Thanks to my parents, who served as our tour guides during the weekend, we were able to explore a side of Las Vegas that we had never seen before. My parents recently retired there, so they are knowledgeable about the place. Yes, we were able to spend one night at the Bellagio in the city’s center (don’t you just adore the Chihuly installation on the ceiling?). However, the trip of Red Rock Canyon that we took 20 minutes outside of town, away from the city lights, was even better.

Call us naive, but we had no idea that Las Vegas offered more than just huge casinos, Snooki parties, and Elvis impersonators. Once you leave the glamour, there are reportedly a lot of sights to see, and the desert is a beautiful sight.

red rock canyon view

Three things came to mind when I thought of Red Rock Canyon: sliced honey baked ham, Sedona, Arizona, and Road Runner cartoons (high five if you too enjoy those Looney Tunes).

red rock canyon

Am I the only one who notices that the rock formations resemble foods? We took the kids on a short hike so they could get some exercise and get to know the area.

dad with kids red rock canyon
We encountered some sketchy locals before leaving the Canyon on our trip to view the impressive Hoover Dam.
These wild burros will approach you without warning.
burros across road
They prickle their ears, glare at you with their large, dark eyes, and approach your automobile quickly.
burros approaching
As part of their performance, they thrust their noses right in your face. Quite pushy, in my opinion.
nose in car
They prowl the area.
sniff around
Then they begin using their sales approach.
looking for real estate
“Um, no.”
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Then they go to Plan B, when their crime associate comes in.
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They’ve discovered the value of having two noses.
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And they continue.
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When that happens, we gently pat them on the nose before slowly driving away before pulling away hastily, leaving significant tire marks and crossing our fingers that they didn’t see our license plate.

After that incident, we traveled to the Hoover Dam, an impressive work of engineering that may cause extreme vertigo if you gaze down directly from the top.

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Avoid looking down!
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I developed a liking for this perennial shrub with fern-like stalks and stunning ombre blooms while I was in Nevada. I found out it’s called “Mexican Bird of Paradise” and I’m not allowed to grow it in my yard. Boo. Still, I adore it.

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Save a day trip the next time you’re in Las Vegas to travel through Red Rock Canyon , but beware of obnoxious locals wearing burros. They’re merely attempting to sell you something, I assure you.






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