White Domes Trail | Valley of Fire State Park

  • Updated

White Domes Trail is a short loop hike in Valley of Fire State Park. This hike features a short slot canyon, the remains of an old movie set, and a few beautiful arches. The hike is 1.0 mile long, and can be completed in under an hour. However, there are a few steep places, and the sun can be brutally hot in this part of the world. Make sure to take plenty of water and hike in the cooler parts of the day or year.

White Domes Trail Valley of Fire
The rock formations are so neat on the White Domes Trail.

Hike Info

Rocky Start

The White Domes Trail is all the way at the north end of the road from the Visitor Center. We suggest starting the hoop from the far end of the parking lot and hiking down hill (clockwise). This is the most difficult section of trail, and if you make the climb down, the rest of the hike is easy. If you were to hike in the opposite direction, you’d end up with this steep climb up to the car.

The beginning of the trail is sandy, but then it quickly changes to rocks. Be careful with your sandy shoes on the rocks so that you don’t slip and fall. We enjoyed the unique rock formations as we worked our way down the hill.

The trail begins in the sand.
White Domes Trail Valley of Fire
This trail will be hot in the heat of the day, so be prepared.
There were lots of lizards to spot.

Movie Set

At the bottom of the hill, there is an old wall that was a piece of a movie set (The Professionals, 1966). It isn’t much, but the display includes information about other movies that have been filmed in Valley of Fire State Park including the only Star Trek movie that included both Captain Kirk and Captain Picard.

This sign talks about the movie and the filming.
This is the wall remaining from the movie set.

Slot Canyon

The path turns to the right and walks through the wash. The trail quickly arrives at a short, narrow slot canyon. If this is your first slot canyon, you should be duly impressed, but if you’ve visited others in the southwest, this one seems very short. It is probably fewer than 100 yards from one end to the other. We were grateful for the cooler air inside the slot canyon on the 95 degree day.

White Domes Trail Valley of Fire
Then the trail drops into the wash as it heads to the slot canyon.
The slot canyon is small, but cool.
Slot canyon on the White Domes Trail Valley of Fire
It is so much cooler in temperature inside the slot canyon.

Climb Out

As you exit the slot canyon, the trail continues around to the right. It starts to climb, but slowly. The ascent is much more steady and far less steep than the beginning descent. If you watch closely on the right hand side of the trail, you’ll notice a small arch that you can climb right inside. This is a nice spot for pictures. From some angles, it even looks like a dragon skull. Back across the trail to the left, you may notice another larger arch that is pretty, though it doesn’t photograph well from this distance.

The trail is quite rocky, but well marked.
We loved all of the rocks and arches along this hike.
We really liked this eye of the crocodile.

We enjoyed White Domes Trail in Valley of Fire. It is easy and interesting with several types of features along the way. Be sure to check out our full post on Valley of Fire State Park and its other hikes, too!

Leave a Reply

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Jonathan Nielsen

    This is a fantastic hike I’ve done twice, including a couple years ago with my kids. I actually found the most difficult thing walking in the soft sand.

    1. Natalie Ockey

      I agree. Hiking through the sand is tough!