Rare Opportunity; Incredible View

I got an exceptional opportunity during this seminar I'm attending here in Las Vegas.  We were given an insider tour of The Cosmopolitan Resort.  The highlight of the tour was the opportunity to view the splendor of Las Vegas from 71 floors on high.  I took this Panorama photo with my iPhone and shortly after the Bellagio started their water fountain show so i recorded that as well.  Not many people can say they've seen this from this viewpoint.

 

Here's a video of the Bellagio's Water Fountain Show from on high.  It wasn't the whole thing because we had to leave to get back to class.

Valley of Fire State Park

I spent the day at Valley of Fire State Park near Las Vegas.  This is a strange and fantastic area that features large red sandstone rocks coming out of the desert.  Most the areas are easily accessible from the scenic road with some longer hiking trails available.

Look What I Found

I arrived here in Vegas around 2pm after 20+ hours of traveling from Okinawa.  I slept fairly well on the ride from Osaka to San Francisco so in an effort to avoid jet lag, I decided to "do something" until late evening so I could go to sleep at a regular time.  In that vain I went straight to a camera store from the airport and bought a new bag and a Variable ND filter.  Then had Chipotle for an early dinner; one of my favorites when visiting the States.  Then went to Hoover Dam area to get some photos of the sunset.  I didn't have a plan of where to go so I just went there and followed my intuition.  I was lucky in that I found a dirt road (Kingmans Wash) that eventually led to a beach at Lake Mead with a direct view of the sunset.  I hiked around the area looking for various compositions and think I got a couple keepers.  It's very late now and should get to sleep; I want to go to Valley of Fire State Park in the morning.  I worked on this one on the laptop and may reprocess when I get home, but I'll post it anyway.