For the week before NYE we decided to take a short trip to Las Vegas, which is about 5.5 hours away from San Diego. We are not the party animals we used to never be, or even like gambling. This trip objective was to explore what Las Vegas has to offer besides the typical activities you are aware of.
We started our drive around 6:00 am with a planned stop at McDonald’s in Barstow train station.
They have a nice fast food court where the seating areas are inside old train cars.
The next stop was the Ghost Town of Calico!
Calico is an old West mining town that has been around since 1881 during the largest silver strike in California. With its 500 mines, Calico produced over $20 million in silver ore over a 12-year span.
When silver lost its value in the mid-1890’s, Calico lost its population. The miner’s packed up, loaded their mules and moved away abandoning the town that once gave them a good living. It became a “ghost town.”
We took a very quick (around 10 minutes) train ride around the main mining sights. The speakers were not the best, so it was really hard to understand the explanations.
Walter Knott purchased Calico in the 1950’s architecturally restoring all but the five original buildings to look as they did in the 1880’s. Calico received State Historical Landmark 782 and in 2005 was proclaimed by then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to be California’s Silver Rush Ghost Town.
We continued our drive passing next to the town of Zzyzx, formerly Soda Springs, is the former site of the Zzyzx Mineral Springs and Health Spa and now the site of the Desert Studies Center. Curtis Howe Springer gave the made-up name Zzyzx to the area in 1944, claiming it to be the last word in the English language.
Arriving at the town of Baker, one of the worlds most amazing tourist attractions caught our eyes. No less than the world’s tallest thermometer!!
Willis Herron, a businessman, dreamed of a huge thermometer for 25 years before he made it real in California’s high desert. The World’s Tallest Thermometer is a 134-foot-tall symbol of the record high temperature in the U.S., in nearby Death Valley — 134 degrees Fahrenheit in 1913.
After spending about 15 seconds at this sight, we had enough and we continued our adventure across the street to the famous Alien Jerky store.
They have a lot of aliens and jerky. We bought the pepper and teriyaki flavor and it was really good.
We finally arrived in Vegas and checked-in to our hotel, the Linq. We got a beer to go and started walking to dinner! Eitan was starving!
We chose the Gordon Ramsey Burger restaruant, which had a line of 1.5 hours. No reservations were taken, stupid us still stood in line.
Eitan was about to pass out. The food was absolutely amazing. 10 out of 10.!
We walked around the shops inside the Planet Hollywood. There was a president store which all kinds of Trump memorabilia. Luckily nobody was buying anything.
We heard about the old Vegas in downtown, so we took an Uber to check it out. We first stopped at the Banger brewery to have a flight of beers!
They have a restaurant called “Heat Attack” where they give you a hospital gown, the menu items are called like medical terms. Also, if you weight 350lbs or more you eat for free!! unfortunately, neither Sarah or Eitan wight 350lbs, so we needed to pay for our dinner (in another restaurant).
There are street performers and people to take photos with. They do charge you $20 for a photo, so be careful when you go!
The central attraction is a barrel vault canopy, 90 ft (27 m) high at the peak and four blocks, or approximately 1,500 ft (460 m), in length.
While Las Vegas is known for never turning the outside casino lights off, each show begins by turning off the lights on all of the buildings, including the casinos, under the canopy. Before each show, one bidirectional street that crosses the Experience is blocked off for safety reasons.
Every couple of minutes you see people zip lining across the street. We wanted to try it so we bought the cheapest tickets, which was a mistake as Eitan didn’t realize the cheap tickets you only travel half the distance and you don’t get to be in the superman position. Regardless of the mild fuck-up, we still went ahead and made the line on our scheduled time.
They strap you on and they let you go!! pretty fun and way better than what we expected. We will be doing the full ride next time we go to Vegas!
Because you are flying above people, 7 stories up and 2 blocks long, they take liability pretty seriously so they don’t let anyone carry anything that might fall. So no selfies!
They have like 5 different stages of live music. All the performers were extremely talented and we stayed a little bit to hear the 80’s band. People in the Fremont Experience are more chill than in the stip. We really recommend this place for the next time you go to Vegas,
We were tired from the long day so we took an Uber back to the hotel!
Bonus Pic of The Day: Apparently you cannot bring your service dog with you while Ziplining!
One Comment Add yours
A great read! Looking forward to more of your adventures. Cousin Steve