Mt. Charleston bustles with activity on weekends, when visitors drive up from Las Vegas to enjoy snow in the winter and sunshine in the summer. But homeowners say the real magic happens during the week, when the community becomes quiet and peaceful. With few lights to be seen and minimal commercial development, it feels like you can be anywhere in the world — like the Rocky Mountains or the Appalachian Trail — where the wilderness dominates the environment. Mt. Charleston is a timeless destination and a true escape for those who love nature and the invigorating mountain air.
While best known as a scenic day trip and majestic preservation of nature, Mt. Charleston is also an under-the-radar residential paradise immersed in the splendor of the Toiyabe National Forest. Homes vary in both price and lot size, from comfortable cabin retreats to estates that value well over a million dollars. Most of the properties are found among several subdivisions within Kyle Canyon. Elevation is between 7,000 and 8,000 feet with a police station, fire station, elementary school and public library all within minutes of each other. Picnic areas, hiking trails and the Mt. Charleston Lodge, with its fireside lounge and candlelight dining, draw visitors throughout the year.
Lee Canyon sits at an elevation of 8,000 to 8,500 feet and is best known for the Lee Canyon ski and snowboard resort, which offers outdoor activities on 195 acres throughout the year. It’s surrounded by a handful of homes that reflect a true mountain lifestyle. Deer Creek, with an elevation of 8,500 to 9,500 feet is even more remote, rugged and off-the-grid while Cold Creek is a cozy out-of-the-way community with an elevation of 6,000 feet.
Throughout every corner of Mt. Charleston, neighbors know each other by name and look out for one another. Deer are known to roam between properties and it’s possible to spot foxes, jackrabbits, squirrels, elk and perhaps even the occasional mountain lion in between the trees. Under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management in the Spring Mountain National Recreation Area, Mt. Charleston covers more than 56,000 total acres with a peak elevation of just under 12,000 feet.
The landscape is covered with bristlecone pine, white fir, Utah juniper and Joshua trees as well as sagebrush, creosote bush and manzanita. The air is fresh, clean and free of the notorious allergens that settle in the Las Vegas Valley below. No matter what time of year, it’s not uncommon for temperatures to be around 20 degrees cooler than what you’ll find in the metropolitan areas of Southern Nevada.
Having a home on Mt. Charleston is a true escape from the hustle of city life. Unlike other mountain retreats, however, the location manages to be both remote and incredibly convenient at the same time. The shopping centers and grocery stores of northwest Las Vegas or Summerlin are within easy driving distance while the call of the Strip, Downtown or McCarran International Airport can be answered in less than an hour. Find the right home and you can truly have it all on Mt. Charleston.