Road Trip through Mars

March 27, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Previously from the Valley of Fire: Road Trip through Mars

Colors and Textures around Lake Mead, Nevada Desert near Las VegasColors and Textures around Lake MeadNevada Desert near Las Vegas My spring road trip itch is growing out of control. What we started in 2013 on our first family road trip grew into a passion. And yes, things are in the works for 2017 but we're not there yet. So when I had a recent opportunity to get a taste of a road trip adventure on a short one-day trip into a desert, I could not pass on that. Deserts have so much character and they are so different from the environment I have been used to all my life. Yes, they're dry, desolate, possibly hostile. But when you take a moment to pause, to look, to breathe in the hot air, to notice their grandeur, to notice the details, they're so beautiful at the same time. 

The best idea after arriving in Las Vegas, Nevada? Leaving it as soon as possible. I'll admit, I did lose a little bit of time before doing just that. First, I drove in to a small local diner offering Mexican cuisine. Yes, it was only 10 a.m. Pacific Time, but in Buffalo, NY the clock was already showing 1 p.m. And I did not even have a breakfast yet! Mexican food is another tradition on our road trips, due to the southern destinations of the first two. After getting more than filled with a burrito and an enchilada platter back in the car it was, destination set in Waze, and off. I was happily leaving the city in my rearview mirror.

Once I paid my dues and entered the Lake Mead National Recreational Area it was real, and I was slowly getting into a road trip mood. It was not the true full experience though I must admit. My crew was missing and I could not shed that feeling for the rest of the day. I simply had to accept this was merely a prep for the true next road tripping adventure.

Happy on the Road, Nevada Desert near Las VegasHappy on the RoadNevada Desert near Las Vegas It was not my first time driving the road but it was still as much fun, possibly even more as last time it was merely a way to get to a destination in Southern Utah. This time, it was part of the destination, or destination #1 of 2. With the road moving up and down the hillsides of Lake Mead and left and right to wind among the peaks the road trip feeling was settling in. As I met the first few motorcycles I was a bit jealous that they had the better experience on this wonderful road. Maybe one day.

I stopped at pretty much every pull out area and actually wished for more. The road seemed to look its best when there was nowhere to stop. Yes, I said the road. While the surrounding desert certainly offered wonderful views I actually like the sight of a paved road making its way through beautiful landscapes. In places like this it can create road trip themed billboards.

When I was not trying to integrate the road into the landscape I was on a lookout for one of two things here. Some areas were very rich in textures, others in colors. It was amazing to observe how everything changed from pull out to pull out. And one more thing made the experience more intense. I left Buffalo, NY that morning with temperatures around the freezing point and here, still before noon, it was in the high 80s. Eventually, the thermometer hit 92°F.

Intense Desert Colors, Nevada Desert near Las VegasIntense Desert ColorsNevada Desert near Las Vegas

Lake Mead National Recreational Area near Las Vegas, NV

What was my destination #2? That's for another post.

Enjoy the beauty that surrounds you (#etbtsy)!

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