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South West USA & Mexico

3 weeks & 2,500 miles driving. Split between 10 bases in the USA and 2 in Mexico.

Population: 320m (UK = 60m)
Area:
10 million sq km (UK = 0.24)
Famous for:
Big & brash
Cost of a can of Coke in a restaurant: £1.50
Weather in March:
Hot 25'C in Vegas, -5'C at altitude in Bryce!
Local food: As UK .


[USA pics] [Mexico pics]


Day 1-3: Las Vegas

Direct flight to the crazy city of lights.

The small looking pyramid on the right is a hotel with 2500 rooms! The light coming out of the top is the brightest light ever made and uses 315kw).

The fountains at the Bellagio Hotel are rightly famously impressive.

And we got married!

 

 

Route 66

Famous for being the orignal route from Northeast to Southwest. Passed a sleepy outback ex-mining town called Chloride and the Hoover Dam

 

 

Chloride (ex)filling station

 

Day 4&5: Grand Canyon

It's a Canyon and it's definitely Grand!

 

It's difficult to grasp the enormity in a picture. It's about 10 miles to the other side and 1 mile deep, all calved out by a river over the last 50 years*.

*maybe longer than that, I can't remember the exact number...

 

Day 6: Meteor Crater

50,000 years ago a lump of iron the size of a house smacked the earth at 26,000 miles an hour, making a "whump" sound and a big dent in the earth. The other side is about a mile away!

 

Day 7: Antelope Canyon

Not an antelope in sight, but instead an amazing slot in the ground, that you wouldn't want to be in when it rains... [see YouTube flash flooding footage]

 

 

Day 8: Horseshoe bend

Formed by a tributary river of the Colorado which formed the Grand Canyon. So called because it was discovered by Billy Horseshoe, the explorer in 1982.

 

Day 9: Monument Valley

These crazy rock formations are huge beyond description. About 300m high. Made from random hard bits of sandstone left behind when all the rest of the plateau eroded away. Very impressive. However it's not a valley, so I asked for my money back.


 

Day 10: Arches National park
A park full of arches. The earth rises, cracks into flat 'fins' then holes can develop in the fins leaving random arches.

Turret Arch

Balancing Rock

Delicate Arch

 

Day 11: Canyonlands National Park

The place from the end of Thelma and Louise movie where they drive off the cliff.


Mesa arch

 

View from Dead Horse Point

 

Day 12: Bryce Canyon

Crazy landscape where the sandstone has been worn into random huge spikes

 

 

And it snowed overnight!

 

Day 13-15: Zion National Park

The best National Park for seeing Zions.

 

 

and the dark skies are great for stars...

 

Day 16 & 17: Las Vegas (again) and Los Angeles

To fly out to Mexico

 

 

Day 18-21: Cozumel Island (Mexico)

6 days to chill, snorkel, and get cosy with the wildlife.


(Quadcopter-cam)
 


Pelican hassling me when I'm minding my own business trying to swim...


Barracuda at Punta Sur

Vulture

 

(Vulture on Quadcopter-cam)


Iguana

Day 22-25: Puerto Aventuras

Taking life very seriously.

Tulum Mayan ruins from 500 years ago