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Couple questions about an upcoming Vegas/Grand Canyon trip..
Old 10-23-2008, 07:28 PM   #1
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Couple questions about an upcoming Vegas/Grand Canyon trip..

Me and my wife are going to vegas from jan 2 thru 8th. Our initial goal was to arrive at about 11am, and drive straight to the south rim. we'd spend the night there, the entire next day sight-seeing, and drive back sunday..leaving us sunday night and mon/tues/weds to explore vegas


Upon looking at the weather that time of year, it may not be such a great idea....or is it? How impeding can the snow get on the south rim? I imagine it wouldnt be as much to look at if snow covered...and of course less comfortable to explore? Any ideas on this?



We also are juggling 2 casinos...both have great reviews. Paris if we stay on the strip and Golden nugget off the strip. im leaning toward the nugget because there are so many good reviews vs. bad, and its a bit cheaper. but any input on this downtown vs strip debate is welcome

we also want to see a show or 2, and of course are open to ideas.


thanks!

j
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Old 10-23-2008, 08:11 PM   #2
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Our other idea was to scratch a night from the itinerary and just do a tour.... for about $450 we can both be flown in, take a helicopter ride around, snap a few pics, light lunch, and back to vegas by air. this is seeming like a good option as i learn about the weather....
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Old 10-23-2008, 08:13 PM   #3
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I stayed at the GN a few years ago and really enjoyed it. Most of the time I book a hotel on the strip.

Downtown feels like real Vegas. There is a canopy over Fremont Street that has to be seen. Casinos are closer together, so not very much walking going from place to place. The downside...most of the folks are locals...a lot of cons. Some seedy areas not too far away.

The strip is more open...you don't feel jammed up on the sidewalks like you do downtown. Most hotels are new and there are many places to shop. The downside is trying to get from one casino to another...a lot of walking involved and for me, it seems a bit more carnival than the "real" Vegas.
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Old 10-23-2008, 09:06 PM   #4
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The water show at the Bellagio is worth seeing. It's free and really great. Also there is a tram that runs around the back of most of the strip hotels. We stayed at the Hilton and made just about all the strip hotels we wanted. Each one is a little different, and it is neat to see the different themes. However, they are also all the same and have very ingenious ways of parting you from your money. Downtown is interesting, and definately old vegas. For us it was worth one night.

While I don't remember the south rim as far as snow, you won't see any in Vegas unless you go on top of Mt. Charleston. They actually skie there in the winter.

The MGM had a computer generated floor display. It was neat. It was shown on the floor and when you walked through it it changed. Free and worth seeing.
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Old 10-23-2008, 09:26 PM   #5
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The drive the the CG is rather boring except for the dam and the car search. I don't know how much snow they get but, it should be unique.
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Old 10-23-2008, 11:09 PM   #6
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We stayed down the street from the GN at the Four Queens. It was a nice place, with a good restaurant. In the evenings we'd go to Krispie Kreme and grab a couple of donuts, then go to Starbucks and grab a cup of coffee, and then sit and watch the 'Fremont Experience' overhead......that was cool....a different 'show' every hour. One of the casinos across the street from the Four Queens (don't remember which one off hand) had a nice prime rib dinner with all the trimmings for either $4.95 or $5.95......super cheap, but most excellent!

If you peruse through the discount coupon books, you can find some really good deals on meals, as well as find coupons for free play on the slots at some of the casinos.....we found a coupon that gave us play $10 free play on the slots at the GN......no additional strings attached. We played, had a free drink, then wandered around some more. We also had some free plays at the Four Queens, and a another one also. We also had buy one get one free meal coupons....breakfast and dinner.....at the FQs. Also checked out other parts of Vegas, including the Strip.

We spent 3 days there as a rest break, during our journey through the Southwest Nat'l Parks....actually 6 in the SW plus Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park in the north central part of Colorado. I spent less than $100 during the 3 days and ate and played all that I wanted to.....that is ate a lot and played a little....invested very little in the casino's bank accounts.
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Old 10-23-2008, 11:11 PM   #7
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Oh, and the weather for the GC South Rim in January......here's from the Grand Canyon N.P. website:

Quote:
Winter conditions on the South Rim can be extreme. Be prepared for snow, icy roads and trails, and possible road closures. Winter weather typically begins by November and becomes well entrenched by December and January, with frequent light to moderate snows and increasingly colder weather. Low temperatures are generally in the teens along the Rim; however afternoon high temperatures still average in the 40s (4-9C), due to the amount of sunshine the area receives. Along the river, cold air typically becomes trapped in the canyon leading to high temperatures only in the 40s and 50s (4-15C) and low temperatures in the 30s and 40s (-1C-+9C). Even with all of the winter sunshine, significant snowfall can be expected during the winter with an average snowfall of 50 to over 100 inches (1.3-2.5m) per year on the Rim, and occasionally snow will make it even to the river. Between storms, when dry high pressure builds in, winds become light, and fresh snow cover is on the ground, minimum temperatures can plummet, especially on the Rim, with sub-zero temperatures likely. Snow continues to be possible at the higher elevations through April. During the winter and early spring months, fog occasionally forms due to radiational cooling from snow cover on the ground. However, this fog usually breaks up quickly by morning.
I'll stick with Florida in the winter!
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Old 10-24-2008, 12:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefed View Post
Our other idea was to scratch a night from the itinerary and just do a tour.... for about $450 we can both be flown in, take a helicopter ride around, snap a few pics, light lunch, and back to vegas by air. this is seeming like a good option as i learn about the weather....
Hi.

I was stationed at Vegas for about 2 years and while I was there, I had a sister and my mom come visit. One of the things we "had" to do (being so "close") was go see the Grand Canyon.

The easiest thing I found to do was to book a tour (from Vegas) were you got to fly out in the morning, look at the canyon and then fly home. Unless you want to wander around the canyon, this was enough to get some good photos and be able to say "I've been there."

I booked tours where you were picked up at a hotel by a bus, taken to the airport, flown out to the canyon and then picked up by another bus for a canyon rim tour (some even include lunch). We weren't flown via helicopter and that made the price a little cheaper than the $450 you're looking at.

The tour packages were all pretty easy to find and all were in the same price range (just depended on what you wanted to do at the canyon).

They were good tours and saved a lot of hassle in that someone else took care of the transportation issues.

IMHO, I think you'd like that a lot better - less hassle and easier than figuring out all the driving and such by yourselves.

Just my $.02, YMMV.

Marilyn
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