A temporary emergency closure goes into effect Friday for Goldstrike Canyon and Arizona Hot Spring trails at Lake Mead National Recreation Area.
A similar closure was put in place during the summer of 2014 after public safety incidents doubled from 2013. This year, rangers have conducted 14 search and rescues on the two trails, including five in the past week.
“People are miscalculating their ability to hike these strenuous trails in the summer, and it’s not only endangering their lives, it’s endangering the lives of other visitors and rescue crews,” said Patrick Gubbins, acting superintendent of the recreation area. “These areas will reopen in the fall, when temperatures are cooler.”
During the closure visitors can still access the hot springs via the Colorado River.
Goldstrike Canyon Trail is on National Park Service and Bureau of Reclamation managed lands, and the agencies are working in partnership on this closure. The National Park Service managed lands will be closed through Sept. 8. The closure on Bureau of Reclamation managed lands in Goldstrike Canyon is in place Monday through Sept. 8.
The area known as White Rock Canyon has multiple trails leading to the Arizona Hot Spring, Liberty Bell Arch and the Colorado River. Goldstrike Canyon is a strenuous hike, requiring bouldering and climbing. It leads to Goldstrike and Nevada hot springs and the Colorado River.
The River Mountains Loop and Historic Railroad trails remain open. Hiking is discouraged during the summer months. Those who choose to hike are encouraged to follow summer safety tips found online at http://www.nps.gov/lake/planyourvisit/summer-hiking.htm.