Day 216 : Yeeeee Haaaaaaaaaaaaa

18 February 2011

High Point: Helicopter Flight over the Grand Canyon. Compliments of Grand Canyon Ranch we had a SPECTULAR start to the day dropping in over the West Rim in an awesome chopper. Wow wow wow wow, does it get much better or bigger? Our end of the Canyon is the narrowest but still HUGE at 14 miles wide. How big? Well the chopper pilot (let’s call him Stringfellow Hawk) pointed out what looked like a radio controlled helicopter, a great indicator of the vastness of this Canyon. Awesome times two.

Low Point: Landing in the chopper as Amy had just moments before recreating her now famous chunder on the cargo ship.

No Point: Waking up at 5.30am as we all got the time wrong (the Ranch operates the same time as Vegas)

Game Point: Team FTFE beating Phoenix Fire Department in a game of ping pong. Bosh.

Grand Granyon Ranch were incredibly hospitable with a complimentary stay at their wild west ranch, horse riding and a ride in a chopper over the Grand Canyon. Driving a fire engine around the world is an expensive pastime so very generous people like the Ranch owners make all the difference (the expedition is fully funded by the crew and 100% of what we raise goes straight to the charities).  After a very hearty breakfast it was time to for a bit of early morning horse riding.  What a lovely part of the world they are blessed to live in and a wonderful way of life. Being a cowboy is definitely in the top five jobs you want to when your are boy; campfires, sing songs, shoot outs, horse riding, lassoing and hanging out with a cool hat on.

So the long road to Phoenix, big tunes, a traffic jam, some shouting and classic scenery. Rob and Ben’s last drive so a real treat. Both these boys love driving the rig so I am sure they will treasure such an afternoon. They will also treasure yet another example of USA hospitality, this time at station 30 in Phoenix. FTFE’s new best friend Captain G Hawk (the best name we have ever heard) organised press, fish and chips, a bed for the night and the opportunity to ride with the lads from Phoenix on a few shouts. What an experience it was smashing through the streets of Phoenix in a big red rig, lights and horns blaring and seeing first hand what these great men go through everyday.
Our own room at station 30 so it’s good night from Phoenix. If you get a fire in the night chaps please be quiet as I’m such a tired boy.


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