Waking up early in the morning after 3 days staying in LV (Las Vegas, of course, not that LV which stands for Latvia). Exhausted but determined. Yes, that’s us.
Shortly after Las Vegas we made turn to the Hoover Dam. We crossed it by cars and walked back by foot. Try splitting some drops of water in it and you will see how upcoming winds fight against gravity. One can imagine how all this massive construction was build helping to control water in a desert and giving electricity at the same time. This side of the dam was made in astronomical motives symbolizing the greatness of this man made giant construction influencing several U.S. states. After sightseeing, shopping and geo-cashing we crossed the dam again. And we crossed it again by cars going back. Then we stopped at parking lot before the bridge. We went uphill and took a walk on a bridge. There was a nice sightseeing from a middle of a bridge over the dam. Really nice view just a bit windy on beginning –watch and catch your hats. Then we passed the bridge by cars continuing our journey.
So, we continued our trip following the Route 66 from Nevada to Arizona. Well, it’s better to say we were trying to follow the path of historic route wherever possible but our advanced navigation apps several times recalculated directions to the quickest possible way which, of course, tended to push our way away from the way 66. Good thing was that we noticed it several times and could navigate our cars manually by looking on a map (an electronic map, to be precise, it is really nothing to do with these old-fashioned paper poster maps that span well over several hundred sq. feet if unfolded). As one might guess bad thing was that a few times we did not notice it being surprised how quickly we can drive on a highway. In result, our know-how that we obtained was the following — if one strictly follows the planed navigation path it’s fine but if one decides to make a turn away then one must correct everything manually. So, we ended up using the navigator map showing our desired path but not using the automatic navigation (i.e. without all those fancy voice commands “keep left”, “go straight”, “go right”, “take exit”, “turn around”, “turn around now!” all those kinds of sounds that otherwise in a miracle way come from somewhere on a right time when you need it and tell you were to drive).
So, we were on the Rout 66 that was going up and down and right and left presenting the best possible landscapes for every rider. It was interesting to see how all villages, inns, shops, coffee shops, every place was proud to stand by the Rte 66 and to be a part of the great history trying hard to preserve it. Old cars, old signs, proudness and happy people that was how we saw the Route 66. It certainly is not easy for the owners at least not for all but that’s a way it was. What a way! Our advice, if you have a time — go Route 66, if you are in a rush then it’s your own problem – you are free to choose new quicker highways (sorry, I do not remember their numbers but one can find them on any map).
Our main destination for this day was the Arizona Meteorite crater. Our team was the last on its way but since we skipped a little part of the Route 66 we somehow got in a lead. Suddenly it started to rain. Several lightning bolts stroked the sky. Does it supposed to rain in desert? We were rushing to the Crater to reach it at the day time. When we arrived at the crater it was not raining. We got a group ticket and went inside. At the beginning, we rushed in passing the exhibition to see the crater itself. The Arizona Crater, the Canyon Diablo crater, the Barringer crater, the Meteor crater (note that this last term is technically incorrect, it should have been called ‘meteorite crater’ instead) — these are all the names for this crater. Being more than km in diameter and 170 m in depth it has been formed almost 50 thousand years ago in a matter of seconds by a small asteroid impactor around 50 m in diameter.
Then we went inside to see exhibition. We watched the educational movie, took picture of the biggest Canyon Diablo meteorite piece (called Holsinger meteorite) weighting well over 600 kg. For most of us it was the first time to see meteorite crater so big by our own eyes.
After visit of the great meteorite crater we went a bit back to Flagstaff where our reserved motel was located. Tired and ready for the next day adventures. Yes, that’s us.
Laura adding to the story:
When I checked the internet tonight I noticed that there had been a storm in Latvia. This evening we caught a storm as well, that resembled a huge lid over the sky, where you could see a light in the distance with black strip over it, which told us of rain. After visiting all the sightseeing objects for the day our team went looking for an geocache. Near one of the caches we met two photographers, who where looking for “natural light sources” that is lightning, rainbows and other such natural phenomenon to capture them on photograph. It is mainly an hobby, but some of the pictures are being sold as well. One of the two is n professional photographer. 2 men with 3 cameras, each turned to a different direction. Sensors that react to light where attached to the cameras, as soon as light hits the sensor, for example, lightning, the camera takes a picture. It was explained to us that the sensors are quicker than lightning, so the pictures are taken. We where shown the freshly taken pictures of lightning, as well as their best pictures, that where posted on Facebook. It is interesting that whilst standing in the middle of an abandoned gas station the fields stretch very far and there is lightning in the distance, that flashes with some regularity in every direction, so you can only turn your head around. If in the morning around 7 o’clock in Las Vegas the temperature was already 37°C, and it rose to 44°C in the middle of the day than at the moment the displayed temperature was only 13°C. It is a huge difference that shocks the body. We where ready for this kind of cold only upon returning to Latvia.