Fire Wave

Round Trip Distance: 1.4 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Elevation: 1823 - 2007 feet
Cellphone: 0 - 3 bars
Time: 1 hr.
Trailhead: White Domes Rd. P#3
Fee: $10/vehicle
Attractions: Scenic geology

The Fire Wave trail is located in the Valley of Fire State Park near Overton, Nevada. Undulating streaks of pink and white layers of sandstone that stretch out across the landscape like rivers of fire are what give the trail its name and make it a popular trail with the parks many visitors.

From the Visitor Center follow the White Domes Road for about 4.5 miles to parking lot #3 where the trailhead is on the opposite side of the road.

The trail starts out by cutting across a sandy and sparsely vegetated hill toward a line of red cliffs.

As the trail progresses it turns and works its way down and around the point of the cliffs where it will follow a small wash over to a large expanse of slickrock that will serve as the trail until it reaches its ultimate destination.

The trail is well marked at this point and hikers are asked to stay on the designated route to avoid creating any spurious trails. The designated trail is designed to provide both a scenic route and one that will resist erosion by not trampling out the vegetation that helps hold the loose sand in place.

Once the trail mounts the long uneven expanse of slickrock the streaks of pink and white sandstone begin to appear.

Ribbons of color vary from a few inches wide to more than a foot.

Viewing the waves of color from different angles changes the highlights and patterns of the lines.

There isn't a sign marking the end of the trail but a small sandstone knob seems to be the natural turn around point.

On one side of the knob nature has sculpted a bowl with broad stripes.

These lines seem to run to infinity as they vanish in the distance.

The Fire Wave trail wasn't on the map that we had printed out and brought along. We aren't sure if the steady stream of hikers that we saw on the trail found out about it from their friends or were directed there by the staff at the Visitor Center. Some of them may have just happened upon it like we did. Whatever the case if you have an hour to spare the Fire Wave trail is a good place to spend it. If you would like to see it for yourself then all you have to do is 'Take a hike'.