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mount charleston

Mount Charleston

Drive time from Las Vegas strip: 1 hour
For winter warriors who think Vegas is nothing but dry desert, imagine instead ponderosa pines, white firs, and quaking aspens. It’s true — you can ski, snowboard, snowshoe, and do other snow things just one hour outside of Vegas. Mount Charleston starts getting snowfall as early as October and you’ll find higher-elevation trails with patches of snow well into spring. During the snowmelt, waterfalls flow over dramatic limestone cliffs and through the canyons, all easily accessible by trails.

Mount Charleston is also a popular area for hiking in the summer, with 53 miles of trails and temperatures about 20 degrees cooler than the Las Vegas Valley. Peak baggers also love it — Charleston Peak itself is the tallest peak in Southern Nevada, with several other peaks to bag in the area as well. For less-strenuous hiking, Cathedral Rock is a beautiful and beginner-friendly hike with stunning views of the Spring Mountains range at the top, and the Raintree Trail takes you to the oldest living bristlecone pine in Nevada, clocking in at over 3,000 years old (though some think it might be more like 4,000).

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