The tallest trees in Red Rock Canyon, ponderosa pines (Pinus ponderosa), can reach heights of over 200 feet. Ponderosa pines can be found within canyons and along spring-fed drainages. These trees feature long pine needles and prickly points on their cones. The thick bark is brown-to-orange and protects the trees from wildfire. On a warm sunny day often you can smell a vanilla to butterscotch scent within the bark; scientists think this might be a chemical reaction from the sap warming up. The ponderosa pines found at Red Rock Canyon are thought to be relic trees from when Las Vegas was a cooler place during the Ice Age and trees dominated the mountain & canyon landscapes.

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