The Red Cliffs Desert Reserve is 62,000 acres – approximately 20 miles wide and 6 miles deep – of spectacular scenery set aside by the Federal government primarily for the protection of the threatened Mojave desert tortoise.
The Red Cliffs Desert Reserve, implemented in 1996 through the Endangered Species Act, is considered a very successful Habitat Conservation Plan. Administered by Washington County in a collaborative partnership with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), Utah Department of Natural Resources (DNR), and State of Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA), the Reserve protects the desert tortoise but also manages recreational activities and utility projects in an extraordinarily unique environment.
The Reserve is north of Ivins, Santa Clara, St. George and Washington City and can best be seen from your vehicle along the west side of the northbound I-15 freeway. But the Reserve can also be accessed on foot, bicycle or horseback. According to their website, “When you enter the Reserve at any one of the distinctive ‘step-over’ gates, you are entering a special place – not just another mountain bike trail or horseback ride.
“At the merging of three great ecosystems, the Mojave Desert, the Great Basin, and the Colorado Plateau, the Reserve is biologically rich with a unique array of animals and plants. The Reserve contains the most northern populations of the desert tortoise, Gila monster, sidewinder rattlesnake, and chuckwalla – reptiles typically associated with hotter and more southerly deserts, like the Mojave. The conditions in the region are such that several endemic species, which occur nowhere else in the world, can be found here.”
A free visitor center is located in downtown St. George at 10 N. 100 East. Not only can you find all the information necessary to explore this Washington County treasure, you can also learn about local wildlife, plants, ecosystems and the purpose of the HCP as well as enjoy a preview of the Reserve through impressive exhibits and presentations to small groups by the Reserve’s expert staff. Regular visitor center hours are 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday.
And, a not-so-gentle reminder … for your own safety, make certain you are adequately prepare to explore the Reserve with proper footwear, a wide brimmed hat and plenty of water. It can’t be stressed enough … it’s really, really hot in Washington County from mid-April until early November.
Whether its history, 360-degee vistas, or hiking, biking or horseback riding in the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve, Southern Utah has it all. Fill out the form on this page to reserve your vacation rental!
Do you agree that St. George, Utah is one of ‘America’s Coolest Desert Towns’? We sure do! Travel+Leisure does too! Travel+Leisure mentioned St. George in a recent article here: http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/americas-coolest-desert-towns
When you come and visit us at St. George Resort Rentals, you have endless options on new adventures! Some of the adventures in the desert can include:
- visiting Snow Canyon St. Park
- visiting Zion National Park
- taking a scenic drive to the Grand Canyon’s North Rim
- walking trails through the beautiful St. George red rocks
- escape over to Mesquite for the evening to hit up the Casinos
- enjoy a spa day
- visit one of the areas lake/reservoir to go fishing or other water sports
St. George is an extremely cool dessert town, we will not argue with Travel+Leisure on that at all! As mentioned, there are a number of activities and adventures to be had while staying among the red rocks of St. George, Utah. All you have to do is be willing to try them out! Don’t be afraid of what adventure lies ahead, embrace it, enjoy it, and go full throttle while you’re on vacation! Take it all in while you visit one of ‘America’s Coolest Desert Towns!
Why St. George, Utah for ‘Spring Break’ you ask? Well here are just a few of the MANY reasons why so many people love to escape to St. George as a Spring Break destination:
- The weather is typically 65-70 Degrees and SUNNY!
- St. George is 90 minutes from Las Vegas; 4 hours from Salt Lake City; 6 hours from LA…what are you waiting for? Get on the road…
- There are so many fun and unique things to do that the whole family can do, so choose an adventure that fits you and your group!
- Find your home away from home and stay in a luxurious St. George Resort Rental private home or condo
Some of our favorite activities include:
- Hike/Bike/Walk in the beautiful Red Rocks of Southern Utah
- Atv/jeep tours
- Soak in all the sunshine poolside
- Dine out
- Have a Spa Day
- Scenic drives
- Visit Zion National Park
- Visit historic sites
- Swimming at the pools or the lakes
Anyone who has never been to St. George will experience it one time and want to keep coming back time and time again! So go ahead and hop on the band-wagon and come and stay in one of our luxurious Vacation Rentals St. George and enjoy Spring Break St. Geezy Style!
Let’s face it. With the amount of uncertainties that life offers today, it’s almost impossible to avoid stress. There’s a myriad of causes of stress today, and there’s only so much that can relieve that stress.
It’s actually medical fact that regular vacations (large or small) can drastically decrease the amount of stress in your life and even lower your risk of heart disease. We didn’t make that up.
Spending a week or two, or even a few days, away from your workplace and other areas of stress can help you to relax your mind and body.
From experience, whenever I’ve taken a vacation – making sure priorities are taken care of before I leave – things start to clear up. My perspective on certain things changes. My attitude changes. I smile and laugh more. Most importantly, I feel happier and ready for new challenges. All of that comes from taking a few days away from emails and escaping to somewhere I can relax.
Sunshine is always good during a vacation. It improves your mood and is known to fend off depression. St. George is full of sunshine all year long. When it’s snowing up in Salt Lake, the palm tree are glowing down in St. George. We’re full of vitamin D down here in Southern Utah.
Some people show up at our St. George vacation rentals a bit flustered and impatient. 2 days later, those same people are relaxed, smiling, and enjoying life. I love seeing that!