Hike-in Required
Open Year-round
ADA accessible
Guided tours
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Cathedral Canyon lies just outside the core area of Pahrump just off of the highway to Tecopa.

While the area is easy to reach, its current form is a shell of the place it once was.

In 1971, a former Clark County district attorney named Roland Wiley who had purchased land on the outskirts of Pahrump began work on what would become a popular, and free, roadside attraction in a natural canyon. Wiley would spend years altering the canyon, creating nooks and rooms, painting murals, installing lights, staircases and a suspension bridge, erecting statues, and effectively filling the canyon with a variety of art pieces that all were free to visit. He etched and displayed poems and messages onto the canyon walls, he paved cliff walls and built rooms into the sandstone canyon.

Following Wiley's death in 1994, there was no plan left in place for the upkeep of his Cathedral Canyon project, and slowly efforts to maintain it fell to the wayside. Over the years, the canyon has attracted everyone from explorers, filmmakers, target shooters, looters and vandals. And today, not too much remains of Wiley's project.

It's possible to drive right up to the gates and walk in, to see some of Wiley's changes to the cliff walls not yet erased by vandals and time. Very little art remains, and there are no lights or stairs, however it's still clear to see where each of these existed previously. The 20 foot tall statue of Christ is now headless after decades of target shooters. And the sound of gunshots remains nearly constant through daylight hours from the outdoor range a little further up the road.

Roland Wiley's project is just a shell of what it once was - an example of a roadside attraction in the unlikely setting of Pahrump. Though for those passing through on a drive between Pahrump and Tecopa, it may be worth a stop to get out and see what remains.

There are no amenities of any kind here and cell service is extremely spotty. As a bonus site, on the rim above the canyon is the grave site of Queho, a Native American outlaw storied as being the first mass murderer in the state of Nevada.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass



Unique area.


Heavy vandalism.

Pets allowed



Family friendly


Nearby Adventures

Nearby Lodging + Camping


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