State Park was designated as one of four original state parks in 1935 to preserve the badlands-style geology. Silt, clay, and volcanic ash are being continuously eroded by rain to form towers, spires, narrow slots, and cliffs. The trail makes an easy loop around the bottom of a valley surrounded by these formations. Start from the trailhead and simply follow the trail. Once you loop through the valley and start to head back toward the CCC water tower, a signed spur trail will take you to Miller Point. This spur takes you up a few sets of metal stairs to an overlook of the valley. Once up top, walk down the road a ways to the short trail (~0.5 mi) for Eagle View - it is by far the better view. From here, back-track to resume the loop and head toward the tower.

In the 30's, the CCC built picnic and overlook shade structures, a stone restroom, and stone water tower. The water tower had to be decommissioned after only a few years, when mineral deposits from the groundwater rendered it inoperable. The trail visits all of these projects, including better interpretive signs than at some national parks.

Behind the day use area, there are a number of slot canyons in the clay that you can crawl and/or squeeze through. Some are named and signed, and even have planks and ropes to allow further access. The first few Europeans to explore the valley thoroughly called these "caves," and the name stuck, even though they are open to the sky and not true caves. Great area to explore.

Resume the loop by hiking back toward the campground. This portion of the trail has small signs describing plants and animals along the way.

The cryptobiotic soil crusts here are very well-developed. Be sure to stay on trail or travel in the washes. Use ropes and planks found in the caves at your own risk.

Check out the Official Route and Triplog.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2013-10-09 autumnstars
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$
    Permits are purchased upon entry to individual parks at a standard entrance fee of $7 to $12 per day with a $2.00 discount to Nevada residents. more info

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To hike
    From Las Vegas, drive north on US-93 for approximately 170 miles. One mile past the intersection of US-93 and NV-319 (approx. 20 miles after passing through Caliente), you will see a sign for Cathedral Gorge State Park. Turn left into the park, and follow signs to the campground. Trail head is behind the fancy flush bathroom.
    page created by autumnstars on Oct 09 2013 10:36 am
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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