Saturday, June 28, 2014

Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Vegas, Zion Road Trip

So Dave and me decided to road trip to Vegas and make a couple of stops on the way there and back. Vegas is about a 12 hour drive from us if we were to go straight there.

We left Friday night around 8 pm and had decided we were just going to take turns driving and sleeping through the night and go straight to our first stop, The Grand Canyon!

Boy was that a fun drive...not. Once we got into Utah and began to head south there was like nothing for forever. We saw a lot of deer, mice, and a few jack rabbits... and I hit one. Sad day. We got to the Grand Canyon a little after 6 in the morning local time.

Its SO big. You hear people say pictures don't do it justice and man is that true. It's so deep and huge and just amazing. It was nice that we got there so early because we were able to enjoy many of the first few overlooks just us two. It was super windy and that made it kinda chilly but as the day went on it warmed up and was absolutely perfect. Blue sky and probably around 75. It was a little bit hazy because there was a fire but it wasn't too bad. Just made some of the pictures less pretty than they could've been.

We found the visitors center and hopped on a free shuttle bus that takes you further into the canyon to other overlooks that you can't just drive to on your own. We took a ton of pics and still couldn't believe how big it was. On the drive back to the visitors center Dave and me both fell asleep. People probably thought we were weird but they were probably people that didn't drive from Colorado the night before ;)

The pictures of the Grand Canyon we got in the early morning were the best

Later in the day at one of the shuttle stops

We left the Grand Canyon once we finally found a way out. Like seriously there was a sign that sent us in a circle and it was super annoying how hard it was to find our way out. But we finally did and headed to Kingman, Arizona about 3 hours away to stay in a hotel for the night. We checked in and then headed to the In N Out that was nearby. I had somehow forgotten how delicious it was. God it is SO freaking good. We went back to the hotel and got in bed by 8. It was amazing to sleep in a bed.

We woke up at 6am and Dave asked me what time it was and I told him 6 and he said "That's it?" and we both slept for about another hour. We got breakfast at our hotel and then headed to the Hoover Dam about 1 hour 20 minutes away.

We got to the Hoover Dam and I had no idea it was literally on the Nevada/Arizona border. We walked out on the bridge to look at the Dam and it was soooooo windy. But it was also really hot so I guess it was kinda nice that it was so windy. After the bridge we parked and then walked across the Dam.

This is the view of the Hoover Dam from standing on the bridge

This is the view of the bridge from standing on the Dam

After we finished there we headed to Vegas where we were staying at The Flamingo on the strip and staying for 3 nights. So much about our hotel was stupid and we will never be staying at The Flamingo again. Anyways, the first night we walked around the strip after resting in our room for a little while. That's one thing I love about Vegas is that you can wait until late to go out and not worry about missing anything and everything closing. The strip is so pretty with all the hotels and lights. So after we walked around a while we came back to our room and went to bed.

Next day we slept in then went to the pool, then rested and walked the strip some more. There was an awesome Michael Jackson street performer and he was friends with an Elvis impersonator. We watched them for a while and it was really entertaining especially after this drunk homeless man came up and started hovering around their money bucket. Michael Jackson was pissed! It was so funny.

You can tell Michael had enough. He's got his hands on his hips haha

Pretty much did the same thing the next day except we played some penny slots just to get drinks and that was fun to see inside some of the nicer hotels we hadn't been in yet.

Our last night in Vegas we went to In n Out for dinner again because WHY NOT?! It was even better than it was when we had it in Arizona. Plus its really cheap. Delicious and cheap what more could you want? We went to bed pretty early because we were waking up and leaving super early the next day.

Our In N Out mmmmm animal style everything for me :)

The next day after a hassle of a checkout we were on the road and headed toward Zion National Park in Utah which was about a 3 hour drive away. When we got there we hopped on the shuttle bus that was going to take us to the trail head of our hike, The Narrows. There were so many people hiking the trail. It's really only a trail for about the first half mile and then you literally are hiking in a river through the canyon. It was amazing! We could not have asked for a better day. Blue skies, perfect water temp and air temp. It was the coolest hike ever. So different from any hiking we'd done before. The trail is just an out and back trail so we knew we needed to turn around because we still had 10.5 hours left of driving before we got home that night and because The Flamingo prolonged our checkout process we really needed to get back on the road. But we just couldn't turn around. It was just so much fun hiking through the water and it was just the coolest hike ever. Finally we came to a fork in the river and decided we better turn around and head back to the bus. So sad. We just wanted to stay longer and do the whole thing. We will definitely be back though.

This picture I took from the bus. See what a gorgeous day it was!

Hiking The Narrows

This is probably my favorite picture from that day

Random stranger took this for us

Dave standing in one of the deeper parts of the hike

We got back to our car and headed home. With still more than 10 hours to go we were going to get home at 2:30 AM. Southern Utah is actually a really pretty drive. There's nothingness and then theres these canyons that just keep going and going and its just crazy.

This is Devil's Canyon overlook which was one of many overlooks off the highway

The one thing that made us want to go home was that we would get to see our kitties. Dave's mom was watching them at her house for us so we went at 2:30 to get them from her house. They were so happy to see us and definitely happy to be back home with us.

State count so far this summer
     1. Colorado
     2. Utah
     3. Arizona
     4. Nevada
many more to come...

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