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Many Adventures

June 9, 2007

Today we had to go to Buffalo to take Sarah to the Doctor to have a cyst on her finger looked at. Her appointment was for mid afternoon so we had some time to kill in the morning. We decided that the Zoo was the place to go. We got there to find 13 school buses that were either in the process of dropping off their students or parked after having dropped them off. We had parked in Delaware Park and walked around the zoo in an effort to avoid the parking fee. As we passed the Buffalo, I had to take his picture.

This guy, or gal, decided the heat was just too much. Yes this character is standing in the “watering hole.”

As we neared the entrance, the sound was deafening. There must have been about 200 to 250 youngsters (under the age of 10) standing in line with their accompanying adults. We decided the line was too long (even though we’re members and could take the “short” line), and the noise too much. Niagara Falls was second on our list so off we went.

When Ferdinand, my Magellan gps system, nearly sent us over the border to Canada, I made a quick exit and traveled along Rt. 104. I had planned to go to the Falls, like we always do, but signs for Devil’s Hole and the Whirpool Park caught my attention, so we stopped at the Whirlpool Park. We started on a trail that runs along the top of the Niagara Gorge.

The girls are headed down to the path.

This is the spectacular view that we enjoyed.

…looking into the gorge…

…and the swirling, rapidly moving waters of the mighty Niagara River.

The girls stopped to take a rest on this cool rock that they said I must take a picture of.

These pretty little flowers were everywhere. Unfortunately this picture does not do their color justice. They added a wonderful punch of color to the hazy day and the green of all the vegetation.

I think the person who owns this abode must be crazy. If you look closely in the middle of the picture, you can see a house sitting very near the escarpment on the Canadian side of the gorge. I would NOT want to live there!

As we walked along, we found this “hidden” stairwell. As we began our descent, we got really excited. The stairs must have been there forever and were obviously made of stone found in the gorge. I think we must have traveled down about 1/2 a mile into the gorge, putting us about 15 feet above the level of the river. The noise of the rushing water was incredible, and the temperature must have dropped about 5 degrees or so as we went into the gorge.

I must add here, that I learned two very important lessons today.
1) Always bring sneakers…you never know when you may need them. Crocs are not good trail shoes.
2) Always bring extra batteries for the camera. This was the last picture I was sure I would get, because the batteries were too low to truly run the camera. I had to keep turning it off and on to get any more pictures.

I had taken a really cool picture of a stone picnic table hidden in a flat spot surrounded by trees. There were 3 or 4 of these tables in different spots along the way. I want to return some day soon and take a picnic lunch.

This was the very last picture I was able to eek out while on our walk. This large rock is sitting in the river and just looks so cool. We were only about 10 or 15 feet above it. Kyle wondered if it was a petrified tree, as it was about the right color.
This was an amazing adventure that I am sure we will repeat sometime in the near future.
Oh, I did learn one other thing today…I am VERY out of shape. When I was so tired I didn’t think I could go on, I began counting the stairs as we ascended. We were about 3 “flights” from the top and I counted 87 stairs. I figure all together there were probably 500 or so!

One comment

  1. Wow, what an adventure! This looks like you were really *roughing* it!
    The kids must have had a great time. I love all the pictures. I think all of those stairs would wear me out. Just *thinking* about those stairs wears me out!!!!



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