NevadaRoad TripsUSA

Random Art Exhibit: Seven Magic Mountains

Seven Magic Mountains
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Windows down. Shades on. Beach Boys serenading. Sun dipping down the “purple mountain’s majesty.” I glance over my shoulder and have to do a double-take. What the…? Was that there the last time I drove by? To quote The Emperor’s New Groove: “How long has THAT been there?”

 

How many times does this happen to us? How often do we find ourselves driving on the open road and stumble upon something that catches our eye and makes us take a second glance? And we think about it for a little while until we forget about it. Until we drive by it again. 

 

Once more, we think about how awesome it was. We might even go as far as to make an internal pact that the next time we pass it, we’ll stop and learn about it.

 

Well, I finally had that one day.

 

I make the drive between Salt Lake City and LA frequently, and usually only have to make a few pit stops for gas and nourishment along the way. I’m not sure which trip it was on, but about 30 minutes after I passed the last exit for Las Vegas, I saw a sign for “Seven Magic Mountains.” 

 

Intriguing.

 

Anyone from Southern California is familiar with “Six Flags Magic Mountain.” Was this a satellite of that theme park?

 

I turned my mind back to the road and almost immediately, my vision was arrested by shocking pillars of neon. Just East of the I-15 freeway between the Sloan and Jean, NV exits, seven gigantic, awe-inspiring pillars of rocks are just…there. Nothing else is around it. In the middle of the desert, BOOM! A burst of color.

 

Seven Magic Mountains

 

Crazy. 

 

On this particular trip, I had left LA early enough in the day and wasn’t feeling too rushed. I looked up quick directions to the exhibit and set off. I was so excited! Anyone who knows me understands my love of color (and glitter), and I couldn’t wait to get next to the giants.

 

Seven Magic Mountains

 

After getting my fill of the rocks, I set off again. Sighing in contentment, I couldn’t stop “grinning like an idiot.” I couldn’t wait to tell my friends, coworkers, shoot – the world about these awesome rocks in the desert!

 

So…what exactly are the Seven Magic Mountains? 

 

According to it’s website (yes, rocks have a website), the Seven Magic Mountains are a exhibit featuring seven ~30-foot-tall pillars or totems made from local boulders. The exhibit will be in its current location for 2 years, having been installed in May 2016. Created by Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone, the Seven Magic Mountains are considered a “creative expression of human presence in the desert.” Call them what you will…they’re stunning!


Getting to the Seven Magic Mountains

 

From Las Vegas: Follow I-15 S to Sloan Rd (exit 25). Turn left (east) to Las Vegas Boulevard. Drive approximately 7 miles south on Las Vegas Blvd. The artwork will appear on your left (east).

 

From Los Angeles: Drive north on I-15 to Jean, NV (exit 12).  Turn right (east) on NV-161 toward Las Vegas Blvd. Drive approximately 5 miles north on Las Vegas Blvd. The artwork will appear on your right (east).

 

Seven Magic Mountains

 

What you need to know

 

*There are NO restrooms available at this location. Pump and dump before you arrive, hopefully not in Jean or Sloan…their gas prices are always super high!

 

*Bring water/sunscreen. Even though you won’t be walking super far and playing around, you’re in the middle of the Mojave desert. Be prepared for blistering heat.

 

*Be aware of local wildlife. Snakes may be present, so keep your eyes open. Also, take care to not disturb the flora/fauna in the area. The desert is a delicate ecosystem and we need to take care of it. 

 

*Don’t be rude. Park in the parking lot, not in the street. Don’t tag the rocks. Don’t litter. There will be people around, so plan accordingly.

 

*Lastly – you will be walking along a dirt path. Wheelchairs will literally have to be in “off-roading mode” to make this trek. It’s not far from the parking lot, but you have been warned!

 

Seven Magic Mountains

 

Next time you find yourself on The 15 around Las Vegas, I urge you to make this quick stop. It’s only around for another 18 months!

 

Have you ever seen the Seven Magic Mountains? Would you stop in the middle of the desert to see them?



 

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18 thoughts on “Random Art Exhibit: Seven Magic Mountains

  1. Wow that is so cool! Whenever I am on long drives I always wonder what I would see if I took a random side road. You just never know what your going to stumble upon. I also love your Emperors New Groove comment (love that movie!!!) Having just been to Utah and Nevada I’m sad I missed it but now have a new reason to go back. Great post thanks!

  2. I’ve always seen this on Instagram and have always been curious where these are located. I love the fun and vibrant colors – it’s easy to see why they would stand out in the vast landscape of the desert. That is definitely one worth of going on a road trip for!

  3. I’ve seen so many photos of this structure, and never knew where it was, but now I do! I love the colours and simplicity of it all, and your photos are brilliant. It’s good to know it’ll be there for 2 years, maybe I’ll try to see it before it’s moved elsewhere!

  4. Absolutely love this! I will be in Vegas March 15-18 next year. I will have a chance to see these Seven Magic Mountains. Thank you so much!!!

  5. This is really cool, especially that you found it by chance. Even if it’s quite small and probably you won’t spend too much time there, it still looks amazing. I can understand your amazement from when you first saw them. They do look like sparkles in the desert 😀

  6. I’ve seen these magic mountain on Insta before, they are pretty cool. i love their pop of colour out there in the desert, good tips on avoiding those nearby petrol stations!

  7. I’ve seen pictures of the Seven Magic Mountains on Instagram before but never really knew what they were! What a neat installment in such a magnificent location. I hope all of the foot traffic doesn’t disrupt desert life too much!

  8. I keep seeing this all over Instagram and now I know where it is! Love it so colourful and great pictures. Will definitely have to make a visit next time we get to Vegas – so worth the drive!

  9. This is just so cool and love the bright colours as they pop out in the surrounding. Randomness really is something I crave and having installations or art in any form that stands out and may even be placed for no reason at all, is what makes us think even more about it, or write about it, and that is the magic of it all. I hope whenever I visit there is something similar in the area. Cheers

  10. Whoa! You are awesome!! It really takes such an interest to go hunting for places like this in the middle of nowhere and not covered by any other blogger as well, like 50 Cents wall, UP house etc!!! Hats off to you.
    So basically its a moving art installation. Good that you managed to visit it before it moved. Let me see if its moves near me in future…

  11. Wow these are pretty cool! So colourful and funny it made us think like they are giant jelly beans haha. Never heard of the Seven Magic mountains and quite happy to know it’s there to see next time we are around!

  12. Wow the neon-light Seven Magic Mountains in the middle of the desert certainly look shocking! It’s good to know that there are no toilets in the surrounding area! I’m sure many people driving by would stop out of curiosity, then take lots of pics before suddenly realizing they need a toilet. I know I would! Haha…

  13. Great post! I had a similar experience when I stumbled on Carhenge in western Nebraska about ten years ago. Just some cars stacked up like Stonehenge in the middle of nowhere. Love finding these hidden gems on road trips.

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