Flying a drone in Las Vegas became trickier in 2019. Fox5vegas.com reported that the FAA’s new drone-flying regulations made it all but illegal to fly drones recreationally in 90% of the Las Vegas Valley.
The good news is that recreational flyers can actually still fly drones legally in Las Vegas, but in only uncontrolled airspaces — as long as you fly under 400 feet.
With that in mind, we at Sky View Las Vegas have compiled a list of the four best spots to fly your drone here in Sin City. Even better, these locations have uncontrolled airspace! So what are you waiting for? Check them out below:
Red Rock Canyon
Red Rock Canyon is just 30 minutes away from the heart of the city and is one the most popular hiking spots in the state of Nevada. Featured in this list of things to do in Las Vegas, the Red Rock Canyon Conservation Area is a great place to unwind, especially after a night of partying on The Strip, a tough time at the poker tables, or an unfortunate spin on the slots.
The canyon’s gorgeous scenery — towering cliffs, red-colored rock formations, and fossilized sand dunes — is perfect for a relaxing hike, so why not take your drone with you as well? The desert offers an expansive area for unimpeded flight, while the rock formations will test your piloting skills. Plus, you get to capture a panoramic view of one of Nevada’s premier tourist attractions. Just stay away from no-fly zone wilderness areas!
Gold Strike Hot Springs
The Gold Strike Hot Springs is one of Vegas’s better-kept secrets. Getting to the springs will have you going on what The LA Times describes as an arduous hiking trail. The six-mile hike descends some 1,500 feet through narrow crevasses.
If you can handle the trail, the reward is a drone pilot’s paradise: crystal-clear water surrounded by canyon walls and wildflowers. Try to go in the springtime, when the wildflowers turn to gold and red and the canyon walls are covered with colorful algae.
Seven Magic Mountains
The Seven Magic Mountains art installation created by Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone is another popular Vegas attraction. It is a septet of towering columns made of multi-hued rocks placed on top of one another. This art installation is a great spot for flying drones because the backdrop of Rondinone’s towers is the Jean Dry Lake and the surrounding Mojave Desert. This means there’s a large area to fly around and lots of scenic views to capture.
The area is relatively flat as well, meaning you can practice here the pointers we shared in our ‘7 Tips for Excellent Drone Landscape Photography’ post. One tip is to look to fly and shoot during the golden hour, aim for symmetry, and keep your drone as low to the ground as possible. Just make sure you visit soon because rumor has it that Seven Magic Mountains will only be on display until the end of 2021.
On the outskirts of Vegas is the 8,517-foot Potosi Mountain. It isn’t as popular as Red Canyon, but it’s definitely worth checking out if you want to challenge yourself. The climb will be difficult – once you get to the top, however, you’ll be greeted by picture-perfect views and lots of open space to fly your drone.
Just make sure that you keep an eye out for and stay away from the FM radio towers on the adjacent peak, as flying near them is dangerous, and can get you in trouble. Other than that, you’ll definitely enjoy flying here.
Do you know any other great drone-flying spot in Vegas that we missed? If so, let us know in the comments section below.