Return to the Red Rocks. Day 16: Warm Springs.

(Las Vegas, Nevada)

9 December 2022

We woke up early, before 8am, but no doubt we were still on Mountain Time, where it would have been an hour later. The sunrise was lighting up the Sunset Casino, visible through our window. You could also see snow still on the mountain tops. I remember being very excited by that when we arrived, but after all of the recent snow, it now seemed very distant.

After we’d had breakfast we drove down Warm Springs towards Vegas, the mountains looking majestic across the valley. Our destination was the Columbia outlet store, which opened at 1000. We arrived at 1005. After an hour of browsing and trying on, followed by time at the till, we emerged and returned back to our hotel room, via Warm Springs, for a bit of extra packing…

Check out time was 11am, but we’d managed to get an extension to 2pm, so we were able to relax, eat random snacks (hiking energy butter, chocolate chip cookies, crisps and a cup of tea!), shower and change for our flight home, and even watch penalties in a World Cup football match. Even though we didn’t check out until 2pm, we didn’t need to be at the airport until around 6pm. So, we considered going axe throwing…

No, we didn’t really. That was just next to our hotel. Instead we drove to the District, (yes, down Warm Springs again) where we could browse the REI store (without buying anything) and, importantly, get something to eat. Our choice, as usual, was Rachel’s Diner. We were served by a human, but another couple’s food was delivered to their table by robot…

It was getting a bit cool, so we went to the car and turned it around so that we could watch the sunset over the mountains. The colours changed a lot over the hour we were there.

We left just before 5pm, went back along Warm Springs (there are other roads in Vegas, but clearly we don’t need to know them), arrived at the car rental return centre, and had deposited the car within half an hour. We have driven nearly 1500 miles, and spent over 34 hours in the car in the last two weeks…I’m not quite sure how we fitted the hiking in!

The shuttle bus took us to terminal 3, all nicely decked out for Christmas. There was no queue at check in, which was only disappointing because we could have had priority…regardless, we were speedily processed, watched our bags get tagged, and then headed through security (which was a little confusing, but we got through eventually).

We are now sat in the lounge, where we probably have another hour to relax, before they commence boarding our flight. We’re quite looking forward to it because, two days before we left home, Andrew realised that he had a lot of air miles. A lot. I phoned up the airline and we managed to get an upgrade using miles for this return flight, so…upper class, here we come!

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