Grand Canyon

Originally, we wanted to go see the Grand Canyon on Saturday. However, there was heavy snowfall in that area, which made it impossible to go there, so the trip got cancelled. We also had a dinner planned at MiX restaurant on Sunday evening, so I had to do some rescheduling in order to have a second try at visiting the Grand Canyon on Sunday. Luckily we managed to switch around and Sunday was dry, so we got to go there after all! We left Vegas around 7.15 AM in a big touring bus.

We almost didn’t get there… Around Ash Fork on Highway 40, we ran into a major traffic jam. Rumours were that there was a huge wreck and that there would be at least a four hour delay. We had been driving for 3 hours already… Just as the group decided to turn around and collect our money back for not having seen the Canyon, traffic started moving again. We all decided to take the chance and continue our trip. I’m glad we did!

After a nice lunch in Grand Canyon Village, the bus took us to Mather Point at the South Rim of the Canyon. It’s an amazing sight to see those vast canyon, deep valleys and beautifully colored cliffs. Awesome!

It was still a bit cold… There was snow on top of the rim and even icicles hanging from rooftops. But all in all it was a sunny day with a very clear view of the beautiful Canyon.

In the meanwhile, we were informed that on the way back, we would also face a huge traffic jam. Around the same location, Ash Fork, a big accident had occurred, involving 16 cars and 3 trucks (they’re called Diesels here). We were possibly even facing a highway shutdown, so there was a chance that this would take very very long. Fortunately, we did get on the highway but the traffic jam was still there. It took us quite some time to get past that, but we managed. We crossed the overpass at Hoover dam around 11.00PM and we got a nice view on that magnificent structure as well. Unfortunately, it was difficult to photograph from the bus.

In Vegas, we hit another traffic jam, so ultimately, we got off the bus at 0.24… It had been a very very long day, but really worth it. Grand Canyon is awesome and I’m very glad we got a chance to see it.

After a great weekend full of impressions from both Vegas and the Canyon, we started the MIX11 conference this morning with a couple of bootcamps and an Open Source Fest in the evening. Will blog about that tomorrow.

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