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Overview | Griffith Shadow Loop | Lovell Canyon, Nevada

Adventure to occur Spring or Fall soon!

Griffith Shadow Loop is a great introduction for those planning additional adventures up and down Lovell Canyon and along its surrounding ridges. Even if you just want to experience the canyon base and heights, this is your trail with spectacular 360-degree views at nearly every point along the way!

Clockwise or Counterclockwise?

My experience is that The Griffith Shadow Loop works best when taken clockwise, staying to your left as you ascend the West side of Lovell Canyon. In this direction you will find yourself on an actual trail all the way to the high point on the West side of Lovell Canyon, and then descending into the canyon’s main wash below. You at least have the first half of the entire loop under your belt by the time you hit the wash. In addition, you will have witnessed the most spectacular views afforded on the trail.

Upon descending into the wash, your main goal is to get back home! Head downward in the wash and watch for the connection with The Lovell Canyon Trail. That connection is marked by a rocky outcrop on the West side of the wash with a sign at its base. To make matters complicated, at least following a season of heavy rains where all signs of cairns and trails were buried in tall brush in the wash, the only way you could descend the wash was to descend along the East side. This is why you need to be watching for that rocky outcrop across the wash, your only indication that it’s time to cross through a sea of brush to the West side in order to reconnect with The Lovell Canyon Trail.

So, navigating the lower portion of the trail can be a bit frustrating. However, if you took the trail clockwise, you at least feel a sense of achievement in reaching the high point with the spectacular views during the first half of your adventure.

Admittedly, parts of the trail are confusing, and still to be worked out during an upcoming Fall or Spring season! Then I’ll give you a description that is not dependent on whether or not nature has erased part of the route. 

Trailhead Directions | Griffith Shadow Loop | Lovell Canyon, Nevada

Take Hwy 160 from Las Vegas toward Pahrump. The highway ascends over a “hump” (the Potosi Mountain area). There’s a saying around here, “Over the hump to Pahrump”. Well, you’ve just traveled over that hump. Around 4-5 miles from the point where the highway begins to descend toward Pahrump there is a well-marked sign on the right for Lovell Canyon Road. Proceed 12 miles up the well-paved road until the pavement ends and an unpaved road branches off to your left 1/4th mile from the official Lovell Canyon Trailhead which will be on the right. There is ample parking across from the trailhead which will be on your right.

The actual Handy Peak Loop Trail begins about 2.9 miles up from The Lovell Canyon Trailhead.

Trail Observations | Griffith Shadow Loop | Lovell Canyon, Nevada

Adventure to occur Spring or Fall soon!

Griffith Shadow Loop | Lovell Canyon, Nevada
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Griffith Shadow Loop | Lovell Canyon, Nevada
Griffith Shadow Loop takes you up the West side of Lovell Canyon for spectacular views up and down the canyon with Griffith Peak clearly visible ahead at the summit of Sexton Ridge. You'll then descend into the base of Lovell Canyon, cross the central wash and experience the East side of the canyon. Great introduction to Lovell Canyon!
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