Sunday, December 15, 2013

Day 4 - Dam It!!!

On day four we woke up and headed over to meet William in the New York casino. He had been raving yesterday about the breakfast buffet at Chin-Chin, a restaurant in his hotel. There were fresh eggs benedict, fluffy french toast with warm syrup, pastries a' plenty, and enough bacon to burst an artery. After sufficiently stuffing ourselves, we waddled our way back to the valet where we scanned the ticket for our car. "Pew pew PEW PEW!" went the valet kiosk, to the delight of William and I. Even the valet kiosks here are a blast. After our car arrived we picked up Katheryn's sister, Best, and made our way to the Hoover Dam.

Once we got out of Vegas we were treated to multicolored hills of gray, brown, and red. A slow climb over a hill revealed a sweeping view of Lake Mead, the largest man-made lake in the US. We even saw some mountain goats along the way! Before we knew it, we were there at the Hoover Dam. The Hoover Dam, originally the Boulder Dam, is a structure of cold hard concrete mixed with stunning art deco detail. Just take a look at some of the photos near the end to see for yourself. Enough yappin', here's some of my snappin' :)

It's hard to believe the Hoover Dam was built in 4 years... 2 years ahead of schedule!

Winged Figures of the Republic

Winged Figures of the Republic

Kathryn with the Dam and intake towers in the background.

"They died to make the desert bloom"

Kathryn and Best rubbing the feet of the winged statues for good luck. Apparently... it's a thing.

My best man, William, snapping away!

The new Spillway House Events Center (left) and one of the four water intake towers (right).

Best and Kathryn posing along the edge of the dam.
And now, photos from the best dam tour we've ever taken (you hear variations on this pun constantly at the dam).

One of the twenty-six penstocks of the Dam that feeds water into the generator turbines after it has entered through the intake towers.
A diagram of the Hoover Dam. Kathryn and I are such nerds we are going to print and frame a copy of this when we get back home :)

Kathryn in front of one of the massive generators. The power generators are actually the secondary purpose of the dam: the primary purpose is distributing water from the Colorado River.

A solid aluminum art-deco ceiling light circa 1935. This was inside one of the tunnels we toured inside the dam itself.

Our tour guide, Chris, talking to a fellow tour attendee. The tunnel is used for inspecting the concrete for cracks.

The vertical shaft went so far down I couldn't see the bottom... kind of freaky!

Kathryn at the grate at the end of the inspection tunnel.

Pictured above is the Hoover Dam from halfway down looking up. I had to stick my arm, camera in hand, out the grate in the previous picture to get this photo!

Go to the light...
A very long halfway that connects the inspection tunnels.

Chris the tour-guide reminded us of James Cameron, director of Titanic and my personal favorite, Avatar.

I can't help but find this humorous :)

This sign is a testament to the overall pride the workers took in constructing the Hoover Dam. We love the beautiful typography.

As we exited the tour, there were a massive pair of copper and bronze doors bearing this iconic art-deco detail. The dam is as much art as it is engineering marvel.
Hope you enjoyed our day at the Hoover Dam!
- Mike

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