Las Vegas is a favorite home base among adventurers from all walks of life, whether it’s climbing, camping, motorcycles, or hiking. There is so much to do and see in and around Las Vegas, there’s no wonder why 3-million and counting call it home. For these particular trips, we’ll be riding away from the glimmering glitz and glamour of the neon strip, out to our favorite day rides around town. So whether you’re a local or a tourist, it’s time to break out the Harleys and Hondas and your favorite riding boots and see a few of our favorites.
First up we have a saloon with a history so rich it’s almost hard to believe. Pioneer Saloon lies in the tiny town of Goodsprings Nevada, an old mining town and a quick 35-minute ride from the Las Vegas Strip on the 15 freeway. Or you can take the old two-lane highway (Las Vegas Blvd) all the way to Goodsprings, and check out the seven magic mountains along the way. We recommend the latter for a less hectic ride. The Pioneer Saloon has such a rich and lengthy backstory, that we’re going to leave it for you to discover on your own from the numerous news clippings plastered all over the walls. Though we will say that it was built in 1913 and the walls are made from stamped tin that was manufactured by Sears and Roebuck, believed to be the last of its kind in the United States. You can’t go wrong with any cocktail from this one-of-a-kind bar.
Red Rock Scenic Loop
Another quick getaway is the Red Rock Scenic Loop, a thirteen-mile one-way loop through Nevada’s own little Zion; a short 30 minutes from the strip. This loop and national conservation have gained so much attention in the last couple of years, that reservation times are now required via recreation.gov until May 31st. The thirteen-mile serpentine-style road is a motorcyclist’s dream, with long driving curves, sharp winding turns, and no oncoming traffic. The sights all along this loop are unique to Red Rock Canyon and can be found nowhere else. Our biggest piece of advice for this ride? Do NOT come here on the weekends, the wait times can be several hours long even with a reservation. Most weekdays you can pull right up to the gate, pay the $15 entry fee and be on your way. When you’re heading out of Red Rock, be sure to stop off in the small town of Blue Diamond and grab yourself a quick drink at Cottonwood Station.
Mountain Springs Saloon
Next up on the list is the perfect quick summer (or spring) getaway, Mountain Springs Saloon. Nestled in a quiet little mountain pass roughly 45 minutes from the strip, this hidden biker bar is a great escape from the heat of the city. Grab yourself a cold beer from the bar, then head out around back to get yourself some of their famous pulled pork sandwiches. If you find yourself heading here on a weekend, you might get lucky and catch some live music at one of their weekend parties. Pro-tip; map this one out before you go, if you miss the turn you won’t be able to turn around for five miles.
For the hungry rider that wants to explore a historical little town, Boulder City is the perfect spot for you. Located 40 minutes east of the strip, this once temporary town for the workers of the Hoover Dam, eventually sealed its place in permanence. Get here early to grab some breakfast at the world-famous Coffee Cup Cafe and walk it all off by checking out the numerous antique stores and historical landmarks in town. With so many great restaurants and bars within walking distance of each other, we’ll leave the lunch and cocktail choices up to you. Just be sure to stop at Chilly Jilly’z on your way out of down and grab yourself a Dole Whip Float.
Valley of Fire
Last but not least is one of Nevada’s better-known state parks, Valley of Fire is the furthest ride on this list at 55 minutes north of the Las Vegas Strip. The name doesn’t come from the triple-digit degrees as you may think, it comes from the unique rock formations here and their vibrant red hues. This beautiful scenic ride has an endless array of photo-ops scattered throughout. Be sure to start at the south end and make your way north through the park, so you can stop in Moapa on your way out for a quick bite and fuel. There’s only a handful of restaurants to choose from, but you can’t go wrong with any of them.