United States of America · 10 Days · 54 Moments · June 2017

The Upton tour through the West

11 June 2017

Mesa Verde this morning. Cliff dwellings are really amazing to see. Carrying groceries up to your house would have been quite a task. Looks like there was quite a dire here a year or two ago. Vast areas with little to no trees.

10 June 2017

Grand Canyon! Everyone is wearing down today. Weren't probably as into the canyon as we should have been. Did see some elk and the canyon was absolutely beautiful. Big. :). There had been a fire so some of the land along the road was still smoking.
Made it through our long day driving yesterday and are slowly making our way back today. First stop is the Hoover Dam.

9 June 2017

This is a picture of the interstate about an hour outside of Las Vegas. Yes. Many cars have their lights off because we are actually parked. Been sitting here with the car shut off. Apparently there was a wild fire ahead which caused a car accident. They said it will be at least an hour before we are moving again. It is 10pm. We left Las Angeles at 1:30 today. It is technically a four 1/2 hour drive and we might make it in 12. Yawn.
And still leaving. Cannot break free from this traffic. It is insane. Going between 30 mph and 0 mph for the last 3 1/2 hours.
Been "leaving" LA for three hours.
Rodeo Drive
The "Witches House" and the "house" (gate of the house) where Micheal Jackson died. Also drove my Marilyn Monroe's last house, Rod Stewarts, and many others.
Walk of fame and Chinese theatre handprints.
Some sights on Hollywood Blvd and Sunset Strip.
Lookout on Muhalland Drive. Our closest look at the Hollywood sign (in the background behind us if you look really close) and lookout over the city.
Forest Lawn Cemetary

8 June 2017

Rest of photos for today from Universal. It was a successful day! We got to enter the park an hour early this morning and didn't leave until a half hour before closing. Everyone had a great time. We've been to lots of parks. This was definitely one of our favorites.
In "Springfield" from the Simpsons. Got huge donuts and Duff beer.
Posting a few pictures while we wait in line for the waterworld show... The Jurassic water ride.
Bates motel and the courthouse from back to the future on the studio backlot tour.
First stop Harry Potter world. Brie's dream came true and she was "chosen" to have a "wand pick her" at the wand shop.
Big day at Universal.

7 June 2017

Quick drive on Sunset Strip (a small part) on our way back to the hotel. Drive by the comedy club and the laugh factory and the bad picks of the White Castle like building is the chateau marmot where many stars lived and where John Belushi died. Tomorrow is universal studios so bed early tonight! Try to take better pictures tomorrow!
Ate at the famous "pinks" hotdogs tonight!
Finally made it to our hotel in Burbank. (Residence Inn). I believe it started out being a 20 mile drive from the beach. Took us 2 1/2 hours.
How my husband drives through Brentwood. The same neighborhood where people like Harrison Ford live. :)
On the beach where Baywatch was filmed.
It's a little cold and smoggy...But it's the beach!! First time for the girls!! They love the waves! Santa Monica Pier is to our left.
Officially stopped now on the freeway. With 5 lanes.
Our first look at LA as we make our way to Santa Monica Pier and Beach. A bit smoggy today.
10 lane traffic. But so far we have kept moving.
On the outskirts of LA. Stopped for lunch and potty before the traffic got crazy. Learned two things. I don't care for jack in the box and in LA all bathrooms are locked and you have to ask for a key or get someone to unlock it for you. Interesting.
Sign said we were entering the San Bernadino National Forest. Does not look like any forrest I have seen... Very sandy with little vegetation taller than me.
Happy Wednesday morning! Off to the beaches of sunny California today!! First time in Califoenia for all of us except Marty! First ocean for the girls! Exciting! Not so excited to experience LA traffic however!

6 June 2017

Waiting for the Michael Jackson ONE Cirque de Soleil show! Great seats!!

5 June 2017

The two other exhibits we went to today. Can't take photos but both were very interesting!
Madam Tussaud's this morning! Kids loved it but no Justin Beiber. :(

4 June 2017

Walked miles and miles through casinos today. It was very warm (around 105) and we all have blisters so we were ready for a break at the end of the day. Have more pics to add later. Tomorrow is our day for everyone to pick a museum etc to go to... less walking outside in the heat.

3 June 2017

We made it!
And here we are in Nevada. I would have taken a better picture but Marty is tired of driving and we blew by at like 200 mph. The kids are excited about seeing palm trees and cacti.
And just as we enter Arizona our temp reaches 100 degrees.
1300 miles so far and HELLO ARIZONA! (For about 20 miles)
Everyone is tired and a bit hot from a day of hiking and sight-seeing. It is 3:56 on Saturday. 6 1/2 hours of napping in the car and we will be under the bright lights of Vegas. Best way for the kids to see it for the first time!!
Dead Horse Point. Colorado River is 2000 feet down. Took 10-15 million years to carve out. The bright blue water is a solar excavation pond drawing potassium chloride out of the ground to harvest and use for fertilizer. The point is said to have been used by cowboys to corral wild mustangs. They would drive them to the point and then fence them in with brush. For some unknown reason the cowboys then would choose the ones they wanted and leave the rest to die of dehydration. Some of these views were straight down. The girls would throw rocks and watch them fall fall fall.
Arches---gorgeous!! Really warm but worth it!
Miles of waiting to get into Arches Nat'l Park. But pretty scenery while we wait!
Hello Utah!
Our last views of the Rocky Mountains...
Day 2! Driving through the rest of Colorado today and into Utah. Going to visit Arches Nat'l Park and do some hiking and then on to Las Vegas which will be our home away from home for a week! Big day today! From snow-topped mountains and 45 degrees to desert and 105 degrees! We are all excited (despite how some look in the picture).

2 June 2017

Drove through the Eisenhower Tunnel today. Much longer than I realized. Lots of work went into that!!
Our condo at Borders Lodge. Very calm and peaceful here! We are the ONLY people in the whole place tonight. A little "SHINING"-ish. :)
At the Buffalo Bill gravesite and lookout.
Mile High Stadium. Wish Peyton was still here....
Stopped at Ft McPerson Nat'l Cemetary. Very peaceful. Very similar to Arlington but smaller. Reminds us of the sacrifices made so we can enjoy vacations like this... Forgot to take a photo.
First cool thing on vacation!! You name it, it does it. It washes it, dries it, massages it, and warms it. Fantastic!
Here we go!! 10 days traveling across the US! Colorado/Utah/Las Vegas/Los Angeles/Grand Canyon. Mileage on the suburban: 2050.