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Graffiti at Red Rock Canyon: 'It's up to the rest of us to try to prevent that'

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Just as spring break kicks off in the Las Vegas valley, visitors stumble upon graffiti along a popular hiking trail in Red Rock Canyon.

If the vandal is caught, officials with the Bureau of Land Management say they will prosecute.

With nearly 2 million visitors last year, the vast majority of people coming to Red Rock respect the land. It's the few who don't that really stand out.

“People come from all over the world to see this, and we live here and we take it for granted,” said visitor Ken Fowler, who says he comes out here every week.

RELATED | Vandals deface Red Rock's Oak Creek Trail

From the wildlife to the scenery, it's one of southern Nevada's special gems. So when Fowler hears about intentional destruction, his reaction is immediate.

“It's extremely irritating,” he said. “Unfortunately, there's people who don't get it, and it's up to the rest of us to try to prevent that.”

Over the weekend, visitors on horseback snapped these pictures near Oak Creek Trail.

“It's a problem that comes with more visitorship,” said Heather Fisher of the nonprofit Save Red Rock. “It's going to bring more problems.”

Fisher says once a month volunteers hike in to clean up what vandals leave behind – and it's not always easy.

A teenage boy was ordered to pay thousands of dollars in restitution after he was caught and convicted of defacing Red Rock areas in 2011.

“When you deface it with graffiti, you have to clean it off and you're also cleaning off some of that natural oxidation,” Fisher said. “So it changes the color and look of nature.”

RELATED | Volunteers clean up Red Rock Canyon defaced with graffiti

This week the Conservation Area is packed. Spring break for Clark County students coupled with ideal weather bring more visitors to the area.

Fisher says she hopes people understand what's at stake.

“That's why we have our non-profit,” she said. “Because it needs help, it needs protection.”

If you find graffiti at Red Rock, call (702) 515-5365.

BLM Rangers ask that you take pictures of what you see and write down the specific area.

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