Day 15 - Viva Las Vegas

Trip Start May 11, 2010
Trip End Jul 23, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Nevada
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Day 15

Grand Canyon to Las Vegas

Busy day today, early up for the helicopter trip. The hotel was good, we had a suite for some reason which was pleasant. Best bed so far. The shower was weird though, I reckon you could write a book on the different ways the showers work. Anyway, after sorting out that we headed for the Express Breakfast which is a little weak, but the restaurant was full of germans so ve left and ate in the room instead. We were staying about 5 mins from the tiny airport so arrived too early and sat and watched the comings and goings which was fun. Ours arrived and we were on our own, must have been short booked that slot. So the next 30 mins or so was pretty spectacular and a fantastic way to see the canyon. To top it off we took off to Hey You, so I did find Pink Floyd after all although that was a little bittersweet for Tina especially.

Great flight though, clear blue skies – plenty of pictures to bore everyone with, nothing static quite catches the moment.

Yesterday we wanted to know if there were any genuine ghost towns nearby and today after seeing an aircraft museum wondered where that airplane graveyard is. Turns out there are hundreds of ghost towns, mainly from gold and mineral prospectors who found the minerals ran out – there is even a ghost town website. If we get a chance we'll take a look. They must be more interesting than the many 'historical markers’ we passed today which just point mile into the desert at nothing in particular. The airplane graveyards are in Tucson which is too far south in Arizona for this trip. Shame.

Also, forgot to mention in Page we were next to a street which had at least 12 churches all next door – Methodist, Baptist, Lutheran, Unitarian, Episcopal, Nazarene, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Immaculate Heart, First Assembly of God, Latter Day Saints. Amazing, just about every major Christian movement except catholic in the space of about 200 yards…

On the subject of forgetting, we were taking a nice evening walk round the south rim of the grand canyon behind two old hikers who were chatting away about tomorrows hike when one turned round, 70 at least this guy, and snot-rocketed about 10 yards from mum! She dry heaved for the next half hour which was a bit of an over reaction but, well, what a liberty.

Anyway, after the helicopter we headed off for a 4hr 30m drive. Two roads and 200 odd miles. Nothing exceptional en route sadly, After an hour or so we stopped at Bearizona to get some bear pictures having failed dismally in Yellowstone. At least these ones can’t hide! The cubs were cute. The park was nice but only about 25% finished. Never mind, another time. The staff were all very friendly…

After another hour or so we had a stop off which turned out to be a decent and cheap buffet. More bug removal which Tina keeps snapping. Then back on the road for another couple of hours. Tina keeps asking who put the kipper in the washer water. It does seem to reek of fish after each bug washing session so she is now convinced they use fish somehow in the water (the tea was a bit fishy for a few days too but that was probably the microwave). Just down the road I realised the seat had moved so was fiddling around, Tina reminded me this was not such a great idea as in SLC I’d idly messed with the headrest and couldn’t get it down. Spent the next 5 miles with my head cricked looking over the top of my sunglasses to drive. Haha serves me right.

Got to the Hoover Dam which is big. Very big. We’d seen a making of film a few days earlier so it was good to see it up close. The guy that ran the project brought it in more than a year ahead of schedule and got a $4m bonus (in today’s terms). The average worker’s wage was 75 cents per hour. After a trip around the visitor centre we were off again, just another 25 miles or so to Vegas.

The roads gradually widened from one lane to seven in town but the drive was pretty easy. The town was in a bit of a haze so not easy to see from a distance. Arrived at the MGM Grand suites and we have a lovely one on the 28th floor. Puts old faithfull lodge to shame at $150 per night.

Headed off onto the strip for a walk in the evening lights. Very nice too. Stopped off at Bellagio’s for the fountain display and did some touristy things. Picked up some dinner and back to the hotel ready for tomorrow in town!

Going to see if I can find my uncle who is a tattooist, famous apparently, and I haven’t seen for 10 or maybe 20 years. Might get the flame tattooed down the side of my face that I’ve always wanted. It is time for a mid life crisis surely.

Thanks for all the messages. Gwen – hope it gives you a laugh before school, Meg – just like Mars! Vic – Mum really is driving and yes, it is Nan B who comments a lot, she is getting to grips with email. Thanks Mum/Sue – hope that you enjoy the journey with us – we spotted Dave walking the dog in Boulder City… also t looks a lot like the Canaries in Nevada!, Sarah – Vegas & Grand canyon is worth a trip. Maria, many more postcards to come for the girls… Amanda, we miss you too x. Barb/Mum – we rest each night a bit don’t worry… some special pictures of the kerbside for you…

Safe sound and happy!

Mark & Tina


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Alabama Vacations Rentals on

Hi this is coddy oliver. I read your blog and find some interesting information that will help me in my next I want to give you a thanks

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daveandsue on

Hi, closer to civilisation now, will be a bit of a culture shock with all the madding crowds. Say Hi to my brother if you find him! All looks so exciting - you can probably make this into a book when you've finished Mark :-) Enjoy Las Vegas xxx

Stephen Hayward on

Looks like an amazing trip, I'm now following you all the way. Your travelpod has become a daily read, hope you manage to keep it up to the end.

maria on

hi guys love the photeos of grand canyon and vegas the girls hve received more postcodes they get really excited when they turn up you look like having and amazing time cant believe tina has driven in another country well done to her all is ok here turned cold here now but off to spain on friday to get some sun take care have fun XXXXXXX

Vic on

Ah Snot rocket that made me laugh I can imagine Mum being over the top grossed out lol funny.

Pics look great, glad your taking loads and you both seem to be having a good time. You are finally living your dream :) x

alison on

hi looks like you two are having great fun, loving the daily update keep it coming, we feel like we are holiday with you!!! when we did the helicopter over canyon we we so scared but worth it, the night strip helicopter was more scarey!! have fun love Alison xx

mum b on

there dont seem to be any bag ladies out there i wouldnt fit in. keep filming.

mum b on

now youv been to all the counties in vagas youv seen them all can you come homexx

Barry on

What a fantastic commentary and record of the trip. Fab photos! You could publish this as book when you get home.

Sorry I haven't left a message before, every time I try and open TravelPod at work, something called AVG blocks it. Ian suggested we needed more protection after than nasty I can't open anything from email. Anyway I take a sneeky peeky when I get home.

We stayed in the Ballagio when we went to Vegas and the helicopter over the falls was moving to say the least.

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