Whew! Back from the Falls, weary, a tad sunburned, but no worse for the wear. We had sunny and cool conditions all day. We drove out on the Lake Ontario State Parkway. No trucks allowed. Many glimpses of Lake Ontario. Where I learned to drive over twenty years ago. It runs 35 miles from Charlotte, a beach burb north of Rochester. Then it was a nice drive on route 18 to the Niagara Gorge.
We splurged and purchased the Passport, which pretty much gets you into everything on the US side. We were told two forms of photo ID or a birth certificate were required to touch base in Canada. We had Brit’s, but not ours. But that was okay. We did a lot of walking: visitor center to Goat Island. (Brittany didn’t believe me that it was actually called that.) We watched tons of water pour off dolomite from the various lookouts. Then it was time for the Cave of the Winds, which apparently has been open air for decades. You don flimsy rain gear and sandals and make your way along catwalks to the very base of the Bridal Veil, that skinny fall of water between the American Falls and Goat Island.We trekked back to the mainland and caught a trolley for the aquarium, which was a pleasant break from getting sprayed and UV’ed. Lucy (pictured) says hello to y’all. (Sarcasm alert) She prefers “and also with you,” by the way.
I really liked the Niagara Gorge Discovery Center. A timeline of the progress of the Falls over the past 12,000 years (sorry, creationists) eating its way up the Niagara River. I learned about the prehistorical Lake Tonawanda, the three different falls which have now caught up with each other at Goat Island, and the possible future of Niagara Falls as white water rapids near the present city of Buffalo. Another option would be if the Great Lakes began to drain into the Mississippi basin through the Chicago River. Then Niagara would all dry up.
We capped the day with a Maid of the Mist tour, which had us all laughing in the roar and mist. We certainly saved the best for last, as the late afternoon sun was behind us, treating us to nearly full-circle rainbows in the mist of the falls. The outlooks have their own interest, as does the catwalk and “Hurricane Deck” near the base of Bridal Veil, but the boat ride to the base of the falls is beyond words.