Growing up I liked to play in the dirt and mud. I had a dump truck and toy trucks and I would spend my afternoons getting muddy and just playing.
Over time I gave up the toy trucks and moved to dolls and other toys. Yet I always wondered what it would be like to drive a big piece of machinery.
I always wondered when I saw the people running excavators and bull dozers what it would be like to maneuver a big piece of machinery.
Would I be scared?
Would it be a total rush of adrenaline?
How in the world would I convince someone to let me sit at the controls and work their excavator?
I have had these thoughts for years. Always wondering but never really thinking I would have the opportunity to actually fulfill this bucket list dream.
Thankfully it is 2014 and dreams come true daily! My dream came true in Las Vegas where I had the chance to drive and use an excavator at Dig This Vegas!
Dig This Vegas invited me to visit during our trip and experience my bucket list dreams.
Let me just tell you if this is one of your dreams or bucket list items it is so fun!!!!
My experience at Dig This Vegas started with my very first breathalyzer test. I am happy to say I blew a 0.00! Each customer is required to take a breathalyzer test before starting the safety orientation.
The safety orientation covered the equipment we would be using and the safety zone that are set up in the construction yard.
My class consisted of 4 of us from around the country. Each of us excited and a bit nervous.
As we walked out to the yard the other female in the group asked if I had ever driven one before. We smiled at each other knowing that we were about to fulfill a lifetime dream that always seemed unattainable. We exchanged the look of 2 people who are nervous, excited and hoping we don’t kill anyone with the giant piece of machinery we are about to hop into.
Once I was in my excavator I took a deep breath and sent John a quick text message that I was excited, nervous and praying that he took a ton of pictures of my experience.
Our instructor was amazing! He talked us through basic maneuvering of the excavator before we started any of the exercises. We learned how to maneuver the boom and open and close the giant bucket. We also learned how to drive the excavator which is really different than driving a car.
Our first task was to maneuver forward and dig a trench. This is about the time I broke into a giant grin and just giggled.
There is nothing that quite describes the feeling of scooping dirt and creating a big ol pile. I flashed back to being a kid and playing in the dirt. I found myself relaxing and having an almost zen moment. I was so at peace in the excavator just digging a big hole. I didn’t think about anything other than just digging a hole. It was so dang fun and relaxing.
Once our holes were dug we had moved our excavators to another area in the yard. Can I just tell you that moving a big excavator is thrilling, bumpy and a bit nerve wracking. holy cow those things are giant!
Our next skill was to move giant tires from one end of the field to another.
I had never really thought about how strong the buckets of an excavator are until I picked up a giant tractor tire and it folded in half in the bucket. Note to self never get in the way of an excavator bucket
We moved tires from one end of the yard to the other and stacked them on top of each other. This was a lot of fun and a took a bit more concentration and finesse than I had expected it too.
I took this video with my cell phone while maneuvering one of the tires. It was a bit interesting driving an excavator one handed but I made it happen 🙂
Driving an excavator and maneuvering it is truly an art. I have so much respect for the guys and gals running these daily.
Our final task was basketball with an excavator.
We had to pick a basketball up off a cone and try to make a bucket in a tire. Remember when I mentioned that the bucket can squish a tractor tire in half easily…..imagine trying to get a regular size basketball into the bucket and not smash it.
It was one of my favorite moments of the entire experience. Slowly but surely lowering the bucket and gently picking up the basketball was so gratifying ….when I made the bucket I let out a huge giggle and totally had a moment of joy.
Our session ended with receiving our certificate of accomplishment for safely driving our excavators and not killing our guides.
The time I spent at Dig This Las Vegas was beyond amazing! This location offers each of us an opportunity to fulfill our bucket list dreams of driving big machinery in a safe environment.
You can also drive a bulldozer at Dig This! Check out this great video showing the bulldozer in action
3012 S. Rancho Drive
Las Vegas, NV 89102
Dig This is located on a 5-acre site. Dig This is a short (5-10 minute) cab ride from The Strip.
Inquiries & Reservations (individuals and groups): 702.222.4344/888.344.8447
Operations, Pricing & Packages:
7 days/week, 8:00 am – 5:30 pm
Big Dig sessions $249.00: 8-9:30 am, 10-11:30 am, 12-1:30 pm, 2-3:30 pm, 4-5:30 pm
Mega Dig sessions $449.00: back-to-back combo of Big Dig sessions
Group, special event, corporate programming, twilight sessions available (call for info)
Minimum age: 14 yrs.