Day 3 | Red Rock Canyon | Keith Urban

Starting out from Pete and Jacqui's this morning saw us showered and out to one of the local natural attractions at Red Rock Canyon. The drive up to the canyon ring-road was pretty short. You could almost see the range from their Hotel.  

The views were growing in drama as we approached through the suburbs.  The route was ever changing. The feature, the red rocks, were contrasted by an older grey mountain range lifting from the big flat area that Las Vegas sits on. And by mountains, I mean they are sheer vertical and seem to rise hundreds of metres, attracting rock climbers to the faces and hikers up the paths.

When we arrived up at the visitor centre a big group of ladies in black Lycra noisily complained about the hike they were taking together. They were hilariously whining about the walk from the car park but I think they were, like us, a little humbled by these amazing views. The Centre also had a great natural history part explaining the unique fauna (they have tortoises up here!) and flora (the Joshua trees were amazing).

While we were at one of the photo sites we met Rebecca and Nicko from London cruising on an awesome hired Indian motorcycle. They let everyone get on their bike and have photos with the amazing backdrop which was fun.

Then there was Bonnie Springs. Well there once was a western town reproduction in the 1950s. They seem to have just carried on doing that. An audacious audience participation production was a little sad despite the enthusiasm of delivery. It was redeemed by the petting zoo that was full of pretty happy-looking, good condition animals. The goat, burro and some kind of deer were supported by chickens and were all free to roam. All of them could wander off. Others, possibly fenced off from the people included the wolves-which were way too large for comfort - and some cutey-pie chip mink things.

The Black Bear diner is a chain that we've always enjoyed and that's where we had lunch. The portions were way too huge but yum. It was difficult to leave such yummy food.

A visit to the iconic Las Vegas sign. It was buzzing with activity as the sun was setting. There was a pretty organised queue for the main angle but otherwise you could just wander and take your shots. We scored some excellent priced last minute tickets to Keith Urban playing at the T-Mobile Arena so retired to our respective hotels to freshen up before heading out.

Using the Tram we were able to get close but it was still a bit of a hike. Everything in Vegas is a bit of a hike.  The arena was massive and everyone enjoyed the concert. Keith was very personable and made sure there was old and new songs and keeping everyone engaged. He went down into the audience and amiably chatted even though they were super enthusiastic. It was a large well behaved crowd of all ages.

After the show it was almost midnight so we made our way back.

Daily highlights

Angus | Red Rock Canyon – have to hike here another time.
Rosie | Keith Urban singing happy birthday for her (must have been, he wasn’t clear)