WINTER HIKE AND BIG HORN SHEEPS
Las Vegas Travel Blog› entry 4 of 5 › view all entries
December 16th, 2007 – by: mellemel8
White Rock / La Madre Springs Loop
This trail can be started at White Rock Springs or Willow Springs, and can be done in either direction.
By starting at Willow Springs, hikers can deal with the steep climb to White Rock near the beginning of the hike, rather than at the end. When you come to a fork with a sign reading "White Rock Springs 2.2 miles", take the uphill trail to the left. Follow it to White Rock upper parking lot, continuing northwest from the lot. When the trail forks, go left and follow the trail until it intersects an old dirt road. Follow that road downhill to where it forks to the left, returning you to Willow Springs. (6 miles round trip, moderate).
as with began our hike. we saw a family of big horn sheep on the side of the mountain wall.
The canyon is one of the easternmost parts of the Mojave Desert; the bottom of the canyon, from 3,600 to 4,500 ft (1,100 to 1,400 m), is in the Lower Sonoran Zone, while the area from 4,500 ft (1,400 m) up is in the Upper Sonoran Zone. The character of the sandstone layers is such that a number of year-round springs may be found in the recesses of the side canyons.
Some 600 species of plants are known in the area; common types in the canyon bottom include the Joshua tree, Mojave yucca, banana yucca, creosote, and blackbrush. Higher up the Utah juniper and scrub live oak come to dominate, and ponderosa pines may be found at the top of the canyon, where it connects to the Spring Mountains.
Wild burros are a familiar sight, as are rabbits and ground squirrels. Desert bighorn sheep are occasionally seen at higher elevations.
The Conservation Area is protected habitat for the Desert Tortoise. A mascot Tortoise, named Mojave Max, is kept at the Visitors Center.
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