Description - Spring Mountain Ranch is located within the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, at the base of the magnificent Wilson Cliffs. The many springs in these mountains provided water for Paiute Indians and later brought mountain men and early settlers to the area. This 520-acre area was developed into a combination working Historic Spring Mountain Ranch. Past owners of the ranch included Chester Lauck of the comedy team "Lum & Abner," German actress Vera Krupp, and millionaire Howard Hughes.
Because of the higher elevation, the ranch offers a diverse opportunity for plant study. Four plant communities are represented: Desert Scrub, Black brush, Pinon-Juniper, and Riparian. Plants typical of the desert as well as woodland can be seen, and with adequate rainfall the spring brings a burst of wildflowers. Common species sighted are desert marigold, globe mallow, brittlebush, Joshua Tree, Mohave Yucca, and indigo bush.
Animal life is diverse but nocturnal, so many species go unseen. Typical desert animals include a variety of lizards and snakes, antelope ground squirrels, jackrabbits, cotton tails, kit fox, and coyote. Higher elevation species include rock squirrel, badger, mule deer, and bighorn sheep.
- Spring Mountain Ranch State Park has guided tours through the ranch house and other historic ranch buildings. The Ranch House/Visitor Center is open daily 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Here the visitor will find information about the ranch and surrounding areas, and can take a self-guided tour of the ranch house interior. Park Docents are on duty to answer questions.
Historical Sites at the park include the Main Ranch House; Wilson Cemetery, Sandstone Cabin; Board and Batten bunkhouse; Blacksmith's Shop, Hay and Horse Barn/Corral, Two-Hole Outhouse, Chinchilla Shed and many more. Guided tours throughout the historic area are offered. For current times and more information please write to or call the park office.
The site also offers a tree shaded picnic area, scenic hiking trails and cultural events pavilion.
Recreation - Recreational opportunities in the park include, picnicking, viewing historic sites, historic guided tours, hiking and cultural events.
Climate - At 3,800 feet, the ranch is usually 10-15 degrees cooler than the Las Vegas Valley. Temperatures range from below freezing to above 100 degrees, and winds gusting down Sandstone Canyon are not uncommon. The summer season usuallly brings a few thunderstorms and flash floods. Winters are cold, with occasional snow showers.
Spring Mountain Ranch State Park is located 15 miles west of Las Vegas, via Charleston Blvd., in the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.