Las Vegas Excursions: Helicopter Rides To The Grand Canyon’s West Rim

Image from page 100 of “A flying trip to the tropics. A record of an ornithological visit to the United States of Colombia, South America and to the island of Curaçao, West Indies, in the year 1892” (1895)
Identifier: flyingtriptotrop00robi
Title: A flying trip to the tropics. A record of an ornithological visit to the United States of Colombia, South America and to the island of Curaçao, West Indies, in the year 1892
Year: 1895 (1890s)
Authors: Robinson, Wirt, b. 1864
Subjects: Birds Natural history
Publisher: Cambridge [Mass.] Riverside press
Contributing Library: The Library of Congress
Digitizing Sponsor: The Library of Congress

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with broad bands ofgray and black. Its body, which was about the size of our rabbits,was green with black marks. Along its back was a row of leath-ery spines (longer than in the species figured), and beneath itsthroat was a pouch or dewlap. I skinned its body, and got one ofthe bongo men to cure the skin for me by rubbing it with wood-ashes. Its flesh, which is eaten by the natives, looked good, and Inoticed that it had the same odor as that of our bull-frog. At thisplace there were a few Indian huts, and around them a small grove THE MAGDALENA RIVER. 73 of cacao-trees, from which chocolate is made. They were notover twenty-five feet high, smooth barked and big leaved. The fruitlooked very much like an oblong warty squash, and grew close tothe main trunk and large limbs. They were about eight incheslong, some green, others a deep purplish red, and when cut openshowed a white pith in which were imbedded bean-like seeds thesize of our lima beans but thicker. These, when ripe, are taken

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IGUANA TUBEECULATA. out, roasted, and then ground between two stones, mixed withcoarse sugar, and the result is chocolate. Hung up against one ofthe huts to dry, I saw several peccary skins of the plain unhandedspecies (Bicotyles labiatus). I was told that they were common inthe forest here. Lower down along the river the native huts are made of a wattleof split bamboo, or small sticks, daubed with mud and thatchedwith palm-leaves (see page 55), but here the walls are made in a 74 A FLYING TRIP TO THE TROPICS. different manner. The large cane or bamboo, the guaduas, whichoften is six inches in diameter, is taken and partially split in anumber of places about an inch apart, after which the whole tubecan be opened out, making a very rough plank from a foot toeighteen inches in width. These are lashed to the framework withbark or slender vines. We also saw many huts with nothing buta roof and the four corner posts, protection from the sun and rainbeing all that was required. The natives

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tags If you are planning to visit Las Vegas, be sure you include a Grand Canyon West Rim helicopter tour. There are three kinds of flights from which to choose, and I’m very sure that there’s a trip that’s just right for you.

The classic air-only ride is your most basic flight. It basically helicopters to the rim, does some awesome fly overs, and returns. You can upgrade this trip to include tickets to the Grand Canyon Skywalk or to land at the bottom of the canyon. Here’s a closer look at each of the these West Rim helicopter tours:

Air Tour

A great introduction to the canyon. Includes a ton of West Rim highlights, including Eagle Point, Guano Point, the Skywalk, and the Colorado River. Upgrade to include a flight over the fabulous Las Vegas Strip on the return. Sunrise and sunset flights are available.

Skywalk Grand Canyon Tour

Land at the new Grand Canyon West airstrip. Enter the Skywalk and be prepared to walk 70 feet past the edge and to be lifted some 4,000 feet above the mighty Colorado River. Enjoy a BBQ lunch. Ride the free shuttle service to all major rim-top sights. Explore a realistic Hualapai Indian Village.

Landing Tour

Canyon carve 4,000 feet downwards to the base of the canyon. Deplane. Toast your descent with Champagne under a real Indian Ramada. Explore the canyon’s ancient floor. Feeling really adventurous? Add a pontoon raft ride down the Colorado river.

Most helicopter tours include free shuttle bus pick up and drop off to all hotels on the Las Vegas Strip. Landing and Skywalk trips are led by professional pilot-guides and include a delicious lunch. Internet prices start at $ 230 per person.

Trips take off year round from the Vegas metropolitan area and fly over Lake Mead, the biggest man-made reservoir in the U.S., Hoover Dam, the brand new Mike O’Callaghan-Pat Tillman Bridge, and the majestic Grand Cliffs Wash. I see these extra sights as a huge bonus, especially since helicopters fly at a lower altitude than airplanes and give you a spectacular bird’s eye view of them.

I strongly suggest that you book your Las Vegas helicopter tour in advance. Peak season is spring and summer and low season is winter. Flights are limited, popular, and sell out quickly, especially sunrise and sunset tours. If you are lucky enough to book a flight within 24 hours of your departure, I can assure you that you will pay a premium.

Always get your flights online. Tour operators are very generous with discounts on their websites, some even giving up to 35% off on select packages. I buy all my trips on the Web, and can attest that these sites are secure and safe when processing your credit-card transaction.

Las Vegas canyon helicopter tours deliver loads of fun and adventure. The West Rim is home to the Grand Canyon Skywalk, and it’s the only place where you can land at the bottom of the Grand Canyon and take an optional boat ride down the Colorado River. If you’re looking for a Grand Canyon experience that comes with a huge “wow” factor, book a helicopter flight. It’s an activity that will make this Las Vegas trip magical.

Travel expert Keith Kravitz rates and reviews tours to the Grand Canyon. Here’s his list of the best Grand Canyon Helicopter tours to the West Rim…