|Boulder City airport|
After checking in, being weighed (!), we get to board a modified Twin Otter De-Havilland about half an hour later.
I have a window seat so the camera can see some action
|a steep turn so the people on the other side can see Hoover Dam too|
|the sun reflecting in areas of fine-feathered waves|
|first hints of a canyon|
The 4 people of my tour that booked a boat ride at the bottom of the canyon get directed to one helicopter, whereas I (no slow-boating here) get directed to a separate helicopter in which I am directed to sit next to the pilot. Oh, did I mention that I have NEVER flown in a 'copter before? When the thing slowly lifts and the pilot catapults it and me into a sharp bank the only thing escaping my lips is a ghostly "WOW!"
Not visible in these pictures: Only a VERY small area delimited by white ropes is accessible to tourists and to take the above I had to step over one of those.
|A shadowy figure kept in bounds by white rope!|
Then it's time to sit next to a helicopter pilot again for the flight back up
|I'm in the no-pay zone but the PAY Skybridge is in the top left corner|
|NOT happy after the Sky bridge|
After a couple of days it finally comes to me. I have seen this view before. As a kid on a poster on my wall! But then it was known as a painting by Belgian surrealist Rene Magritte.
|Just one step ...|
|OK, I got the eebie-jeebies and CAREFULLY sat on my bum before taking this picture right at the abyss|
|Always nice to be reminded that we're guests here|
What surprises me is the large number of Chinese tourists here. Of the ~200 people milling around at least 50% are Asians. This also explains the following: since when the Hualapai food servers are faced with Chinese tourists that can't understand the phrase "Beef or Chicken?" they quickly say words that I can't decypher, but that make the Chinese nod their heads, receive chicken or beef, and reply Xie Xie. The young Hualapai servers have learned Chinese !!!
|On n the edge again|
|The landscape puts my shadow into perspective|
The Colorado River below
|The food place is at the other end of narrow Guano Point|
|Chinese ant hill|
One last look and I board the bus that takes me back to the airport. I'm about 1/2 hour early so I use it to look at the jewelry, pottery, etc available in the Trading Post. I hate to say it, but I'll keep buying my native jewelry on eBay; much better prices for comparable items to be had in auction land.
For the flight back we are not directed towards the twin engine Otter that brought us here, but towards a single engine Cessna
|the eastern areas of Lake Mead again. Note the light water's edge regions indicating the missing water|
|at least he's not texting ;-(|
|Hoover dam is right behind that bridgge|
An hour later I'm back at my hotel and can reflect on the day. Today's excursion wasn't cheap, but is one I will remember for a long time. Again, I've seen and done things that I thought I'd never see/do and I believe I've broadened my mental horizon again, so money well spent!