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Hiking Las Vegas Blog
Ruby's Inn at Bryce Canyon
Ruby's Inn is the closest lodging to Bryce Canyon and is the perfect place for you to stay for an enjoyable visit. Established in 1916 the folks at Ruby's Inn know how to treat its guest.
There are five different types of rooms you can choose from: Double King, Double Queen with jetted tub, Double Queen, King with in-room spa or Two Room Family Suite.
All rooms include: Cable Satellite TV, Coffeemaker, Iron and Ironing board, Dataports, AM/Fm Alarm Clock, Microwave, Refrigerator, Free High-Speed Wireless Internet and 100 Non-Smoking Rooms.
The rooms are spacious, very clean and there are connecting rooms if you are travelling with a group. If you want to bring your pets, they are allowed.
Ruby's has an indoor pool and jacuzzi. It's a great way to relax after a long hike!
If you didn't hike enough, there's a fitness center.
Need to do some work? There's a business center.
Staying for an extended period? There's a laundromat.
Forget something or looking for a gift? The General Store is amazing. From staples to unique gifts the General Store has what you are looking for.
Ruby’s Inn has three great restaurants, the Cowboy’s Buffet & Steak Room, Canyon Diner and Ebenezer’s Barn and Grill. I have eaten at the Cowboy Buffet & Steak Room and the buffet is great. It features high quality food at reasonable prices.
Ebenezer's Barn and Grill features great food and live music.
If you are looking for something fast, the Canyon Diner is your best bet.
There are so many different type of activities you couldn't do them all in one trip.
Here's a list of the activities offered:
Guided ATV Tours
Cross Country Skiing
And special events during certain times of the year.
If you are planning a trip to Bryce, Ruby's Inn is the place to stay. It has everything you could possibly want and is the closest lodging to Bryce Canyon, about five miles away.
For more information and to make a reservation: Ruby's Inn
If you’re not a hiker, you’re probably wondering to yourself why it has become such a popular hobby. Naturally, you might assume that it’s because people want to take in the views, sounds, and smells of their natural environment. You might also think that it’s a great way to get away from urban life and have some peaceful moments. While all of those are popular and valid reasons, other significant motivations for hiking are the health benefits.
At its core, hiking is a cardiovascular workout. This means that hiking can decrease your risk of coronary heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and stroke by improving the respiratory functions of your heart, lungs, and blood vessels. It can also help you manage your blood sugar levels and blood pressure. As with any other aerobic exercise (that’s done regularly), hiking can also lower your risk of triglycerides, high cholesterol, and certain cancers — namely, breast cancer, colon cancer, and possibly lung cancer and endometrial cancer.
One obvious benefit of trekking through nature is the benefit to your physique by inducing weight loss. For a 150-pound person, hiking can burn up to 370 calories per hour. Hiking can also strengthen certain muscles including multiple components of your hips and legs — not to mention those glutes! Furthermore, your upper body will also feel the effects in your arms, shoulders, and neck. And let’s not leave out the core, which is yet another benefit of walking the trails. Finally, another not-so-obvious physical benefit is that hiking can increase bone density and/or slower its loss.
As the clear majority of studies will tell you, your physical health is also improved by your mood. And hiking and all that it encompasses can help boost your spirit by alleviating anxiety and stress relief. According to Gregory A. Miller, Ph.D., the president of the American Hiking Society, "Being in nature is ingrained in our DNA and we sometimes forget that." This makes sense because studies have shown that hiking leads to better sleeping habits and a reduced risk of depression and early death. As a result, someone who engages in seven hours of physical activity per week has a 40% lower risk of early death than someone who is active for less than 30 minutes per week.
According to another study, disconnecting from technology by spending time outdoors can actually increase your creative problem-solving skills and attention span. Even poker players like Eugene Katchalov have found the time to break away from the rigors of the gaming tables and squeeze in some worthwhile exercise by hiking in the mountains of Las Vegas. Perhaps by doing so, Katchalov is able to later return to the tables with a refreshed Zen and greater focus.
So, how much time do I need to spend hiking to really reap the benefits? Most professionals say that one can achieve the above-referenced benefits by moderately hiking for only 150 minutes per week; although you should know that you would need to increase your workouts by one extra hour per week in order to reduce the risks of both colon cancer and breast cancer. Keep in mind that while 2½ hours of trekking per week might seem a bit daunting, there’s no rule that says that you have to do it all at once. Feel free to break it up in ways that fit into your schedule, even if you just incorporate a short hike into every weekday, whether it’s in the morning, after lunchtime, or in the evening — whatever works for you. The only catch is that each aerobic session must last for at least 10 minutes in order for the exercise to effectively work toward your weekly total.
People have long known that walking through a forest or exploring a mountainside can be a calming feast for your eyes, ears, and nose. Now, we also know that hiking can nourish both your body and soul as well. So, the next time you hear the phrase “take a hike,” whether it’s in a movie, TV show, or from a snarky friend, you can silently giggle to yourself and think, “perhaps I will!” You’ll be all the better for it.
The Story Behind the Monument Arch
The Monument Arch has been a quest of mine for several years. At first I thought it might be an illusion. (See photo below.) As time passed I forgot about it until Davis just happened to catch the Arch in a photo taken from Black Velvet Peak. After inspecting the photo, the hunt was on again! From previous hikes to East Monument Peak I was convinced the Arch was a technical hike (ropes) from the east. Davis and I figured we would approach it from the west, which meant hiking to West Monument and then somehow find a route down to the Arch. Not an easy task for an illusive Arch that might not exist! We obviously would need a good pair of hiking socks.
On December 7th, 2001, Davis and I tried to find the Arch by ascending to West Monument and then descending the Gully of Death. About halfway down the gully the sun started to sink and we got out of there. Attempt 1 was a dismal failure. The only thing we learned was this was going to be a long hike. Also, we learn that our combined IQ's during the hike didn't reach into double digits :)
On an early and cold morning in January, Davis and I tried again to find the Arch. This time our trailhead was off of Lovell Canyon road, the same trailhead for "The Park" hike. We figured this was a quicker approach than from Black Velvet trailhead. We hiked to West Monument and started the descent. Once past where we turned around last time, the going became tough. It was loose and brushy and death was in the air or, at least, a minor scrape from scrub oak! Finally, we were just around the corner from the Arch. We turned the corner and... No Arch, it was an illusion! There was an Arch type structure without the Arch. Maybe in a few thousand years it will become an Arch. I don't think we'll wait. We were disappointed to say the least. I wouldn't have believed it unless I saw it with my own eyes.
Photos Don't Lie
We tried to return the camera that took the photo of the Arch claiming it was defective. The store manager promptly threw us out of the store. We looked at the photo again and realized we were defective. We had stopped about 75 yards shy of the real Arch. We were almost 100% sure there was an Arch. We planned to wait until the longer days of April to conquer the Arch.
On a warm day in mid-April we started at Black Velvet trailhead on our quest to stand in the Arch. We both agreed the hike in from Black Velvet was better than the hike in from Lovell Canyon road. It didn't matter to us that it was longer. As we approached the "Ledges" Davis hurt his ankle. Having watched several episodes of Marcus Welby, MD when I was a kid, I offered to operate on it. Davis declined. The Arch got us again! I think it was smiling!
On May 14th, 2002, we were certain the Arch was ours! We were both in good shape and the daylight stretched into the evening. We departed from Black Velvet trailhead, ascended to West Monument, and descended the Gully of Near Death. This time we walked the additional 75 yards and... there was the Arch. The only thing that separated us was a 60-foot, class 5, wall! Where did that come from? It was not apparent in Davis' photo. We both collapsed. I am sure the Arch was laughing at us.
Time to Bring in the Professional
Ed Forkos has been climbing mountains for 40 years. He's very knowledgeable and puts safety first. I told him about the Arch and he wanted to conquer it. Bringing ropes and webbing with him, we planned to approach the Arch from the east and descend into a ramp that leads to the Arch. From my previous trips I knew if we could get to the ramp, we had it made. I talked Peter and Anna into coming along. Suckers!
On Halloween 2002, the four of us started walking toward East Canyon in our hiking costumes on route to the Arch. On an previous hike I had descended Arch Canyon, so we decided to climb it instead of following the traditional route. Part of the climb was very exposed class 4. Once near the Arch, I showed Ed all the routes down to the ramp and we decided on one. After finding an appropriate anchor, Ed tied me into the 100-foot rope and I started descending to the ramp. Peter thought it would be a good idea to tie the rope around my neck. I disagreed and kicked him off the hike. (I kick him off every hike :) I believed it was going to be a class 3 descent. I was wrong! It was class 4, at least. The rope was very reassuring. I inched my way down to the ramp and started running toward the Arch. Slam! I forgot to untie the rope. Thankfully it wasn't around my neck :) After untying the rope, I walked to the Arch. Wow! It was taller than I had thought. I was finally standing in the Arch.
The Arch is NOT on topo maps. I believe we were the first to stand in the Arch. I have never talked to anyone who knew about the Arch. We figured the Arch was at least 100 feet tall. It's more impressive than the Arch at Bridge Mountain.
Today only a handful of people have stood under the arch. To my knowledge I am the only person who has led this hike. We now rap down to the arch. This is safer and faster.
I had the arch registered in a database of natural arches around the country.
This is one of many stories of how I and others found peaks and points of interest in Red Rock Canyon.
Branch Whitney is the author of Hiking Las Vegas and creator of the 52 Peak Club where members hike to the best 52 Peaks around Las Vegas, NV