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Popular recreation area on Mt. Charleston set to reopen

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Popular recreation area on Mt. Charleston set to reopen

By Denise Wong. CREATED May 21, 2013

Spring Mountains, NV (KTNV) -- It's been closed for nearly two years, but a popular recreation area on Mount Charleston is finally about to reopen, just in time for Memorial Day weekend.

In the shadow of Cathedral Rock, there's more to see now than just trees and nature. There are 2.5 more miles of trails to discover.

"More people can come in here and picnic and enjoy this site than could before," said Mike Balen, with the U.S. Forest Service.

He's talking about the newly renovated Cathedral Rock Picnic Area and Trailhead, which had been closed since September 2011, as it went through $8 million worth of improvements.

"We're really excited about that. It's just going to be a really big change that people will see when they come here," said Balen.

The transformation features several new amenities, including 80 individual picnic sites with grills and prep tables, bilingual interpretive panels and 13 restroom buildings with flushable toilets.

Forest Service officials say the upgrades aren't just about providing more convenience for the public.

"We're also protecting their important resources in their backyard," says Christie Kalkowski, public information officer for the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest.

The U.S. Forest Service is hoping the transformed recreation area will be a big hit with the 54,000 people expected to visit through this summer. And for visitors in years to come.

Denise Wong

Denise Wong

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Denise Wong is a general assignment reporter for Action News. Catch her live reports on Good Morning Las Vegas.