This subject is highly dependent on where you live and what your shift requirements are. You can make as little as $11/hour or as high as $40/hr including shift differential, education rewards, etc. I believe the average with a few years of experience is somewhere in the $20-21 range. My hospital starts new grads just above $14/hour.We have a max around $26(Level 3 nurse--clinical ladder). How long it takes to get to the top varies on your annual merit. We have a clinical ladder that adds 8% for level 2 and another 8% for level 3. These levels require significant contribution to the unit/organization.
Some hospitals compress their salaries so the bulk of your annual raises come in the first 3-5 years, then you are "topped out". Then you generally only get more with an accross the board wage adjustment. Our average nurse takes about 8-10 years to top out.