Monday, December 24, 2018

The Southwestern Sojourn - Days 25-27: Back in Las Vegas area, Martha and Patrick fly in, and the Hoover Dam

Dec 22:  Drove from Death Valley area back to the Las Vegas area.  The Red Canyon BLM campground I planned to stay at was closed due to the government shutdown annual tradition.

So I went with plan B and went back to the Dry Lake Bed BLM camping area south of Henderson and Boulder City, NV.  I like the spot, good signal and still pretty much had my own personal portion of it all to myself.

Not much to report for today, had a good sunset though:

Dec 23:  Martha and Patrick flew in from Colorado shortly before Noon and they came out to the camping area to drop off her luggage and to pick me up for what turned out to be a small death march of the Las Vegas main drag.

We checked Patrick in at the Trump International Hotel where he'll be staying by his lonesome until the 26th.  It's his Christmas present you see, and he'll be doing solo exploring of the "Las Vegas Experience".

Then, the three of us took a Lyft ride down to the the "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign.  We got there shortly after a bus had dropped off a large number of tourists all wanting their own picture with the sign so we settled for one of it from a distance:

We meandered by the Mandalay Bay Hotel thinking to catch the light rail shuttle from there but it didn't really go very far, just to the nearby Excalibur Hotel so we didn't wait for it.  We would end up beating it to the Excalibur!

 One of Patrick's desired locations to check out was the
Luxor Pyramid and Sphinx

The death march continued down to New York, New York.  And yes, that's a hockey jersey on the Statue of Liberty.  Apparently Las Vegas currently has a winning team, the Knights; and there was a game on.

More death marching in ever thickening crowds finally ended with us back at the Trump hotel after a meal of fried chicken at some joint along the strip.  We left Patrick in his room and drove the rental car back to the BLM campsite and the RV.  

I was glad to be away from the crowds.

Had a few moments of difficulty finding the RV in the dark, but we did finally find it.  Sleep would come soon after.

Dec 24: Christmas Eve.

After a mediocre breakfast at a diner in Boulder City, we went and toured the Hoover Dam and the Mike O'Callahan - Pat Tillman Bridge.

We timed things just right and got through with the tour before the bigger crowds showed up.

 Mike O'Callahan - Pat Tillman Bridge

 Martha with a couple of the water intake towers in
the background.

 Martha standing astride 2 time zones in the middle 
of the Hoover Dam

 The Hoover Dam from the O'Callahan - Tillman Bridge

After touring the bridge and dam, we stocked up on groceries, and relaxed for a bit before heading into the Enterprise neighborhood of Las Vegas to visit with friends of mine from my days with IBM/ATT.  Good visit, with a meal at a local sports bar.  

After dinner, we headed back to the URRV after checking in with Patrick who reported over six hours of exploring the strip and aching feet.

Kind of a non-standard Christmas for the Chang Gang this year.  Miles is working at home, Patrick is soloing it on the strip and Martha and I are BLM camping.  Still everyone is happy with the situation and no holiday stress so far.


RichardM said...

It sounds like Las Vegas. I like the "death march" description of the walk along the Strip. There are some pretty decent restaurants in Las Vegas. If there is a crowd, that means it's cheap. If it's nowhere near the Strip, that's a good start. Merry Christmas!

redlegsrides said...

RichardM, I should have said death march among the living dead....pushing their oversized baby carriages....

SonjaM said...

Las Vegas. Love it or leave it. There's nothing in between. I always liked it as a fly in hub vor explorations. Sweet memories.

redlegsrides said...

Pretty sure I personally won’t be returning to Vegas anytime soon SonjaM!