Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Grand Canyon and Dam pictures

On Monday we went on the Dam tour (Hoover Dam). The Dam is definitely a remarkable architechural marvel. It dams water from the Colorado River and on the opposite side lies beautiful, huge, man-made Lake Mead.
We only had an hour here, so we were unable to see the inner workings of Hoover Dam. We chose to walk around the top of the dam and look out from the observation deck instead. Notice the cars driving on top of the dam. In about 2 years, the new road across the canyon over the Colorado River should be finished. Then no vehicles will be allowed across the Dam. The building of the road began after 9/11.

Lake Mead is surrounded by mountains and canyons that are amazing. After the Dam tour, we went on a lunch cruise on a paddleboat around Lake Mead. Notice the white ring at the bottom of the mountains, this is where the water level has dropped about 100 ft. over the past few years. Lake Mead is about 500 ft deep and 550 miles. It provides drinking water for surrounding states, as well as providing a place for recreation. Serving as a place to get away from the heat of the desert. This area only averages 2-3 inches of rain a year.

On Tuesday, we went to the Grand Canyon (the West Side). It was about a 3 hour ride on a bus. Notice the Joshua trees that were along the road on the way in some areas. Joshua trees are a very ancient breed, some being as old as 900 years old. Some are really scraggly and half dead looking, others are kind of cool looking. When you see the trees in large groups like in this photo, there is said to be water in this area of the desert.
This side of the canyon is owned by Hualapai tribe of Native Americans because it lies on their Indian Reservation in northwestern Arizona. This is also the area where the new Skywalk is located. I ventured out on the Skywalk which is a glass bridge 4,000 ft above the Colorado River overlooking the canyon. I was nervous that I wouldn't be able to go out on it because I have a little bit of a fear of heights. But it was pretty cool, the bridge overlooked Eagle Point. You can no l onger take cameras or cell phones out on the overlook because stupid people were dropping them on the glass and damaging it or dropping things off the bridge. So the only way to get your picture made out there is to buy the picture they take. Too commercial for me, so I didn't buy a pic. We took our own pictures off the Skywalk.

This is Eagle Point, notice the lower point in the canyon that resembles an eagle with spread wings.
At this point was also a little replica of an Indian village and Ben got a few pictures of a Hualapai dancing.

The most breathtaking sites were from Guano Point. It was unbelivable and the camera doesn't do justice to the color of the canyons. At some points you could also see the Colorado River snaking down below.

Guano Point, notice the river way down in the canyon.

In this photo, I just took off and flew around the canyon. It was great!

This was a cool looking cactus outside a ranch where we ate lunch.


Anonymous said...

Hope you enjoyed your Dam tour! Looks like cool! So you've been out to Grand Canyon twice now! I read an article about the Sky Bridge. How you couldn't bring your camera and you had to wear booties. Did you wear booties?!


The Hadfields said...

We went years ago and you're right, pictures don't do it justice! Such an amazing place...