Roaring ATVs charge up Southwest Desert sand dunes in a storm of golden particles. Miles away, intrepid explorers rappel down the sheer cliffs of the Valley of Fire. Elsewhere, kayakers drift across the placid surface of Lake Mead in the sunset, and passengers inside a helicopter witness the majesty of the Grand Canyon from the breathtaking angle normally reserved for sightseeing birds. These seemingly disparate adventures have one thing in common: the people who imagined them. Each trek was dreamed up by the founders and guides of Awesome Adventures, who see the landscape of Nevada and Utah not as harsh and wild, but as a source of endless entertainment and education. The enthusiastic staffers—who specialize in recreations ranging from rock climbing to whitewater rafting—encourage visitors and locals alike to step outside the bounds of the city and explore exciting new vistas.
The soaring peaks and red-rock lava flows of the River Mountains. The snaking gravel paths that form a ghostly memorial to a Hoover Dam railroad. The rippling waters of Lake Mead. At All Mountain Cyclery, these local sights headline daylong bike and kayak tours of the wilderness surrounding Boulder City. Located only a 30-minute drive from the famed Las Vegas strip and 10 minutes from Lake Mead, the cyclery rents out Specialized bikes and sells two-wheelers by big other big names, including KHS and Redline. With a fresh set of pedals beneath their feet, cyclists can confidently cruise down the manmade Bootleg Canyon single track. Gravity tows bikes down the steep path at full throttle, leaving riders free to focus on navigating the challenging terrain and throwing their sneakers at distracting birds.
Framed by the amber peaks of distant mountains, Wildhorse Golf Club's 18-hole course winds through rugged desert wilderness for 6,525 yards of challenging tee-to-green terrain. Eight ponds loom at the edges of seven holes, including the majestic ninth, where water hazards occupy both sides of the fairway as it draws nearer to the green, luring wayward approaches and contributing to the hole's rating as the course's most difficult. Sands, rocks, and tumbleweeds with dreams of becoming golf balls await misguided orbs in the unsown desert that flanks each pristine fairway, offsetting the course's lack of imposing tree lines.
Imbued with more history than Gene Sarazen's divot-tool time portal, the course counts Howard Hughes among its past owners and was once a regular stop on the PGA Tour, where players enjoyed its beautiful scenery and the compassionate waterfowl that helped earn the course honors as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.
Course at a Glance:
18-hole, par-70 course
Length of 6,525 yards from the farthest tees
Course rating of 71.4 from the farthest tees
Slope rating of 136 from the farthest tees
Four tee options
The fitness instructors, personal trainers, and nutritionists at ClubSport wield the foundations of total-body wellness: detailed knowledge and cutting-edge equipment. Group classes such as cardio kickboxing, cycling, and circuit training showcase routines for all fitness levels, seven days a week. Personal-training sessions, meanwhile, bring help exercisers develop their own fitness plans and face down the imaginary knight that guards every piece of weight-training equipment.
ClubSport also transforms bodies outside the fitness studio and weight room. A self-described resort-style aquatic center features several lap and exercise pools where swimmers can fine-tune their breaststrokes and favorite shark calls. At an on-site spa, massage therapists ease muscle tension with modalities ranging from hot stone and prenatal to trigger point and reflexology.
A lush oasis in the Mojave Desert, Black Mountain Golf & Country Club has challenged golfers for more than half a century. Today, players send balls hurtling against the backdrop of the Black Mountains, taking care to avoid hitting the water or slicing their ball into the Las Vegas strip 25 miles away. Since each course features its own unique style, players must adjust their games accordingly. Whereas one course tempts sharpshooters with several birdie opportunities, the other features the most water, requiring golfers to select their clubs carefully and shake off the mirages of caddies appearing as khaki-wearing cacti.
Course at a Glance: * Two nine-hole courses, each with a par of 36 * Four sets of tees per hole * Maximum 18-hole length of just under 6,600 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 71.1 from the back tees * Course slope of 129 from the back tees
An almost ethereal glow bathes the Self Quest Institute. Hardwood floors glimmer softly in its light, which also reveals an Oriental-style fan on the wall. The studio can't really claim dance or yoga as its main event, since a wide variety of both unfold within its walls. It offers ballet for teens, kids, and adults; for strictly the older crowd, instructors lead lyrical, modern, and jazz as well as Bollywood and burlesque lessons. On the meditative end of the spectrum, students can try yoga classes, PiYo—Pilates and yoga—sessions, and organized meditation.