Las Vegas and The Grand Canyon
March 2006


In addition to all our dive trips this year we squeezed in a quick trip to Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon.

It was one of those, "hey, this is a great deal, lets go", kind of trips Bill comes up with every now and then.  We stayed at the Excalibur as part of this el cheapo deal and I wouldn't recommend it (unless, like us, you didn't care as long as it was a quiet room on the strip).  We didn't spend much time there.  We did all the usual touristy sight seeing up and down the strip, in and out of the casinos ate lunches and dinners all over the place and generally walked until my feet would no longer move.  I read all the stuff that said "Don't wear heals...lots of walking....blah blah blah" and, yeah, I wore boots with heals.  Mistake.

We went to a couple of shows, seeing La Femme one night, the artsy, topless show at the MGM.  It was fun with several martini's and held in a small venue.  On another night we had a fantastic dinner at Okada at The Wynn and afterwards went to the show Le Reve.  The show is set in a 1 million gallon water-oriented theatre, featuring incredible diving and feats of strength with state-of-the-art special effects, where no seat is more than 40 feet from the stage. The production was created by Franco Dragone , who was the man behind many of Cirque du Soleil shows, such as O and Mystere.  We had great seats, though I don't think any of the seats could be considered bad.  Excellent show that we enjoyed very much.  We visited the lions at the MGM Grand.  Had lunch and drinks with old people, families and newly Vegas Chapel married types.  It was crowded, it was loud, it was bright.

Now I can say I've been to Vegas and frankly I don't care if I ever go back.  Too many people for me.



And now for something completely different..........

....the side trip we made to the Grand Canyon was fun.  We took a Van to a Plane to a Bus to a Helicopter to a Boat and back.  It was a full day.  They picked us up early at the hotel and we flew out to the park where we boarded a bus and rode out to the Indian Reservation.  We took the scenic helicopter ride down to the bottom of the canyon and then cruised down the river in a boat while our guides told us stories about the geology of the canyon and took our pictures at opportune scenic spots that can only be seen from the river.  The helicopter then took us back up to the reservation where we spent some time touring all the historic memorabilia they had set up and chowed on our (included) lunch while overlooking the fantastic canyon views.  A bit of hiking around to work off that lunch and we were back on the bus and heading back to Vegas.  While touring the reservation a group of young Japanese tourist were having a fun time acting as Indians, hands patting their mouths, making noises and dancing around with a lot of giggling.

The day made for a  really nice excursion that was a highlight of the trip.  Click on the Indian Headdress below for some video of the Indian at the reservation singing.

We threw in a trip to tour Hoover Dam and got some great shots from the plane.  It was a bit crowded but a nice sunny day.  I was disappointed that we couldn't wander around inside the Dam but we were allowed into the generator room to see eight of the 17 massive generators.  An interesting tour.

Then just for grins we did the indoor skydiving.  Ok I totally suck at indoor skydiving.  It was enough to convince me that I should never even try the real "jump from a plane" kind.  Bill, however, excelled and got quite a few compliments from the instructor.  After all, he should, since he has already jumped out of a perfectly good plane without killing himself.  

Here is a photo album with some photos of the trip.  Just Click it.