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Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:16 pm

You packed a lot into three days and gave me memories of my visit to the Grand Canyon and various visits to Vegas. One of my favorite family trips growing up was when we spent a couple of weeks in the summer of 1996 going through Southern Utah, Northern Arizona, and ending off with a couple of nights in Vegas before going home. We camped at two different KOAs in Utah and at this weird, run down Flintstones campground just south of the Grand Canyon South Rim entrance in AZ, so staying a Best Western off the Strip at the end of the trip felt like a luxury. I really loved all the red rocks of the Grand Canyon (both rims), Bryce Canyon, Zion, and Arches, but my favorite part of my trip was going to Slide Rock State Park between Flagstaff and Sedona and destroying a swim suit on nature's waterslides (if you every go back to AZ in the summer or when its warmer I highly recommend this place). I'd love to go back that region someday and will have to check out Glen Canyon (wasn't familiar with it before). I'll also have to actually check out Hoover Dam for real and do the tour as my only experience with the Hoover Dam was crossing over it in the family minivan on our way to Vegas when it was 117F according to our thermometer and getting out for a minute to get a quick picture/look of it. When we went to Vegas I was able to convince my dad to go up the Stratosphere at night but couldn't convince him to pay for a ride on the High Roller or other rides there (the cost for going up for 5 people was enough for him) and I didn't go up it again until 2009 when the rides were different.

The only time I rode The Rollercoaster at NYNY (as it was called then) was in 2009, but I really enjoyed my front row night ride with a friend. Maybe it was because I was in a rollercoaster drought at the time or maybe because I was pretty drunk or maybe it was the thrill of watching my friend film the ride on his Flip camera and hoping he didn't drop it (note I was not a TPR member at the time and would advise against friends or anyone doing this today), but for whatever reason I enjoyed my one ride on the NYNY Togo. For anyone that's never ridden the NYNY Togo, if you do ride it wait for the front row and ride it at night as the views and Vegas skyline all lit up are awesome and you won't notice the ugly rooftops or backstage areas - also try to find a coupon or discount online or in one of those Vegas magazines (I printed a $4 off coupon I found online and only paid $10 in 2009 :lol: ). Doing both NYNY and the Stratosphere on that 2009 trip, I decided to hold off on Speed at the Sahara and save it for the next Vegas trip not thinking it was going to be taken down soon. My next trip to Vegas wasn't until February of last year, so I finally got to experience Adventuredome them. Circus Circus has shown its age but it could be worse, at least its not in Primm. The Adventuredome part is really nice though - I really liked the rock theming inside and the 90s Bio-Dome vibe I got from it. Both Canyon Blaster and El Loco were really fun and I got 3 rides on each one plus I rode a flat (I don't think Chaos was running when I was there) that flipped upside down like a fly swatter and the drop ride which is small but really packs a punch (worth trying out if you have a wristband) - and did these all in two hours. I agree with you that I like Canyon Blaster slightly better than El Loco. I love that intial drop/pull into the first loop and how smooth it is for an Arrow. Arrows age well when they aren't exposed to the elements and it brings me back to how smooth Viper must have been the first time I rode it in 1992. Speaking of the new High Roller, I thought of doing it last year but dediced to save it for a future visit. I'll have to try to do it at sunset time next visit to Vegas and hopefully in the open bar car.

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:57 pm

As always, lovely update. I gotta get out to Vegas.

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Thu Apr 12, 2018 5:04 am

Good stuff as always Bill. Always look forward to your installments

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:25 am

Awesome update! Seems like you two had a blast. One day, I'll get out there to Vegas.. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Fri Apr 13, 2018 7:37 am

Thanks guys!!!

anonymouscactus wrote:If you want to gamble, why spend money on a flight and all that jazz. That being said, there are other great things about Vegas, one of my favorite meals I've ever had was in Vegas, and the theming is interesting... well, maybe once or twice. I don't know, I guess I don't really get it anymore. Then again I've been "sober" for a few years now. (and can now go on coaster trips all the time!)


Yeah I'll be honest... I don't think I'd ever view Vegas as a destination on it's own. It's fun and I see the appeal but it seems like such a waste to go out to such a cool part of the country and spend a majority of your time in a tourist trap city (even though I love tourist traps). I'm sure we'll be back but probably because Frontier flies there for peanuts and we can use it to visit the canyons or southern California since it's only a few hours away and when we do that we'll end up spending some time in Vegas on the day we fly out. I had a great time in Vegas but I still feel like I should be a bigger Vegas fan than I really am. There are just so many other, better things to do nearby.

805Andrew wrote:You packed a lot into three days and gave me memories of my visit to the Grand Canyon and various visits to Vegas. One of my favorite family trips growing up was when we spent a couple of weeks in the summer of 1996 going through Southern Utah, Northern Arizona, and ending off with a couple of nights in Vegas before going home. We camped at two different KOAs in Utah and at this weird, run down Flintstones campground just south of the Grand Canyon South Rim entrance in AZ, so staying a Best Western off the Strip at the end of the trip felt like a luxury. I really loved all the red rocks of the Grand Canyon (both rims), Bryce Canyon, Zion, and Arches, but my favorite part of my trip was going to Slide Rock State Park between Flagstaff and Sedona and destroying a swim suit on nature's waterslides (if you every go back to AZ in the summer or when its warmer I highly recommend this place).


I'd love to check that out. This trip was heavily based on a family trip we took as kids too (with a lot of new things thrown in). I haven't been to Zion or Arches yet but I'd love to go. I've been to Bryce Canyon and it's insane. It's a shame we couldn't fit that into this trip. What an awesome place...

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:14 am

coasterbill wrote:I had a great time in Vegas but I still feel like I should be a bigger Vegas fan than I really am. There are just so many other, better things to do nearby.

I feel like this nails my thoughts on Vegas exactly. I love going out there and always have a good time, but after about 2 maybe 3 days I get that "OK, I've had my fill, on to other things..." feeling. While I really enjoy the resort hotels and all the great food in town, I'm not much of a gambler at all ($20 bucks in fun-themed slots here or there) and aside from having a few beers, I don't drink the volume of alcohol that Vegas implies I should be. And oddly enough, as much as I love Broadway musicals, Cirque just doesn't do it for me.

So yeah, I like Vegas, but I don't feel the need to go there very often.

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Fri Apr 13, 2018 2:29 pm

My second home growing up was Vegas so I grew up there back when the city was not the large, urban canyon that it is now.

My great Aunt and Uncle and Aunt and Uncle lived next door to each other on a dirt road that was less than 8 miles out of downtown. Now that property is in the center of a metropolis and their houses (which they no longer own) are surrounded by 8 lane highways, high rise condos and golf communities.

Our last visit left us with the same feeling as what you and Robb mentioned & I was ready to go somewhere else after a couple of days. And we did...we drove to California and went to Knotts. :lol:

Vegas is way too over-commercialized and over-crowded for my tastes now. I loved it back in the day when the casino's were more spread out and the city had more of a western town-like charm.

If we end up going out west in the near future, it's going to be to hit up the national parks in Utah, Arizona, Colorado, California, Oregon & Washington. We'll likely skip Vegas unless my Dad is out there snow-birding in the winter and we want to go hang out with him and wife for a few days.

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Wed May 09, 2018 7:15 am

ThemeParkJunkie51290 wrote:Wonderful report! =) =) =) I'll be going to Vegas for my first time when I fly out to Cali this July. Most definitely I'm going to Adventuredome, and I really enjoyed the pictures from the High Roller Ferris Wheel. I'll be sure to add that as well! ;)


Awesome! Seriously... keep a look out for coupons. Don't pay full price to do the high roller. Thanks for reading!

bert425 wrote:
ThemeParkJunkie51290 wrote:Wonderful report! =) =) =) I'll be going to Vegas for my first time when I fly out to Cali this July. Most definitely I'm going to Adventuredome, and I really enjoyed the pictures from the High Roller Ferris Wheel. I'll be sure to add that as well! ;)


if you've never been? for sure stop to watch the Mirage Volcano (as well as the Belagio fountains).. . . and go down to Freemont to watch the Freemont Street Experience over the covered street -- if you time the evening correctly (and like seafood) you can even do the Golden Nugget's fantastic Seafood buffet they only offer once a week.. used to be on Fridays, but not sure).

and great trip report Bill! glad to see you finish it up. Next time you go, try the Wheel of Fortune slot machines. .those are brilliantly addictive too! (we pull the handle to spin every time, which makes it last longer). . LOL


Thanks! I still haven't been to Freemont street. Maybe on our next trip.


ytterbiumanalyst wrote:Looks fun! Always consult the experts. Compulsive gamblers are the experts at roulette, orcas are the experts at jet propulsion. That all checks out.


:lol: Absolutely!

Canobie Coaster wrote:Great report! The High Roller is one of the best attraction names out there and looks like a great way to take in the skyline. I'll definitely take your advice on boarding around sunset to save some money.

As for the casinos, I know I'll be tempted to play if I ever go to Vegas, but I remember just how addicting that old Colorama arcade game was. That thing ate up a ton of my tokens so I'm sort of horrified what a full on roulette wheel would do.


Yeah, you should be. Honestly, just bring however much cash you don't mind losing, chalk it up as an entertainment expense and then when you run out, leave. That's the only way to do it.

boldikus wrote:As always, lovely update. I gotta get out to Vegas.


Thanks! And yes... yes you do. It definitely seems like the type of place you'd love. Just don't make Dawn ride Manhattan Express. She may murder you. :lol:

bluestreak wrote:Good stuff as always Bill. Always look forward to your installments


JordyC wrote:Awesome update! Seems like you two had a blast. One day, I'll get out there to Vegas.. Thanks for sharing it with us!


Thanks for reading and commenting guys!

anonymouscactus wrote:The other fun memory Vegas, outside of earning free rooms and meals, was this awesome place:

http://www.pinballmuseum.org

Seriously, it's awesome.


Wow, that sounds awesome. I'm sure we'll be back since we sort of plan to use Vegas as a way to get to the southwest for next to nothing (thanks Frontier!). Maybe we'll pop in next time.

robbalvey wrote:
coasterbill wrote:I had a great time in Vegas but I still feel like I should be a bigger Vegas fan than I really am. There are just so many other, better things to do nearby.

I feel like this nails my thoughts on Vegas exactly. I love going out there and always have a good time, but after about 2 maybe 3 days I get that "OK, I've had my fill, on to other things..." feeling. While I really enjoy the resort hotels and all the great food in town, I'm not much of a gambler at all ($20 bucks in fun-themed slots here or there) and aside from having a few beers, I don't drink the volume of alcohol that Vegas implies I should be. And oddly enough, as much as I love Broadway musicals, Cirque just doesn't do it for me.

So yeah, I like Vegas, but I don't feel the need to go there very often.


Philrad71 wrote:Our last visit left us with the same feeling as what you and Robb mentioned & I was ready to go somewhere else after a couple of days. And we did...we drove to California and went to Knotts. :lol:

Vegas is way too over-commercialized and over-crowded for my tastes now. I loved it back in the day when the casino's were more spread out and the city had more of a western town-like charm.


Yeah, I definitely feel like a few days is enough. It's cool but I always feel like there's something better that I should be doing, especially since it's within a few hours of tons of National Parks if you head east or Southern California if you head west. I'm glad it's not just me.

805Andrew wrote:You packed a lot into three days and gave me memories of my visit to the Grand Canyon and various visits to Vegas. One of my favorite family trips growing up was when we spent a couple of weeks in the summer of 1996 going through Southern Utah, Northern Arizona, and ending off with a couple of nights in Vegas before going home. We camped at two different KOAs in Utah and at this weird, run down Flintstones campground just south of the Grand Canyon South Rim entrance in AZ, so staying a Best Western off the Strip at the end of the trip felt like a luxury. I really loved all the red rocks of the Grand Canyon (both rims), Bryce Canyon, Zion, and Arches, but my favorite part of my trip was going to Slide Rock State Park between Flagstaff and Sedona and destroying a swim suit on nature's waterslides (if you every go back to AZ in the summer or when its warmer I highly recommend this place). I'd love to go back that region someday and will have to check out Glen Canyon (wasn't familiar with it before). I'll also have to actually check out Hoover Dam for real and do the tour as my only experience with the Hoover Dam was crossing over it in the family minivan on our way to Vegas when it was 117F according to our thermometer and getting out for a minute to get a quick picture/look of it. When we went to Vegas I was able to convince my dad to go up the Stratosphere at night but couldn't convince him to pay for a ride on the High Roller or other rides there (the cost for going up for 5 people was enough for him) and I didn't go up it again until 2009 when the rides were different.


That sounds great! It's funny, I know I keep mentioning that trip across the country we took when we were kids but over the last few years I've finally been able to get back to those places 20 years later and it's great being able to share them with Brit. Glenn Canyon was a highlight for sure and it was just as great as I remembered, a few weeks ago we went to San Francisco and Muir Woods (more highlights from that trip) and later this year we're going to Yellowstone (which was probably the best thing on that trip period). It's awesome visiting places that you last visited as a kid. Sometimes you see them from an entirely new perspective and sometimes they're just as awesome as you remembered. Either way, it's a cool experience.

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Wed May 09, 2018 7:18 am

I saw this thread bumped and got a hyped for a new installment. What a cocktease. :lol:

Re: Coasterbill's Alcohol, Coaster and Culture Trip Reports

Wed May 09, 2018 7:22 am

boldikus wrote:I saw this thread bumped and got a hyped for a new installment. What a cocktease. :lol:


You never know what could happen later today... :lol:
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