Tule Springs remains cool draw for desert dwellers

A historic ranch lies at the heart of Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs, a spacious city recreational facility at the edge of northwest Las Vegas.

A good destination for a daytime outing year-round, the park provides respite from city bustle and noise. It is popular for picnics, birding, fishing, exploring on foot, biking, horseback riding and photography.

Known simply as Tule Springs to generations of Las Vegas residents, the park is about 15 minutes north of downtown off U.S. Highway 95. Exit the highway at Durango Drive and turn right. Continue north on Durango to Brent Avenue, where you turn right to reach the park entrance road.

The park is open daily, but the hours of operation change with the seasons. From September to the end of April, it is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. From May through August, it is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Visitors pay $6 per car, or $1 if entering on foot, by bike or on horseback. Frequent visitors should consider purchasing a $45 annual pass. A senior annual pass is a bargain at $15 for visitors 50 and older. A brochure available at the fee booth details the park’s facilities.

The Sheep Mountains form a beautiful background for the groomed lawns, shade trees, fruit trees and shrubs surrounding the historic core of the ranch marked by the white fences, house, barn and outbuildings. Ducks, geese and peacocks wander the grounds near four ponds that are stocked monthly with fish. Anglers must have Nevada fishing licenses.

A meandering road leads to parking areas for family and group picnic sites. Foot paths explore the verdant ranch area as well as adjacent open desert land. An extended network of desert trails east of the area has scattered shade structures and seating. The desert trails also may be reached from parking areas along Racel Street about a mile south of the park entrance.

The desert is doing its best to produce wildflowers this spring despite spotty winter rainfall. Roadsides near the park are crowded with bright yellow brittlebush and orange mallow. Walkers on the desert pathways will enjoy these exuberant plants as well as many less obvious blooms until the summer heat arrives.

Water bubbling to the surface at Tule Springs in the middle of an arid valley naturally drew animals and early hunter-gatherers to the spot. Native people later tended small plots of beans, corn and other crops at the site. When non-native settlers arrived in the Las Vegas Valley, they utilized the water. Tule Springs became a stop along a stage road to booming Rhyolite a hundred miles north. Bert Nay bought up water rights and land at Tule Springs in 1916 and farmed there until 1928.

The site lay untended for more than a decade until purchased by Prosper Goumond of Las Vegas. Goumond developed an operating livestock ranch and a retreat for family and friends. He took advantage of Nevada’s liberal divorce laws to create a dude ranch where well-heeled people seeking divorces waited out their six weeks — the period of time required to become a Nevada resident for purposes of obtaining a divorce — in a comfortable Western setting with access to the attractions of Las Vegas. Most of the ranch buildings date back to the 1940s.

The property has since changed hands several times, once becoming a state park and twice serving as a city park, which saved it from urban development. It was named for state Sen. Floyd Lamb when it was a state park.

As you drive the approach road and park access road, note the thick layer of light-colored, eroded earth that covers the area. This natural deposit reflects a changing climate over a span of thousands of years. It marks a time when it was much cooler and wetter around Tule Springs. Ice Age animals such as mammoths, camels and early horses watered and fed there, hunted by fierce predators. The eroded layer contains fossils in such rich quantity that this part of the valley is being considered for protection as a new national monument.

Margo Bartlett Pesek’s Trip of the Week column appears on Sundays.

ad-high_impact_4
Entertainment
Artists from Cirque du Soleil contribute art to Las Vegas art exhibit
Artists from Cirque du Soleil contribute art to Las Vegas gallery exhibit
Red Plate on the Las Vegas Strip serves a cocktail made with blooming jasmine tea
Red Plate on the Las Vegas Strip serves a cocktail made with jasmine tea
Benny the Ice Skating Dog
Benny is a Las Vegas Labrador who was rescued by former pro skater Cheryl Del Sanyo, and trained to ice skate. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Nevada State Museum
The Nevada State Museum of Las Vegas, located at the Springs Preserve, covers all eras of the state, from prehistoric to today.
Throw a better dinner party
Cash appears at Baseball Winter Meetings
Lights FC mascot Cash plays the electronic drums at the EZ Inflatables’ booth on Tuesday at the Baseball Winter Meetings trade show at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.
5 albums to soundtrack your holiday gatherings in style
1. Various Artists, “Holidays Rule," with Rufus Wainwright, The Shins, Calexico and more. 2. Various Artists, “We Wish You a Metal Xmas and a Headbanging New Year," with Lemmy Kilmister, Alice Cooper, Chuck Billy and others. 3. Various Artists, “Christmas on Death Row," featuring Snoop Dogg and Nate Dogg to name but a few. 4. Bright Eyes, “A Christmas Album.” 5. Various Artists, "The Motown Christmas Album." (Jason Bracelin/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Inside the kitchen at Springs Preserve
The staff of Divine Events do party preparation in the kitchen at Divine Cafe at Springs Preserve. With nine parties the following day, this is a particularly busy time for the crew. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
WinterFest
WinterFest in Henderson.
Miss Rodeo America Fashion Show
The 28 women contestants of Miss Rodeo America compete in a fashion show at the Tropicana on Dec. 7, 2018.
Tournament Of Kings Holiday Show
Wizards and warriors are ready for the holidays at Excalibur's Tournament of Kings Holiday Dinner Show.
Take a dive with the Silverton mermaids
A visit to the Silverton Casino Hotel is not complete without taking in the popular, and very unique, mermaid show.
Cowboys and western aficionados can buy virtually anything at Cowboy Christmas
Vegas Golden Knights Christmas Display
In the Las Vegas Valley, the chances of getting a white Christmas are slim. But this year, you can have a “Knight” Christmas. A Henderson resident has a Christmas lights display that is synchronized to the entrance music for the Golden Knights. GG Misa’s Knights light show is played every 30 minutes from 5 to 10 nightly. His light show consists of two songs: Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and the entrance music, “Le Castle Vania,” from the movie “John Wick.” The display is located at 730 Bollons Island St. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Reivew-Journal)
Holiday Hooch At El Cortez is Just in Time For Repeal Day And Christmas
Holiday Hooch At El Cortez Is Just In Time For Repeal Day And Christmas. Janna Karel/Las Vegas Review-Journal
TV's LGBT superheroes
Green Valley Ranch's Winter's Village
The Mob Museum
Best Friend Menu Reveal Wednesday
Chef Roy Choi tells us what to expect from Wednesday’s Facebook Live Menu Reveal for his new Park MGM restaurant Best Friend. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Quick Chat With Criss Angel
James D. Gish and Susan Anton rehearse
Susan Anton will be special guest at James D. Gish’s holiday concerts Dec. 7 at Summerlin Library and Dec. 9 at Clark County Library. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bellagio Winter Wonderland
"Majestic Holiday Magic" at the Bellagio Conservatory.
Underwater Santa At The Silverton
Santa takes a dive Sunday, December 2, at the Silverton Casino Hotel. (Mat Luschek / Review-Journal)
Cowabunga Bay Christmas Town
Las Vegas Natural History Museum
Las Vegas Natural History Museum, which opened in 1991, has exhibits of mechanical dinosaurs and taxidermied animals, along with live snakes, fish and sharks. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Magical Forest Lights
Cirque Du Soleil Performers Team Up For New Show "Kinekt"
Through dance, acrobatics and aerial arts, “Kinekt” tells a story all too familiar to modern families: how to maintain a human connection in the digital age. (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Ethel M Holiday Cactus Garden
The Pinball Hall of Fame in Las Vegas
The Pinball Hall of Fame was created by Tim Arnold and opened in 2006. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Jump! The Ultimate Dog Show at Springs Preserve in Las Vegas
Trainer Lou “Mack” McCammon guides several rescue dogs through a series of tricks and jumps two shows a day weekends through December at the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Life
Operation Homefront Holiday Meals for Military
Operation Homefront Holiday Meals for Military program gave meal kits to 200 families at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10047 in Las Vegas Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. It all started with a chance encounter in a supermarket in Utica, N.Y., near Fort Drum. A soldier, his wife and infant had a handful of grocery items they couldn't afford. A Beam Suntory employee picked up the $12 cost for the groceries. The program has grown from providing 500 meal kits to military families in 2009 to providing more than 7,000 nationally this holiday season.K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal @KMCannonPhoto
An elegant Tea Party for substance abuse and homeless women
An elegant Tea Party for substance abuse and homeless women at WestCare Women Children Campus in Las Vegas. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Former 51s manager Wally Backman chats about new job
Former Las Vegas 51s manager Wally Backman talks about his new job with the independent league Long Island Ducks during the Baseball Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Dec. 10, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Inside the kitchen at Springs Preserve
The staff of Divine Events do party preparation in the kitchen at Divine Cafe at Springs Preserve. With nine parties the following day, this is a particularly busy time for the crew. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Roy Choi on cooking for Park MGM employees
As he prepares to open his new restaurant Best Friend later this month at Park MGM, celebrity chef Roy Choi took the time to cook for the resort’s employees Tuesday. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Best Friend Menu Reveal Wednesday
Chef Roy Choi tells us what to expect from Wednesday’s Facebook Live Menu Reveal for his new Park MGM restaurant Best Friend. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Great Santa Run
People participated in the 14th annual Las Vegas Great Santa Run which raises cubs for Opportunity Village.
World Holidays Exhibit At The Natural History Museum
Migratory Bird Day teaches adults and kids to celebrate birds
Different organizations offered activities for kids and adults to learn about birds and celebrate their migration journey at Sunset Park. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
"Jackson: The Red Rock Canyon Burro" is a children's book about Red Rock Canyon
"Jackson: The Red Rock Canyon Burro" is a children's book about Red Rock Canyon (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Interfaith Amigos speak in Las Vegas
Celebrity photographer dedicates dance book to Las Vegas shooting victims
Behind the scenes with local celebrity photographer Jerry Metellus as he talks about his Dance For Vegas coffee book dedicated to the 58 victims of the October 1 shooting. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Dreamsickle Kids Foundation founder Gina Glass talks awareness
Gina Glass, 35, founded Dreamsickle Kids Foundation to raise awareness for sickle cell disease in Nevada. (Jessie Bekker/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like