Our second day in Nevada, State # 28, we rented a car and drove to Hoover Dam. Fascinating drive...this is desert terrain totally foreign to me. "It might as well be Mars!"
When you visit this dam, I hope you have a beautiful day, like we did. It is best to go early...as the day goes on, the crowds grow. When we left, the cars on the 2-lane road leading to Hoover Dam were bumper-to-bumper inching their way along to this attraction...same thing on the Arizona, State # 3, side. (The bridge is now complete...it was in a Super Bowl commercial!)
Of course, we took the tour down into the dam. Our guide was, "Eeyore," I've changed his name to protect his family, but this guy was so negative it was comical. He pointed out every crack and leak along the way and talked about budget cutbacks stalling maintenance on the elevators. "OH, BOTHER!"
Speaking of negative, we had planned on using our rental car to drive into Arizona and see the Skyway Bridge over the Grand Canyon. The shuttle driver to the airport told us, "Do NOT tell the agent where you're taking the car, because he won't give it to you." Apparently, cars that travel onto the reservation to the bridge never return...in one piece!
We took his advice and spoke nothing of our plans. We set out for the dam determined to go on to the Skyway Bridge. An hour later, we stopped at the park ranger station for the Lake Mead Recreation Area, where we saw a SUV smoking and leaking oil onto the parking lot. Inside we chatted with "Ranger Rebecca" and she informed us "off the record," that we should NOT go to the bridge...the reasons why included -
- the smoking car in the parking lot had just been there;
- it is NOT actually over the Grand Canyon;
- you will pay $25 to access the reservation;
- then you will pay $25 to use their road (dirt path) to the bridge;
- you will pay $15 (now $29.95 ) each to walk out onto the bridge for 15 minutes, ONLY;
- then you will pay $25 to have your picture taken on the bridge (cameras strictly prohibited);
- and if you need to be towed off the reservation that will be another $50.
NOTE: Check out their website and you may be able to see the digitally enhanced presentation. It is what sold me on the idea. http://www.grandcanyonskywalk.com/
As it turned out, we had a great time exploring this strange and beautiful land.
Our drive back into Vegas took us through the parts of town where "CSI" is filmed...we hurried along and were relieved to be back on The Strip.
Obviously, most visitors to this city are here to gamble. I should tell you that we did try our hand at the tables and I am glad to report that we came out $33 ahead! And in case you are interested, the Bellagio had the nicest casino floor, when we were there. (The ARIA, right next door, has since opened.)
WARNING: The stench of tobacco smoke is awful in these casinos; that was the main reason we did not spend much time in them.
Other tourists, like us, are here for the incredible shows. We saw 4 and yes, one was a topless revue!
Go see this show, inside the RIO, it will not disappoint. And afterwards, they are both very generous and genuinely funny gentlemen, talking with the audience in the lobby. We have an autographed program!
Before I end my final post from Nevada, I would like to tell you "Lady Luck" was certainly with us on our journey and to say "Viva Las Vegas" and thank you to a few special people:
- Andrew - for all your travel advice...Enjoy your visit next month!
- Anita & Stephen - for telling us all about Jean-Philippe Patisserie...and watching our home.
- Claci & Jeff - for "insisting" we see O!
- Thompson Framing - for making our menu collection...delectable!
And I feel sure you can hardly wait to read about State # 27...Nebraska! So next time...
Our mutual view of Omaha's Wild Kingdom