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Mount Charleston Recreation Areas Get Facelift | News

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Mount Charleston Recreation Areas Get Facelift

LAS VEGAS -- There are some changes underway at a popular mountain getaway for southern Nevadans.

"Every campground is full," said Tonya Carroll. The Las Vegas mom had hoped to escape with her children, Sarah, Evan and Abby, to Mount Charleston.

She found her favorite spot, Kyle Canyon Campground, closed. 

"We actually drove by the first time and we saw the big 18-wheeler. I saw that and I thought something must be going on there," Carroll said.

Something is going on. Two campgrounds are being merged and U.S. Forest Service workers are bringing all trails, buildings and parking lots, up to code.

As it turns out, Carroll's favorite camping spot is in the middle of a flood plain and will remain closed. Due to safety issues, the former campground will turned into a picnic area.

Voters approved investing millions of dollars to make the changes to the somewhat rudimentary trails and parking lots.

Hikers, on Friday, were already enjoying a brand new parking lot at the popular Mary Jane Falls Trail. There is now organized parking and bathrooms.

 "It's going to be a big impact," project manager Mike Balen said.

Until the work is finished, areas normally opened for hiking and picnicking may be closed.

"Before they come up, they should check and make sure the sites they want to go to are open," Balen said.

The mountain offers southern Nevadans a nice escape to cooler temperatures and a chance to see wildlife. 

"It's already great. We love coming up here, but now it's going to be that much better," Carroll said.

The U.S. Forest Service has set up a website to help tourists and residents with the construction and upgrades. The website also lists activities on the mountain and a recreation report