Page 23 of New Travel Blog Posts

North America » United States » Washington » Spokane August 11th 2008

The Grand Coulee Dam is not as spectacular looking as the Hoover Dam, but ... according to the guide, each one of the intake pipes of the Grand Coulee can take in the whole contents of all of the Hoover Dam intake. Yes, it's that's many times bigger. As for pretty engineering structures, it's pretty impressive too.... read more
Grand Coulee Dam Elevator Down
Grand Coulee Dam Riding Elevator down
Grand Coulee Dam

Strange as it may be, this was our first trip to Yellowstone. It's only a day's drive from where we grew up in southern Saskatchewan, and we'd tried to get here in several prior trips ... but, for various reasons, such as bad weather, or sudden changes of plans ... we'd never made it here before. It was a very nice surprise too. We were prepared for heavy traffic, and that was certainly the case. But, we were very pleasantly surprised with the lack of commercialism, at least as compared to Banff National Park in Canada, and the Black Hills in South Dakota. At Mammoth Hot Springs, we were expecting a Banff Hot Springs style "commercial" hot springs swimming pool with people packed sardine style. There's no swimming pool at Mammoth Hot Springs! Just hot springs ... read more
Old Faithful Geyser
Old Faithful
Yellowstone National Park

The Arches National Park in Utah has to be where the inspiration for Wile E Coyote and the Road Runner cartoons originated. The boulders precariously placed on top of thin tall columns, the impossible angles, the physics defying tricks of nature ... it has to be. It's hard to believe any of it is real until you get there and see it for yourself. W.. wasn't much into hiking, so we had a short visit. He did enjoy climbing up to some of the arches and other formations.... read more
Arches National Park
Arches National Park
Arches National Park

North America » United States » New Mexico » Farmington August 5th 2008

We stayed in Durango to visit the Mesa Verde National Park. This is a pre-Columbian site where the pueblo people farmed the land (the mesa) on top and lived in their protected settlement below their farmed land. As usual the National Parks service did an exemplary job in explaining the site to the visitors.... read more
Mesa Verde settlement
Mesa Verde settlement
Mesa Verde settlement

If we'd planned on camping, Grand Canyon would've been an ideal place. N.. had camped here 20 years before when he followed the route 66 from L.A. to Chicago in '88. Well ok, Route 66 is long gone, but there are traces of it here and there. Back then he was driving one of those deals where a moving company pays you to drive somebody else's car, and N.. was silly enough to drive this car, a 240Z with a brand new racing engine but an automatic transmission, that nobody else wanted to touch. That time he'd run out of gas just before the National Park entrance because the car had no dash board and no guages. He was lucky and managed to hitch to a service station with some helpfil locals. Thankfully, no such adventures ... read more
Stoned at Grand Canyon
Admiring the view

North America » United States » Nevada » Lake Mead August 3rd 2008

There was a major construction project going on at the Hoover Dam. A risk audit following 9/11 had shown the dam was a potential target because the main highway went right on top of it. There was a new bridge being built to bypass the dam. You can still go inside the dam on a tour, but the big generator rooms are now off-limits on this tour. The dam was one of the many projects during the "New Deal" that was designed to get the U.S. out of the Great Depression of the 1930's. It required lots of manpower and investment. Maybe the post 9/11 bypass bridge is the modern rendition of the "New Deal" in the 2008 economic crisis. A lot less manpower though. We went on the tour and continued on to the Grand ... read more
W.. and N.. looking down at the dam
Inside the dam on the tour

North America » United States » Nevada » Las Vegas August 1st 2008

Yes, Las Vegas is supposedly the entertainment capital of the world. And we did go see Cirque de Soleil. But, we're really here only for a conference. After all, August is not exactly the ideal time to be in the Vegas heat. W.. and E.. ended up spending a lot of time in the hotel's amusement zone and pool during conference times. We did explore the Vegas metro rail system that goes between hotels. Until now, we'd forgotten to take pictures on this trip. We'd left Vancouver 3 days before driving through Washingston state, Idaho, Utah and Nevada. The plan was to finish the conference and then start our vacation trip. We'd decided on the states for this trip because the U.S. was in an economic crisis and needed any help it could get. The gas ... read more
Vegas Aquarium
Looking up
Admiring the fish

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