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Virgin River Landing Road
Backroads Around Las Vegas, Gold Butte
Virgin River Landing Road
Fisherman's Cove Road, approaching fork in the road (view SW)

Overview

Virgin River Landing Road (Road 112) is a 3.8-mile graded road that runs east-west between Fisherman's Cove Road (Road 113) and the Virgin River. The road is entirely on public land, beginning on lands managed by the BLM and ending on lands managed by Lake Mead National Recreation Area.

The road is maintained, but there is one steep, rocky hill that is barely 2WD in a jeep. I drove it in 2WD to prove that I could, but I'd use 4WD next time to keep the wheels from spinning. The very end of the road goes out into deep blow sand, and 4WD is required in that area, but drivers need not go that far.

This road provides access to the Virgin River and the Gentry Ranch hike, but otherwise it is an in-and-out road.

Link to road map.

Virgin River Landing Road
Signs announcing the fork (view W)

Watch Out

Other than the standard warnings about hiking in the desert, ... this road is fairly safe, but it runs into a wild and remote area without services of any kind (no restrooms, no water, no gas, no food). Bring what you need to survive. Be prepared and be self-reliant. Someone will find you eventually if you stay on main roads, but be prepared to survive alone for a day or more on side roads. Cell phones should work along most of the road.

There is one steep, rocky hill that is barely 2WD in a jeep, and the end of the road goes out into deep blow sand where 4WD is required.

While out, please respect the land and the other people out there, and try to Leave No Trace of your passage. Also, this is a remote area, so be sure to bring the 10 Essentials.

Virgin River Landing Road
Road forks, Virgin River Landing Road bends right (view SW)

Getting to the Roadhead

Virgin River Landing Road is located out in Gold Butte northeast of Lake Mead, about 1-3/4 hours from of Las Vegas.

From Las Vegas, drive out to Gold Butte. From Highway 170 at Gold Butte Road, drive south on Gold Butte Road for 14.3 miles to a signed intersection with Fisherman's Cove Road.

Turn right and drive southwest 7.1 miles on Fisherman's Cove Road to a signed fork in the road. At the fork, Fisherman's Cove Road stays left while Virgin River Landing Road bends right.

Virgin River Landing Road
Road signs at the fork (view W)

The Road

From the fork with Fisherman's Cove Road (Table 1, Site 1654), Virgin River Landing Road forks off to the right and runs west towards the Virgin River.

Shortly, the road bends hard to the right to rus northwest as it drops to cross a broad gravel wash. Climbing out the other side, the road climbs a steep hillside where the road is narrow and covered with rocks and gravel. With the loose rocks, this section is barely passable in a 2WD-HC vehicle, and next time I'll use 4WD.

After the steep part, the road climbs towards the top of the ridge, then bends left and starts a long descent towards the Virgin River. Initially, the roadway provides grand views west towards the Virgin River Valley, Valley of Fire, and the Muddy Mountains in the distance. As the road descends, however, the views get more and more hemmed in by the surrounding hillsides

Virgin River Landing Road
Road signs at the fork (view W)

After about 2.7 miles, signs announce that the road is entering Lake Mead National Recreation Area, and in that area, the road drops into the canyons. The road is graded, but some parts are flash flooded with loose gravel lying on the road.

The canyon eventually opens onto the flood plain of the Virgin River and immediately forks. Without 4WD, this is a good place to stop because both forks run down through loose gravel and deep blow sand.

Staying left, the road runs down to a post and cable fence that directs drivers right and over to a turn-about loop. The river lies in the distance, through a thicket of saltcedar trees, some 0.28 miles away in 2016. The river meanders on the flood plain, so it might be closer in the future.

Staying right, the road runs down to another post and cable fence and over to a turn-about loop, which is the trailhead for the Gentry Ranch hike. From there, hikers can follow the old road northwest and eventually approach the river near the toe of Black Ridge

Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Tires spinning in 2WD on steep hill with lots of gravel (view NW)
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road

Returning up Virgin River Landing Road

Virgin River Landing Road Virgin River Landing Road
Virgin River Landing Road
Approaching Fisherman's Cove Road (view E)
Fisherman's Cove Road
More to come ...

Table 1. Highway Coordinates Based on GPS Data (NAD27; UTM Zone 11S). Download Highway GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Wpt. Location UTM Easting UTM Northing Elevation (ft) Point-to-Point Distance (mi) Cumulative Distance (mi) Verified
1654 Fisherman Cove Rd at Virgin River Landing Rd 743014 4044648 1,621 0.00 0.00 GPS
1655 Virgin River Landing Rd forks (end) 739421 4043155 1,197 3.77 3.77 GPS

Happy Hiking! All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 160704

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