Water Flowing from Chute at Obstacle Rock

Waterfall behind Obstacle Rock to Right of Rabbit Hole

Fletcher Peak Ridge above Fletcher Canyon

Water Flowing at first Trail Crossing

Fletcher Canyon, one of the official hikes in the Spring Mountains NRA begins about 1.7 miles past the Kyle Canyon traffic circle in front of the Spring Mountain Gateway Visitor Center. May is a good time to go up in the lower elevations of the Spring Mountains and view the snow melt gushing down the washes that are usually dry during the summer months. Fletcher Canyon is one of these washes but depending on the previous winter snowfall and the spring rainfall, the amount of water in the canyon differs greatly. Anxious to see what the crazy winter and spring Las Vegas weather has served up within these walls, two club members headed up into the mountains on a beautiful day.

Water Flowing along Trail Up

We got to the trailhead around 7:45am and had our choice of parking spaces. This was my first endeavor into the mountains this spring so, as soon as I began hiking up the trail, I felt the altitude!

Nice little Waterfall

The two of us are nursing foot injuries so our pace was slow and comfortable – good for altitude acclimating, we told each other!

Water flows alongside Trail

Water at Canyon Bend (Trail/Wash Junction)

Walking and talking, we hiked up the very familiar trail in anticipation of what we might find further up the canyon. However, at the first wash crossing … maybe second … there was water flowing. Hmm. This is special! Already, I started warming up the camera. We found rocks lying just below the surface of the water to use for crossing. Now, as we hiked, we heard the water flowing with small waterfalls not far from the trail. There was one more crossing before we reached the "trail hills." Then, it helped to know the trail well because the water was hindering a clear path in a couple of places. Staying to the left is a good mantra here.

The Trail inside the Narrows

At the canyon bend where the trail and wash become one and the side trails run out, the water covered our path. The first real obstacle was the log/rock jam. Yes, there is an up and around trail that is steep and slippery. But, we managed to go straight up the usual scramble … in the running water.

Approach to Log/Rock Jam

I knew that the water was going to be in our way for the remaining of the hike up to Obstacle Rock so, why not use the waterproofness of our hiking shoes and step in the shallows. (It'll be kind of like the Zion Narrows! … Sort of.)

Canyon, Water and Evergreens

Another Nice little Waterfall

During the whole hike, I think some water dripped over the rim of my shoes once or twice. We had to be creative in our choice of routes around the little waterfalls and deeper pools. However, TBH, avoiding the water was only secondary to the absolute beauty that said water was creating in this usually dry environment. The camera was well-warmed up by this time. I hope that these photos help you imagine the canyon as we saw it today. If not, go take a hike before the water runs out! When we entered the Lower Narrows (where the canyon walls are not far apart), the water was unavoidable. Shoes got wet.

Water flows along Canyon Wall

Then, we turned that last corner and saw the water was gushing down the chute into a big splash at the bottom! Above the chute is Obstacle Rock.

Chute at Obstacle Rock

We stood in awe at the sight then clambered up the slippery log on the right side of the chute. Quickly, we looked toward Obstacle Rock and saw the waterfall pouring down on its right side.

Down from top of Chute

This was an amazing scene. We took each other's photos, took a small break, then headed back. Definitely a scene that we will tell stories about for many more years. On the way back, we saw more hikers. Some were not wearing proper shoes and clothing for the hike. Probably didn't stop them from having fun!
4 miles; 850' gain; 2.25 hours
NOTE: The South Loop/Cathedral Rock Trailhead gate is open. But, word is that there has been a recent avalanche on the Cathedral Rock Trail.

Picking our way back through Narrows

A little wet, but it beats climbing up and around!

Charleston Peak not ready for Prime Time