Posted July 05, 2015 in: Announcement
Official meet up time was 8 a.m., but some members arrived earlier to see the falls, canals, and locks before the area got too crowded.
There are several locks within a short stretch of the canal, each with their own look and beauty.
The Great Falls Overlook is so noisy you can barely speak to each other, with pretty views of the water, rapids, rocks, and sometimes kayakers upstream and downstream. It was fun to watch kayakers maneuver through the rushing water and drops through the rapids.
The Charles F. Mercer packet boat and the visitor center itself are great photo subjects with their reflections in the water of the canal.
We chose to do the mule drawn boat ride on the Charles F. Mercer to experience a small part of travel up the canal as it was done in the past. People in period dress crew the boat and locks. They are the “human mules” to get the boat into the lock. Then, once through the lock, the actual mules are hooked up to pull the boat a little way up the canal before turning around to return to the starting point. It is a pretty fun experience to rise up in the lock from low enough that the ground is about at your head level, then slowly come even with the second story of the visitor center!
After the boat ride, we grabbed some lunch at the picnic area, where geese with their fuzzy yellow goslings weren’t the least bit shy about begging lunch. We enjoyed getting some close up shots of these natives of the area.
Some of us then watched the next tour of the Charles F. Mercer, getting the experience from canal-side, this time. It was a very warm day, so we didn’t envy the crew in their long dresses or long shirtsleeves and boots and stockings.
All in all, this is a lovely spot with great photo opportunities. I’m looking forward to going again someday just to see how far down the canal I can hike and what other picturesque areas I can find.
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