Start your time at Valley of Fire in the Visitor’s Center. Here you’ll find useful information, books and exhibits on Valley of Fire and the surrounding area.
Scattered throughout 42,000 acres of rough desert floor, delight in the brilliant formations of eroded sandstone as well as unique plant and animal life during your visit to Valley of Fire State Park.
Right outside the Visitor’s Center is Balanced Rock. Take a short hike up Balanced Rock for exceptional views of the sandstone formations that surround the park.
A must see sandstone formation and a great photo opportunity, Arch Rock has formed over many millennia by strong winds and rain slowly washing away the materials that hold its sand grains together.
Atlatls were once used as weapons by the Indians, and can be found carefully carved into Atlatl Rock by the ancient Indians to this day. However the petroglyphs of atlatls aren’t the only rock carvings in the area; there are other outstanding petroglyphs around Atlatl Rock, so keep your eyes open.
The Beehives sandstone formations are the perfect example of unique designs that can be created by nature and an excellent representation of geologic cross-bedding. Journey along a short path that winds through the dunes for a closer look at the grooved lines going in different directions and the layers of beds which represent dissimilar layers of silt deposited throughout time.
Colorful logs washed into Valley of Fire around 225 million years ago have lost their organic elements and been completely replaced by minerals. The petrified logs sit close to the road and are safely fenced off for everyone to enjoy.
Named after Southern Paiute Indian renegade “Little Mouse” who used Valley of Fire as a hideout in the 1890s after he was accused of killing two prospectors and other crimes in the area, Mouse’s Tank is a natural basin in the rock where water collects after each rainfall. For those who wish to journey down the half-mile round trip trail that leads to Mouse’s Tank, excellent examples of prehistoric petroglyphs can be seen along the way to the basin.
Rainbow Vista is a viewpoint in Valley of Fire State Park where the road reaches the top of the low ridge revealing a vast area of colorful rocks that stretch for miles. With panoramic views of the canyons, domes, towers, ridges and valleys, it’s the perfect photo opportunity.
Within Valley of Fire State Park, the earth’s forces have caused thousands of feet of surface rock to fold, break, and in some areas push several miles away from their original location. See how erosion has worn away the top of one great fold, exposing sharp rocks and creating numerous canyons.
The White Domes are sandstone formations with brilliant contrasting shades of yellows and reds. Take the White Domes one-mile loop around the sandstone formations to see sweeping desert vistas, windows, caves and a slot canyon.
One of the many points of interest in Valley of Fire, Seven Sisters is a group of 7 tall, red, eroded boulders. Once part of the red sandstone formations that sit nearby, the Seven Sisters are all that remains after the relentless forces of erosion stripped away the surrounding sandstone deposits.
Built with Valley of Fire sandstone by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s, the Cabins serve as a picnic area providing the perfect place to rest your feet, or to stop for lunch.
Pay your respects to Private John J. Clark, a man who served actively during the Civil War and lost his life in Fire of Valley. Following his discharge after being shot and contracting typhoid fever, Clark embarked on a journey from Bakersfield to Salt Lake City and died presumably from dehydration while traveling through Fire of Valley.
Seen from the main road, Elephant Rock is a fine example of an arch in the shape of an elephant. Park in the nearby parking lot and take the 1/3 of a mile trail to get up-close views of this one-of-a-kind rock formation.
Look at the bases of bushes for desert iguanas and Gila monsters, or delight in the desert marigolds poking through the dusty dirt. Valley of Fire may have scorching hot summers, but you’ll find an abundance of plant and animal life hiding away in the cracks and crevices of the sandstone formations.
Plants & Flowers
Valley of Fire State Park is dominated with creosote, burro and brittle bushes. Especially spectacular in the springtime, look out for the desert marigolds, indigo bush and desert mallows.
Valley of Fire is swarming with wildlife. Lizards, snakes, coyotes, bobcats, kit fox, skunk, jackrabbits, antelope, big horn sheep and even desert tortoises can be found roaming throughout the valley.