Red Rocks Canyon National Conservation Area is located just a few kilometers west of Las Vegas. The colorful desert hills and mountains offer many opportunities for hikers to follow established trails or to explore new routes. One of the designated trails is the one to Turtlehead Peak. From the one-way Scenic Drive Trail, the trailhead starts at the Sandstone Quarry parking area at the foot of the Calico Hills. The trailhead for Calico Tanks and Turtlehead Peak are the same but a fork is reached in 0.2 miles. The hike then climbs 2000 vertical feet in 2.2 miles (3.7km) to the summit.
The route follows a wash between sandstone hills then starts a steady climb through rocky desert hills to the north side of the peak. The middle section is the steepest and the rockiest. Once on the back side of the peak the trail winds gently to the top.
Wonderful views are the reward at the summit cairn. Sandstone cliffs dominate the Red Rocks area, surrounded by the La Madre Mountains on the north side. Snow-capped Mt. Charleston (11 916 feet) was visible to the northwest. The Las Vegas Valley extends east to the hills on the horizon. The Spring Mountains lay to the west and the south.
Red Rocks offers much to hikers and is a great destination for a week of hiking in the southwest desert.