When you think of Las Vegas, you doubtlessly think of casinos and gambling (and if you're not a big fan of crowds, you probably think of the masses of shoving, elbowing, alcohol-swilling people pressing in from all sides...). Las Vegas has a lot to offer that doesn't involve being cooped up inside with crowds though. With some 300 days of sun a year, there are plenty of things to do outdoors. Here's a list of places you can check out:
1. Redrock Canyon
Visit this spot for a scenic drive and some hiking in a canyon formed more than 65 million years ago. There are picnic spots if you want to take a lunch. Redrock Canyon is about 45 minutes from downtown Las Vegas.
2. Buckskin Gulch
A wonderful hike through impressive rock formations, some of them squeezing so close together that you'll have to turn sideways and take off your backpack to negotiate them. The hike changes from year to year (floods come through and change the landscape), and you can expect to negotiate some boulder drops and challenging climbing spots if you go far.
3. Trail Rides
If you'd like to let someone else doing the walking (in particular, a horse), you can find several local outfits offering trail rides through the surrounding canyons and desert. Go for the hour or go for the whole day (meals too). Whatever your backside can handle.
4. Mountain Biking
Sign up for a guided tour or go off on your own. There are lots of trails to choose from. Try an outing in Redrock Canyon or head over to the Grand Canyon for a multi-day biking trip.
5. Valley of Fire State Park
Located about 50 miles northeast of Las Vegas, the Valley of Fire park features 150-million-year-old dunes and formations made from eroded sandstone. Under the sun's rays, these stone monoliths often appear to be on fire. The park has campsites if you'd prefer to avoid the hustle and bustle of Vegas hotels.