With a lively downtown, densely populated with huge skycrapers, including the tallest in USA, Chicago is one of the biggest cities in US. I had abt two days there, which was not enuf to explore the city and its surroundings.
Preetha, in front of the Sears Towers entrance. With 110 floors and over 1700ft, this building stayed the tallest in the world for almost 25 years, until Petronas towers (and later Taipei 101) came into being. It is still the tallest in US and its antennas are the tallest in the world.
Downtown Chicago from the top of Sears Skydeck, in the night. All these buildings which looked tall when I was walking arnd the downtown, looks puny from the top.
French Canyon in the Starved Rocks State Park, during a small hike. Starved Rocks, near Utica, is about 90 miles from Chicago and accessible through the I-55 south & I-80 west. The place is famous for the Native American cultures which thrived there and in particular, fables abt some warriors being starved to death there, during a battle.
Starved Rock State Park, offers many fascinating rock formations and overlooks of the Illinois River, which forms numerous small Canyons on its way, including this French Canyon.
While returning back from the Starved Rock State Park, we hit vast fields in Utica with flowers in full bloom. Especially at this place, the density of flowers was so high. The white flower in this pic is known by different names ranging from Queen Anne's lace, Bishop's lace or Wild Carrots, the scientific name being Daucus Carota.
Now, this is a place where the density of skyscrapers were so high. Once again from the top of Sears towers, but this time during the day.
The infrastructure in US is supposed to be the best in the world. With intersections and freeways like this being a common sight throughout the country, rural or urban, I didnt have any trouble believing that claim. The circle interchange in the picture is the intersection between I-290 and I-90/94 as seen from the top of Sears Towers.
This is the 'Cloud Gate' - a 66ft x 33ft x 42ft sized, 110 tons structure by Anish Kapoor, made of stainless steel plates polished into one continuous finish, built over a fortified steel frame, located in the Millenium Park of Chicago.
Jay Pritzker Pavillion is another marvel in the Millenium Park. It has abt 4000 fixed seats and a huge lawn which can accomodate an additional 7000 people. The crisscrossing steal pipes supports the sound system.
Boats in Lake Michigan, just before sunset.
A pair of ducks in the Lake Michigan.
On our way back ... in the late evening. The rectangular column in the front is called Crown Fountain, with a 50ft glass block towers, capable of projecting video images - basically faces of Chicago citizens. A water outlet in the middle of the screen shall give the impression of water coming out of their mouths.
The top of Sears Towers seen through couple of other skyscrapers. The construction of Sears Towers is interesting in itself. It starts off with a 3x3 block cross section, two of the corner blocks stopping @ almost 1/3rd height. Two more corner blocks goes away later, leaving a cross shaped cross section. Towards the end, three more blocks stops and only the remaining two blocks go all the way. The final 80m / 280ft is the antenna, making it a total of 527m/1730ft.