Oak Creek is a hiking
trail located about 2.5 miles south of the Red Rock Canyon Visitors
Center on SR 159. Note, this trail is accessible from the Scenic
Drive also. This hike is slightly longer and also takes you into Oak Creek
Canyon. It's a great trail for hiking, horseback riding and photography. The hike
is about 4 miles long, fairly level most of the way, with a limited
amount of steep grades. It takes you from the Desert Scrub ecological
zone to the Pinion Juniper zone. The contrast is interesting.
walk up the trail, you can actually see the environment change. On an
average weekend you might meet 6 to 10 people along this trail. It takes
you to the base of Mount Wilson, then Oak Creek Canyon and then Rainbow
Oak Creek is a good example of the type of stream found in the Great Basin.
It is snow fed and starts deep within the canyon. As it makes its way to
lower elevations, it waters a variety of environments and sustains
numerous plant and animal communities. Eventually it disappears into the
desert becoming part of the subterranean water table.
If your interest
is photography, bring a lot of film. There are countless photo
opportunities on this trail. Outstanding vistas, both to the north
and to the south, the sheer cliff
face of Mount Wilson, the jagged cliffs
of Rainbow Mountain, the twisted
forms of the Juniper trees, Oak
Creek and Oak Creek Canyon. Even the
rocks along the trail are worth the attention of your camera.