Las Vegas and Hoover Dam

There are bigger dams with more impressive stats and higher water flow rates.  But Hoover Dam continues to fascinate and attracts million of visitors each year.  Perhaps it has to do with its proximity to Las Vegas which is only 30 minutes north of the dam.  Perhaps because of its dramatic setting in a deep gorge on the Colorado River.  Maybe it’s because the dam was built during the depths of the US recession.

Hoover Dam

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Whale Watching

Once we got 8 to 10 miles out off the coast of San Pedro (towards Catalina), the boat’s captain let us know that he had spotted 3 or 4 whales.  They were fin whales which can reach up to 90 feet in length.  Once we got closer, we could see the spray from their spouts.  They were sending the spray 8 to 10 feet up in the air.  They would blow then we could see their backs break the surface, large, black and rounded with a prominent dorsal fin.

We were on the “First String” from LA Harbor Sportfishing, Inc.  The captain told us that we were in about 1200 feet of water at that point and that the fin whales could stay under water for long periods.  So there were long intervals between sighting them but there appeared to be several in that area.  It was difficult to get good photos since they breached the water very briefly and we didn’t know where they were going to appear. Continue reading

Palm Springs, CA

Palm Springs is a favorite destination for the “snow birds” when they want to flee the cold and snow.  I’m not sure if the volume of visitors is lower this year since the US has not experienced much harsh winter weather so far this winter.  But the town seemed pretty busy when we visited for a few days at the end of January.  We got into the spirit of things by checking out the happy hour snacks at the Village Pub.

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