Thursday, September 9, 2010

The St. Louis Trip Day #1

Here is a part of our vacation a couple of weeks ago. I had been up in the St. Louis Arch when I was about 8. I didn't remember much about it except for the trip to the top in the little tram and the museum underneath.

We had decided that I would take the older four children to the top of the Arch and then we would all go through the Museum of Westward Expansion. John decided at the last minute that he would rather stay down with Carol than to go up to the top (I think he became a little disconcerted when we all had to go through security to get into the Arch - 5 year old boys from Paxton aren't used to having to take their belts off for men who are dressed like policemen and then have to walk through a metal detector - however, the security team was very accommodating for a family of 9).

Below are some pictures and videos of our time at the St. Louis Arch.

1. Going through security at the Arch; we even had to take Gardner out of the stroller.
2. Laura, Grant and Joel in the tram.
3. This clip is of the ride up. There was a little sign on the door that said not to tamper with the doors; it was an offense punishable by up to 6 months in jail (and I think a fine of up to $40,000).

The first part of the trip the tram kind of "tips and rocks" and then goes up more smoothly. It's not really that bad.

4. This is the stadium where the St. Louis Cardinals play baseball.

5. To the West (into Missouri).

6. To the East (back into Illinois).

7. Up top by the windows (we didn't feel it move as some people suggest, but it was rather calm when we were up there).
8. It's not often that one looks down on a helicopter. The video made it seem as if the blades were barely moving.

9. In the tram, getting ready to descend; the video is of the descent.

10. The following pictures are from inside of the museum.
11. These next photos are directed South towards the Arch as we were walking back to the van. There was a thunderstorm approaching which really accentuated the Arch. Again, it was Laura, whose eye for pictures, encouraged these shots.

12. As we were leaving the parking garage (just before it started pouring rain), we drove right by Eads Bridge. It was built just after the Civil War, preceding the Brooklyn Bridge, and built primarily using the same method of "caissons." I'm pretty sure it was the first bridge across the Mississippi. Before Eads built the bridge, he had built armor clad river boats for the Union during the War.

Well this was the first day in St. Louis; I'll get more up later.

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