One Day Vegas
I'm headed out to Vegas for the weekend of January 9th-11th. It is a free trip through my boyfriends work and we've been to Vegas several times before. We were thinking about renting a car for one day and just doing some driving around. Any thoughts on what a good route to take would be or a good destination?
I think Hoover Dam is very cool but don't know if they have the tours going on anymore. I know they quit them after 9-11 and don't know if they've started back up yet. There's a lot of fun options on Lake Mead like a dinner trip on a paddle-wheel and various white-water trips close by as well. Hope this gives you some ideas.
There is a park just to the west of Las Vegas that is pretty cool -- I cannot remember the name offhand (maybe Red Rock Canyon?), but there is hiking and other desert activities there.
Also, you can drive south (especially if you DO choose to see Hoover Dam) along US93 and there is a turn-off in Arizona where you can drive to the edge of the Colorado River IN the Grand Canyon (I believe this is on the Hualapai Reservation). If you are interested in these, I can get more information on them (I don't have access to it where I am at presently).
Also, I THINK you can easily do a day trip to Zion National Park from Las Vegas. If you've never been there, I think that would be my number one choice. Moderator Mark will probably know better than I about whether Zion can be done in a day trip from Las Vegas. I haven't seen him post today yet, but he won't be long, I'm sure!
Check the Hoover Dam website for information on the available tours (I think the deep dam tour is no longer available, but they have something called the "Discovery Tour.") The site says the present alert level has resulted in additional security measures, but that they ARE open. Bob
LV is one area I do know...
One of the coolest things about Las Vegas is... Within five driving hours of the famous LV strip, you can easily be in five different national parks. If you have never seen Death Valley -- it is an awesome place. If you go to our <a href = "http://www.roadtripamerica.com/links/nparks.htm">national parks</a> page -- you can find some useful tips for planning roadtrips.
Zion, is gorgeous in any season. I have driven to Zion from LV a number of times for the day. Along the way, be sure to stop at the Reservation store at the turn-off to <a href = "http://parks.nv.gov/vf.htm">Valley of Fire</a> -- the most amazing collection of fire works you are ever likely to see. And you can test some of the rockets or motars out back.
Speaking of Valley of Fire regional park -- in January you are very likely to see one of two of the juvenile bands of mountain sheep that wander around the park. Valley of Fire has some of the most fantastic sandstone coloration anywhere in the country. Backdrops from this park can be found in just about every type of new car ads and plenty of rock-n-roll CDs.
<a href = "http://www.roadtripamerica.com/places/grapevin.htm">Petroglphys</a> and other native Indian artifacts are easily found around Las Vegas. Grapevine Canyon near Laughlin is only about an hour south of Las Vegas. There is an incredible gold mine exploration tour near <a href ="http://www.desertusa.com/oatman/du_oatman.html">Oatman</a>, CA on the historic Route 66.
Hard Hat tours are no longer possible at the Dam, but the tours from the Nevada side are still available. Plus the structure is awesome.