From the Strip to the Sky - Helicopter Tour of the Grand Canyon
You know the ZipSetGo.com saying Experience the World, Share the World….. So when I went to Vegas last week I couldn’t believe the people who never see daylight once they arrive. This post is dedicated to them! Don’t sit inside all day and night in a casino when visiting Vegas - get out and explore! When I was in Vegas last week I did something I had never done before, I took a helicopter from the strip, landed inside the Grand Canyon for lunch and then flew back. It was a gorgeous morning – sun shining, not too hot and no wind. I departed from Maverick aviation center which is a quick ten minute ride down the strip. Their equipment is amazing; they fly Eco-Star (EC-130) American Eurocopter helicopters which are built for safety and were also one of the most comfortable helicopters I have ever been in. They are roomy and have wraparound windows so no one had a bad view or missed anything on the amazing flight.
Once you board it’s a 45 minute flight to the Grand Canyon. The aerial highlights include the Hoover Dam, Lake Mead, Lake Las Vegas, Fortification Hill, Temple Rock and Iceberg Canyon. It was breathtaking! I was worried how my pictures would turn out because I had to shoot through glass but most of them were really good – I was surprised. Hoover Dam from the sky is a MUST see!! I was waiting for Transformers to come out of the Dam - but no such luck. However, when you fly over it you can see why it is featured in a lot of action films!
We kept our eyes open for wildlife along the way – we were told we could see big horn sheep, mountain lions and even wild horses. We saw some wild donkeys and cows.
After approximately 35 minutes we approached the Grand Canyon for our bird’s eye view of the natural wonder – I was speechless and AWE INSPIRED! I have been to the Canyon before but have never seen it from the sky – what a different perspective. After we flew around for 5 minutes we descended 3,500 feet into the Grand Canyon on to the Hualapai Indian Reservation. There we enjoyed a gourmet lunch and a Champaign toast - it was a great way to spend my Tuesday afternoon!!! We stood on the side of the canyon wall 300 feet above the Colorado River and threw rocks to see if we could hear them hit - WE COULDN’T!
After we ate and toasted to one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World, we climbed back on board and headed back to the Vegas Strip. We went back a different way so we could take in the Black Canyon and more of the sites!
The 4.5 hour helicopter tour is WELL WORTH the time and the money to see and experience this unique adventure! For my next trip to the Grand Canyon I want to walk out on the Skywalk at Eagle Point. It’s described as a true engineering feat, but not for the faint of heart! It’s a glass walking surface that suspends more than 4,000 feet above the Grand Canyon and extends more than 70 feet away from the edge…… AWESOME!