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The Engineering Marvel That is the Hoover Dam:Part Two

Posted by on July 11, 2011

You know how some people are just incompetent at putting things together? That they can look at any of a number of tools and have absolutely no idea what they are or how to use them? That they might just possibly put together a high chair for their grandchild, feel totally smug, and then look at it and realize they have the footrest on the back of the high chair?

Yes. That would be me.

Now, take that description, turn it completely backwards and you have my husband, Tom. Let me just put it to you this way. When the zombie apocalypse comes? He’s the guy you totally want on your team. He could kill zombies, fix anything and construct anything – all without breaking a sweat. So, needless to say, he was all about seeing Hoover Dam.

As I mentioned in my first post about our visit, he was the one excited about this part of our trip to Vegas but when we actually got there, I was almost as excited. Almost.

Every part of our trip to Hoover Dam with Pink Jeep Tours was completely effortless. It’s possible to drive to Hoover Dam on your own, but why would you want to? This was so much easier. After our rafting trip at the bottom of the dam, we headed back up top to see the rest of this man-made monster.  Here’s a bunch more information about the dam, including some history because I’m just going to talk about our visit and not try to get bogged down with all that information.

First, we went into the Visitor’s Center part of the dam where we saw a movie that was pretty interesting about the construction of the dam. Then, we went on a tour of part of the dam. It was not very long – in fact, it was just long enough for me but I think my husband would have spent the entire day down there if he could.  He was completely fascinated by views like this.

Inside Hoover Dam.

And incomprehensibly huge machinery like this. (Notice the guys walking by on the right.)

I have no idea what these are.

Finally, I drug him out of there and we went up top to get a better view of the dam. It’s pretty astonishing how they fit that dam right into the bed of a river. Amazing, really.

Holding back the mighty Colorado River.

On one side, the Colorado keeps rushing on, unimpeded.

Downriver from the dam.

And on the other side, the Colorado River has been transformed into Lake Mead. You can see how low the water level is from the markings on the canyon walls.

Pleasure boats on Lake Mead.

We wandered down from the viewing area and out onto the dam itself. You can walk all the way across if you want; the original road across the dam still exists although most people take the Bypass now. Because the dam straddles two states – Nevada and Arizona – you can actually walk from one state to the other!

We walked all the way across and strolled back, taking pictures and discussing how incredible it was that men had been able to divert the river, build a dam, and then harness the power of the river for our use. Before we left, we took one last picture. A memorial to the workers who had done the impossible and built that dam.

Incredible.

Full disclosure: Pink Jeep Tours provided us with a hosted tour,  but as always, I will share my honest opinion about any travel experiences I have.

10 Responses to The Engineering Marvel That is the Hoover Dam:Part Two

  1. Michael Figueiredo

    I took a Pink Jeep Tour in Sedona…. it was awesome! I’ll have to try them out the next time I’m near the Hoover Dam too. Thanks for the tip!

  2. Stephanie - The Travel Chica

    Your description of Tom cracks me up. I can just imagine him getting all giddy with all the massive machinery around, jaw on the floor, wishing the tour would never end.

  3. Mark Wiens

    That opening of this article was great! Sound like you guys complement each other well.
    I’ve visited the Hoover Dam a few times and every time I’m amazed at the construction – just incredible.

  4. robin

    A genuinely awesome structure and a great post :)

  5. Brittany

    I love your humor in this blog. We are glad that you had a wonderful time.
    Best wishes.

  6. Erin

    Great pictures an humor!! Thanks

  7. Scott - Quirky Travel Guy

    Being inside the dam would be awesome. I love the idea of walking back and forth between states. I would totally do that.

  8. Kris Koeller

    Looks amazing. Terrific photos!

  9. Lisa

    I had a chance to visit Hoover Dam with friends. It was incredible. Nice photos!

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