Where the hell is Pahrump?
Next stop is a place called Pahrump. We've never heard of it before, but it's an airbnb within an hours drive to Death Valley and it's all we could get.
We check out of the hotel and walk on the Strip to find somewhere for brunch. We end up at Denny's, a casual American diner chain. Mark and I order steak and eggs (a treat my dad used to make sometimes - happy memories) and Marcus has the works including pancakes.
Once fed and watered we take an escalator over the mock Rialto bridge. The escalator actually goes up, over and then down the other side. I've never seen anything like it but Mark reminds me that we actually went up escalators which curved round in a half circle yesterday in Caesers Palace. Stairs don't appear to be in the vocabulary in Vegas.
We have a look around the Venetian with it's gondolas on a canal, St Mark's square, restaurants, shops and entertainment. If you're never going to get the chance to visit the real thing this does give a flavour of Venice. We stand and watch some of the entertainers in the square including musicians, singers and marionettes (an adult woman controlled by a man on stilts).
On leaving the hotel we see Madam Tussauds, where Marcus poses alongside Van Diesel. to be honest I didn't know who it was but I assumed by the stance that he acted in action movies. We the make our way back to our hotel and the car.
There's a bit of a nightmare leaving the car park as roads are closed and the sat-nav starts to go bonkers re-routing continually which is really quite disconcerting. Eventually after going round in ever decreasing circles we manage to hit the highway to Los Angeles. The roads out of Vegas are as busy as the ones in and traffic fills the lanes. I'm glad to turn off this Interstate onto the state highway to Pahrump.
The landscape is still rocky desert but we pass hundreds of different types of cactus, some looking like miniature Joshua trees. The road is straight and long and looks to go on forever and ever. The town of Pahrump is in the heart of the Mohave desert and is about 60 miles west of Las Vegas on the Nevada/California border.
As we reach this town we have never heard of we are pleasantly surprised. It lies in the valley surrounded by mountains on all sides. It also looks reasonably sized with shops, restaurants and bars. Much of the housing is bungalows and they look relatively new. The state road cuts right through the centre of the town with buildings spread on both sides of it.
We find our accommodation for the next three nights. A lovely three bedroom bungalow on a large plot looking up towards the mountains. We are delighted with the place and go food shopping planning on a BBQ for dinner.
We spend the afternoon relaxing in the back garden (definitely needed after Las Vegas) and catch some rays. Mark BBQ's and we eat outside in the sun. It's like being on holiday and the whole ambience reminds us of our holidays in Murcia at Roda. However, we are soon reminded that it is the last day in September as the sun quickly sinks and has completely disappeared by 7 p.m.
We have all appreciated this more restful day as tomorrow it's back hiking in the largest of the National Parks outside of Alaska.