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Base Camp Las Vegas: 101 Hikes in the Southwest Paperback – August 8, 2017
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"Part travel guide, part history, part paean to the Southwest, Deborah Wall's descriptions of the region are warm, personal, and informed. Her love for and knowledge of the 101 locations covered here shine through, and her superb photography captures the full beauty of the Southwest's many different geologies and landscapes. This is a book that will appeal to locals and visitors alike, one that readers will refer to over and over again, delving in to discover the almost unlimited number of scenic wonders within easy reach of Las Vegas, that most improbable of gateways to the great outdoors." -- Peter Thody, RoadTripAmerica.com
"A good guidebook for nature enthusiasts who are curious about the vegetation and critters they encounter" -- Scott Wyland, European Stars and Stripes
"We live in the golden age of guidebooks, Base Camp Las Vegas by Deborah Wall is a beautifully laid out, richly photographed and impeccably organized guide to one of America’s greatest trekking regions."--GearFlogger.com
"Diving into the book, it provided a broad cross-section of terrain and difficulty, providing something for everyone. The book uses full-color printing throughout, and the photography is beautiful. There were a number of obscure trails and adventures that I had only heard of in passing, and that’s where Base Camp Las Vegas excels, in whetting your appetite for exploring places you may have heard of but have never been."--Jeff Hester, SoCalHiker
"The book was spot on with descriptions of the areas I’ve been to, and the photography is superb. The publication itself is a high quality, slick stock, soft cover book. It could be carried in a daypack. The directions for different hikes are clear and easy to follow." -- Leon Pantenburg, SurvivalCommonSense.com
"I really like the idea of a "base camp" from which to explore an area and instantly liked the quality feel of the book. Deborah Wall's writing is engaging, it feels like a friend is talking to you and preparing you for your day's adventure. Each description is followed by a "quick glance" feature that includes the season to go, hike length, difficulty, elevation gain, starting elevation, any warnings, the jurisdiction and driving directions?"-- Carol White, author of Live Your Road Trip Dream: Travel for a Year for the Cost of Staying Home
"There is more to do in Las Vegas than visit the casinos and the Strip! Having hiked many of the hikes in Deborah Wall's Base Camp Las Vegas: 101 Hikes in the Southwest over the years, I can say she is spot on. The Rings Trail and Lava Tube hikes in Mojave National Preserve are quite the adventure but not difficult. After hearing about Valley of the Fire State Park in Nevada for years, we recently completed the Mouse's Tank and White Domes Loop Trail hikes taking us through stunning beauty." -- Jaimie Hall Bruzenak, author of Retire to an RV: The Roadtrip to Affordable Retirement
"Deborah Wall's new book, Base Camp Las Vegas: 101 Hikes in the Southwest is truly a unique hiking guide that takes readers on a tour of 101 different hiking trails found in the vicinity of Las Vegas that includes forested canyons, geological wonders, and some off the beaten path hikes that even locals may have overlooked. Almost every page has a beautiful picture of the locations featured in the book."-- Osie Turner, Living-Las-Vegas.com
About the Author
Deborah Wall is a freelance writer and photographer specializing in both adventure travel and family excursions. She writes an outdoor column for View Community Newspapers, a division of the Las Vegas Review-Journal. A lifelong hiker, she has been a ski racer and has taught skiing and sailing. A former television producer and news anchor, she also worked as a model for skiing and outdoor publications. This book, her fourth, is an expanded and updated edition of Base Camp Las Vegas a best-selling hiking guide first published in 2010. Ms. Wall is the author of Great Hikes: A Cerca Country Guide (2004). She co-authored Access for All: Touring the Southwest with Limited Mobility (2014) and was a major contributor to Road Trips and Adventures, two more of the Cerca Country Guide series. She has a Nevada Press Association award for excellence and writes columns on BaseCampGuides.com about little-known hiking routes in the Southwest and tips for taking fun and safe trips.
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The first part of the book covers preparation and safety. Deborah presents lots of good ideas to consider before making a long hike. There are also great full color photos that feature the highlights of a hike. For each hike, dangerous conditions are noted.
One of my favorite section is the appendix at the rear of the book. Here, there is an index to hikes.
All in all, I was delighted with this book. Great photos with lots of tips. I only wish I lived closer!
Advance Review Copy courtesy of the publisher.
I was pleased to find this section at the beginning of the book. With hiking, there are a lot of risks if one goes unprepared. Hiking in the desert is even more deadly. This book very wisely covers the importance of bringing water, and specified just how much each hiker should bring for a day hike. Other warnings include flash flooding, which to the inexperienced hiker may seem silly in the desert. I mean, we'd know it was coming based on the weather, right? Wrong. Flash flood is just that, unexpected. And in the desert, other hazards include hypothermia (when the sun goes down) and rattlesnakes. Plus, it gives a little section on if you're going to hike with children.
Finally, in this section, it encourages "leave no trace", something I've found more and more in national parks, as well as the Boy Scout motto when it comes to hiking and camping. It's a no brainer, but you'd be amazed by how many visitors just dump trash wherever or graffiti on petroglyph and pictorgraph rocks. It's frustrating and sad, the lack of respect show by those that can't be bothered to think of others.
So the book opens with Red Rock Canyon, which I think is probably the biggest pull for the Nevada and, specifically, Las Vegas area. With strikingly red rocks, it's very photogenic. But that isn't the only interesting part. The area of Nevada is rich with American Indian culture and history. While on vacation, we almost went to Red Rock Canyon, that is until I discovered Valley of Fire. Even the name sounds cool.
From falls to canyons, there are so many trails to choose from. And the great thing about this book is that each trail has the following: Best season to go, length, difficulty, elevation loss, trailhead elevations, warnings (such as flash floods, excessive heat, etc), jurisdiction, and directions. I wish we had this book before exploring Valley of Fire. The areas we visited (Atlatl Rock, Mouse's Tank, White Domes) were all covered, included a little explanation, history and tips if you had children with you.
Beyond the specifics of location, distance, geographic information, Deborah Wall really sets herself apart in this genre as a personal guide. I was impressed with the amount of detail, the additional safety information pertinent to desert hiking, and the stunning photographs. I often utilize the library for guide resources, but this is one you're going to want to own and have with you. Highly recommended for outdoor enthusiasts of all levels, both living in the area and planning visits.
I received an advanced reader copy (eGalley) from Imbrifex Books through NetGalley. This review reflects my honest and unbiased opinions.