In April 2004 I once again had a good opportunity to travel around the world in scientific mission. And of course I took that opportunity. This time I "had to" go to Lake Tahoe in the USA, to present some piece of research (called "Studienarbeit" in german) on a conference. And as I was around anyway, it was not that far anymore to get to Las Vegas, to Grand Canyon and other odds and ends.
After a few days in Lake Tahoe with casinos, huge hotels, ski pistes and marinas, and of course many many extremely interesting scientific works, I took a domestic american budget airline to get to Las Vegas and pick up my rental car there. I did not see a lot of the city itself at that time, I rather wanted to see something different from casinos for a change, and that as soon as possible. And as the National Parks are rowed up around there I soon travelled from one campground to the next.
First stop was at Zion NP (Nationalpark), next at the smaller SPs (Stateparks) Coral Pink Sand Dunes and Red Canyon. When I arrived at the Bryce NP it started storming and snowing and stuff, so I continued without too much of a break right through the Grand Staircase Escalante NM (National Monument), taking the Burr Trail to Capitol Reef NP. There finally I had a break in the rain and hiked around again. Passing by at the Goblin Valley SP my route went on to Moab, to the Arches and Canyonlands NPs, and after a few hikes around there I even came to the state of Colorado and to the Mesa Verde NP. But it was raining there again, so I quickly returned towards Arizona, the Natural Bridges NM, the Gooseneck SP, to Monument Valley (which was so much smaller than I expected that I had passed by before I even noticed I had reached it). After a visit at the Antelope Slot Canyon near Page in Arizona I returned to Utah, the Grand Staircase Escalante NM and Bryce Canyon, this time with so much better weather. But my two weeks had almost passed, so I soon returned to the southern rim of Grand Canyon, then to a strip of Route 66, to the Hoover Dam and back to Las Vegas and my return flight.
Pretty stuffed program for two weeks. You can trace my route on this map. If it had not rained in the first few days I probably had saved a lot of time and travelling. This way I came to exactly 2504 miles, a little more than 4000 km. And many many photos.
Speaking of photos, this time I had two cameras with me. A small digital one with unlimited diskspace, as I carried around my laptop to the conference anyway, and additinally an ages-old reflex camera with M42 lenses and stuff. Alltogether I guess I have made about 1200 photos, most of them digitally only. That's a lot. And that's why I can't show all of my photos, as I usually do, but only the "better half" or something... that's still 420 photos...