Outstanding vistas of Lake Mead and the Muddy Mountains can be found in this remote area. The Lime Canyon Wilderness is located east of Las Vegas, Nevada. Lime Ridge dominates this Wilderness and trends north-south reaching an elevation of 4,406 feet. This area contains rugged drainages and gently rolling hills, paralleling ridges, and sandy washes. Faulting and erosion have exposed a variety of sedimentary deposits.
The rugged ridges and rolling hills of this intriguing backcountry destination provide opportunities for quiet solitude, which becomes more apparent the deeper into the wilderness you venture. Infrequent visitor use and the need for route finding skills provide great opportunities for solitude and recreation including hiking, horseback riding, hunting, exploring, and camping under the night sky.
Lime Canyon Wilderness is dominated by Lime Ridge, which is composed of older Cambrian through Pennsylvanian carbonate rocks. The wilderness area's namesake, Lime Canyon, cuts through the Wilderness as it drains west to the Overton Arm of Lake Mead. The canyons and bajadas which overlook the Overton Arm of Lake Mead sit at about 1,475 feet. South of Lime Canyon, you can find some Precambrian metamorphic rocks.
Lime Canyon Wilderness is a sparsely vegetated Mojave Desert scrub environment with creosote bush, white bursage, Joshua trees, catclaw acacia, Mojave yucca, Nevada jointfir, and barrel cactus scattered across the landscape. Arrowweed, paperbag bush, indigo bush, and buckhorn cholla can also be seen.
With a watchful eye you may be able to spot black-tailed jackrabbits, desert cottontail, desert woodrats, white-tailed antelope squirrels, side-blotched lizards, and slow moving desert tortoises.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Lime Canyon Wilderness.
The Lime Canyon Wilderness is about 45 air miles east of Las Vegas, just east of the Lake Mead National Recreation Area. Gold Butte Backcountry Byway Road and Quail Spring Wash Road provide access to the Lime Canyon Wilderness. Road conditions vary; high-clearance and four-wheel drive are recommended.
The most common access point is via Highway 170 off of Interstate 15, just west of Mesquite, Nevada. Take 170 south for 3 miles, crossing the Virgin River. After the bridge, turn right onto the paved Gold Butte Road and drive 14 miles where the pavement ends. Continue on the dirt road and turn right at the Y-intersection, following the Gold Butte Backcountry Byway which eventually forms the eastern boundary of the wilderness. From the byway, several rough vehicle routes provide access to the northern and southern portions of the wilderness. Access roads require a high-clearance vehicle and 4-wheel drive capability.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.
Clark County Conservation of Public Land and Natural Resources Act of 2002 - Public law 107-282 (11/6/2002) To establish wilderness areas, promote conservation, improve public land, and provide for high quality development in Clark County, Nevada, and for other purposes
The Lime Canyon Wilderness provides a striking backdrop for hiking, horseback riding, and camping. Wildlife is abundant, with a wide variety of bird and reptile species. Backcountry permits are not required. Hunting and non-commercial trapping are allowed with proper licensing. There are no designated trails in this wilderness area.
Want to Volunteer for Wilderness?
Citizens who volunteer their time to steward our wilderness areas are an essential part of wilderness management. Contact the following groups to inquire about volunteer opportunities.