The Grand Canyon, Cowboys (Ninjas) and Helicopters
Trip Start Jun 20, 2010
74Trip End Dec 23, 2010
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Where I stayed
Kate and I decided to use some of our wedding money to splash out on a trip to the Grand Canyon in a helicopter coupled with an overnight stay in a ranch. Neither one of us had ever been in a helicopter but flying over and into the Grand Canyon would be something special.
Our day started with a shuttle pickup from our hotel to McCarran Airport. On arrival we had a 15 minute safety video that consisted of 1 min of safety instructions and 14 mins on why we should purchase the DVD of the flight. Instead of paying attention, the whole audience ended up laughing especially with quotes like: "we were DEVASTATED that we didn't just spend $69.00 not to have the memory of the experience" .... needless to say we didn’t fall for that sales pitch.
The helicopter could only take 6 passengers, who all turned out to be English. It was really nice to spend some time with people from home and share stories of what we had all been up to during our various holidays. Ivor made a new friend – Sam – who hopefully we will meet up with in the UK.
The flight path took us over residential Vegas (which was surprisingly large), the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead and into the Grand Canyon passing in front of the Sky Walk and then to our ranch. The flight took just over an hour and was surprisingly smooth. We thought that the trip would be like being in Air Wolf but that wasn’t the case!
It is hard to describe the scenery during the flight. Being in the helicopter gave us an appreciation of how quickly the Nevada landscape can change from a residential Vegas to flat desert, to tall mountains, undulating hills and the wonder that is the Grand Canyon. One thing the flight did do was give us an understanding of how vast a desert can be and also how unforgiving.
Our flight ended with a landing at the Grand Canyon Ranch where we were picked up by non motorised shuttle – horse and cart
After unpacking and a quick wander through the town consisting of a saloon, general store, Sherriff’s department and a hanging quarter, Kate and I headed off on our own to find a cosy place to watch the sunset. We were treated to an amazing view of the sun going down in the desert – the pictures don’t quite show how spectacular it was.
After sunset we headed to the restaurant to have a steak dinner followed by entertainment and marshmallow toasting around the camp fire. Here we should mention that one of the acts was a Japanese guy that described himself as the only Ninja, Rastafarian, Wild Wild West Cowboy in Nevada.... you guessed it – he sang Bob Marley songs for us and he was brilliant.
After the entertainment we went back to our cabin to find frogs everywhere and a massive cockroach – Kate was not happy (luckily we were in a cabin and not in a tepee!!).
The next day saw us rise for an early breakfast and a 9am departure back to Vegas. This time Kate and I sat in the front of the helicopter. Our flight path was pretty much the same as the day before however we were treated to a flyby of the Vegas strip – including seeing the dolphins training at the MirageJ.
Next stop Los Angeles.....