Thursday, January 29, 2015

December 3rd, Part Two: Fog, Fog, Sun, More Fog, and Burgers

After hiking all over the dunes, we drove back to the hotel for some tasty breakfast in the restaurant, then packed up our stuff and checked out. It was only mid-morning, but we had tons of other stuff to do!

My other regret from last year is not hiking to the bottom of the Ubehebe Crater in the north part of Death Valley. We still had some time before we had to be back in Vegas, so we started driving north. There were all sorts of creepy low clouds floating around right on the ground, and the further north we got, the worse the weather got.

Aaaand this was the crater. We pulled up, I got out of the car, almost got blown over by the howling wind, said, "HELL no!", took this picture, and got back in the car. You couldn't even see where the edge of the crater started to drop off! If I had known it was this bad I wouldn't have even suggested taking the time to drive all the way up here just to turn around. Oh well...the crater will have to stay on my to-do list for next time, along with night sky pictures.

The weather got better as we drove south, and since we had a little extra time we figured we'd check out Badwater Basin again.

Finally, some good weather! Maybe it helps that Badwater is 282 feet below sea level.

We walked around for a little while. It was actually warm, which was a nice change from everything else we had tried to do in the park so far.

We eventually got back in the car and started driving north, back toward Vegas.

Goodbye, Death Valley...I'll be back again someday!

It took a couple hours to get back to Vegas, so we made a stop for some delicious burgers along the way.

Since we liked the Bellagio so much when we were there last year, I figured we should just stay there again. And since this was my birthday trip, I figured it would be fun to splurge with a fountain view room.

The view was nuts! We could tune in a channel on the TV to hear the music from the show, so we hung out for a little while and watched the fountains before getting ready to head out for the night.

We didn't make it very far when we did leave the room; I bought myself a birthday present almost immediately. I had been eyeing this one up online and when I picked it up in the store, it was too nice to put down!

After stopping back at the room to swap out my bags, we took a cab over to the Rio. We had tickets to see Penn and Teller, but wound up getting there really early. We killed some time drinking spiked slushies and playing video poker before heading over to the theater. The show was great! When we walked in, there was live piano and upright bass music...and the bass player was Penn. Neat! We had great seats near the front,and a couple people from our row got picked to help with various parts of the show. Penn and Teller put on a fantastic show, and if you're ever in Vegas you should try to check it out!

After the show we took a cab back to the Bellagio. It was still pretty foggy. Leave it to me to come to the desert the one random time that the weather is crappy!

The fog did look pretty cool with all of the lights on the Strip, though.

We hung around outside to catch the fountain show one last time before heading inside for a late dinner at Noodles. I would have taken a picture of the delicious duck I had, but I inhaled it so fast that I completely forgot. After dinner we played video roulette for a while before eventually making our way upstairs.

They had been setting up the Christmas display when we checked in a couple days earlier, and they were finally almost done. The tree was pretty!

I grabbed a picture of the lobby, can just see the Chihuly glass ceiling on the other side of the columns. It was pretty late by this point, so we made our way up to our room and passed out. Thank goodness our flight didn't leave until the next afternoon...I couldn't wait to sleep in!

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