25 miles south-east of Las Vegas, in the middle of the desert south-west, sits an engineering marvel. The Hoover Dam, built during the Great Depression of the 1930’s, spans the border between Nevada and Arizona and plays host to over a million visitors each year.
For those looking to get away from the smoke filled casinos of Las Vegas, a day trip to the Hoover Dam fits the bill. Peering over the arched face, down to the Colorado River below is spectacular, will give even the most steady individuals a bad case of wobbly knees. It’s a drop of over 726 ft. Want to see the dam from a different angle? You’re in luck!
Touring the Dam
Guided tours run a few times daily that allow you to peer up at the concrete monolith. Unfortunately, much of the dam is off limits now due to security restrictions put in place after 9/11. Still, the tour is pretty extraordinary and well worth it.
Not to be overlooked, is the massive spillway on the Arizona side of the dam. An imposing, black hole built into the rock can be a dramatic shot on its own.
What lens to use?
A wide angle lens is the go-to at the Hoover Dam. It’s a massive structure and you really should frame it within the desert landscape that it sits. At the time I took these photos, I had a Canon 30D crop sensor with a Sigma 10-20. That works out to be roughly a 16-32 on a full frame camera. Another shot that is not to be missed is shooting directly down the face of dam. Yes, you can actually shoot down the 700+ foot face of the dam!