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Day 13, Thursday, June 1, 2017:
Las Vegas Nevada -> Hoover Dam -> Las Vegas Nevada

I keep falling behind on the blog with more cameras to download and back-up and things to do. Staying up to midnight and beyond to capture the day just isn't in me so I'm making it a point to log decent notes to go with pictures.

Sleeping at the Flamingo was a refreshing treat. The central air conditioning didn't leave me croaking with dry mouth halfway through the night. Motel air conditioned dehydrated air can be brutal. We got ready to hit the street and find breakfast and ended up at the Hash House A Go Go. I made a fairly plain Jane choice, it was good but I could have gone for more adventure.

Timing fell such that we had to do laundry, Pete & Lorna doing up Vegas big time! We found a place a few blocks away on the way out to Hoover dam. I worked on the blog while Lorna ran the machines. We got out and grabbed a quick Panda Express lunch.

Then it was off to Hoover Dam. We made it through security, parked in the garage then made our way down to the dam. A roadway runs across the top of the bridge and the sidewalks have interpretive displays and viewing points. Originally this was the primary highway. Today the Mike O'Callaghan-Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge carries traffic above the river on the downstream side and the sidewalk provides a viewing location for sightseers. We went far enough to get a good look at the spillways. The spillways were high and dry. The water level in Lake Mead was far below historic markings on the banks. When I looked up the current level I found it was about 140 feet below full, as low as it looked I didn't think the difference was that much. The condition of the 80 year old concrete is stunning. This dam is big, deceptively big. Looking down downstream and into the dry spillway tubes that run down stream I got a sense of scale. Also, looking to the generation station at the base, the pick-up trucks parked looked like toys. Slowly my sense of scale awe got adjusted upward.

Then it was back to Las Vegas. We had tickets for the Big Bus Night Tour and needed to eat first. We had begun to get our bearings and spotted Guy Fieri's Vegas Kitchen & Bar. Being fans of DDD we figured it would be fun. I had the MOTLEY QUE SANDWICH: pulled pork shoulder smothered in Guy's bourbon brown sugar BBQ sauce, stacked with citrus slaw, pickle chips, aged cheddar cheese, onion straws + donkey sauce on a toasted pretzel hoagie. It came with a bucket of 3 different forms of French fries and it was one of the most amazing things I have ever eaten.

Soon it was time to find the bus stop for the Big Bus Night Tour to Old Vegas and we did. The tour in the open air top of a double decker bus was a great time. The guide was very informative and entertaining. He was able to pace his presentation to the unpredictable progress the bus made through traffic. We got a much better perspective of the place and it all added to the experience. We got up to Old Vegas at about 8:30 to explore Freemont Street. This is a 2 block section of the original Vegas strip that has been revitalized in an amazing way. An arched roof / "TV screen" Spans the street for the 2 block length. Zip lines run over the street, bands and DJ's play from 3 stages, male and female burlesque like characters can be spotted. Lorna got to pose with a trio of Elvis impersonators. Meanwhile the old school casinos and other businesses are operating with their store fronts on the street. We wandered into a few casinos and they were nice places, not as grand and ostentatious as the newer paces but they has a nice old school class. Then at 9:00 the lights were dimmed and the overhead 2 block long screen exploded into a video light show with synchronized music. After 10 minutes it was back to normal and off to the bus for the return leg of the tour. We got back around 10:00 and wandered up a pedestrian street near the Linq Casino. We stopped for an ice cream before heading in to wrap up the day. It was really cool to get a good view of this iconic town and the Freemont Street Experience was surreal.

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Created June 11, 2017