Sin City: Vegas part 1

Las Vegas Travel Blog

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Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam

Ji and I touched down in Las Vegas on a Tuesday shortly before lunchtime. Since check in at our hotel wasn’t until 3, we decided to go pick up the rental car and try to find Red Rock Canyon, supposedly a canyon… of red rock…. 20 or so km outside of Vegas. We hit the road in a Suzuki SX4 and were soon on our way, missing our turn and getting a tour of some back road in Nevada. We finally got back on track, paid the $5 per car entrance fee, and started down the ‘scenic drive’ around Red Rock Canyon. We stopped a few times for photo ops and had a really great time. Such a different type of scenery than we’re used to. Good stuff.

 

Back to Vegas and on to our hotel, the Stratosphere. Comprised of a hotel/casino with the tallest tower on the strip, I was looking forward to going up and seeing the views while riding the three insanely scary looking rides perched on top. Unfortunately (er….or fortunately), 80 kph winds shut down all the rides  so Ji and I had to content ourselves with watching the sun set the mountains and clouds on fire.. Beautiful!

 

The next morning we contemplated sticking around to see if the rides would be open, but gamely decided that getting to the Grand Canyon was more important.

Sunset over Vegas
To the road!

 

30km outside of Vegas is the engineering marvel of the Hoover Dam. We had to stop for a second at a security check before going over the dam. I wasn’t stopped for a search so I guess I fit the ‘non terrorist’ profile. ‘Yay’.  

 

I’d heard from a guy who knew a guy that wrote a blog that parking was free on the Arizona side so I kept on trucking and sure enough, 50 meters past a $7 parking lot was a free parking lot right beside the ‘Welcome to Arizona’ sign. We walked back down and snapped a few pics and marveled at the wonder that was this giant wall of dam. They’re currently building an extraordinary arched bridge directly in front of the dam which will no doubt be a sight in and of itself when it’s finished in a few months. Took more pics of that than the dam because it would actually fit into a shot. The dam was just too big to get a pic of it all!

 

Seeing how long it took us to get here, and knowing we still had another 350 km to go, we hopped back in the car with the Grand Canyon on our minds. Sounded grand.

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Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam
Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam
From atop the Stratosphere
From atop the Stratosphere
Sunset over Vegas
Sunset over Vegas
Vegas
Vegas
Red Rock Canyon
Red Rock Canyon
Red Rock Canyon
Red Rock Canyon
New York, New York. In Vegas
New York, New York. In Vegas
Paris in Vegas
'Paris' in Vegas
Paris in Vegas
"Paris" in Vegas
Bellagio fountains.
Bellagio fountains.
Las Vegas Hotels & Accommodations review
A fun place to stay. Very cheap ~$31 (weekday), friendly staff, nice, clean room, and lots of perks. Free entry into the tower and two-for-one ride ti… read entire review
Las Vegas
photo by: maka77