March 27th, 2009: Last week I received an email from Arnie regarding a trek he was planning over a three day period to hike from resort to resort along the trail spending one night at each of the hotels along the way. This is something my wife and I and several trail buddies have discussed doing once the trail is complete next spring. Below are portions of Arnie’s Trek notes as shared with me.
ARNIE’S TREK NOTES: I finished my River Mountains Loop Trail hike on Tuesday and am currently attempting to make sense of my tape recorded journal entries and identifying the more than 352 photos I took along the way.
Briefly, I would have to say the trip was a success:
1. Flowers along a four mile stretch between the Pacifica Trailhead and the Hacienda were at their peak. ( Arnie started the trip at Railroad Pass Hotel)
2. Winds which were 20 to 30 on Sunday were from the Northwest and I was traveling Southeast and down hill so were no problem. In addition the forecasted rains didn’t show up until after I was at the hotel.
3. The scenery along the trail between the Hacienda and Lake Las Vegas was spectacular, especially liked the deep arroyos that cut into the desert and the civil engineering attempts through the use of culverts, bridges and rip rap to keep the trails from being washed away. One of the more interesting spots was a small oasis about a mile or so before reconnecting with Lakeshore Road, trailhead is about 100 yds past the park fee stations and 2 miles South of Lake Las Vegas. This is where the original water line to Las Vegas first comes out. Managed by BMI they arrange for water releases to feed the wildlife. There (is) a huge cottonwood tree at the location. ( BMI provides a water guzzler for wildlife here)
4. Since the distance between the Hacienda and Lake Las Vegas was 16.9 miles (according to my GPS) when I arrived at the waterfall, as suggested the concierge at Lowes, I called the valet service and they sent a shuttle to pick me up. Accomodations, food and service at the hotel was well worth the price. And they dropped me off just outside Lake Las Vegas early the next morning (about a half mile from where the RMLT reconnects).
5. The final leg from Lake las Vegas was also enjoyable with nice views off Vegas and Henderson, and great flowers between “B Mountain” and Railroad Pass.
Summary details of the hiking distances and times were as follows:
1. 38 total miles walked
2. 14 hours average moving time
3. 18 hours total time on trail.
I have details for each leg of the trail with GPS coordinates for key points along the trail as well as a note of convenient pit stops. ( Editor will add some of these details when available)
In terms of accomodations:
1. The rooms at all three hotels ranged from sufficent at the Railroad Pass Hotel to better than expected at the Hacienda and outstanding at Loews. Room rates range from $29 at the Hacienda, $49 at Railroad Pass and $119 at Loews. Normally Loews charges $239 for their “Best Value” rate but since I was a local and first time visitor to Loews they upgraded me to one of their nicest rooms with a view.
2. Quality of meals and service ranged from good to excellent. My favorite was the chicken picatta at Railroad Pass. Prices ranged from $17 to $40 for dinner depending upon what was selected.
Thank you Arnie for sharing this adventure with me. I’m going to start planning my “Resort to Resort Trekking” adventure tomorrow. 🙂