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I am a retired English teacher and department head, the mother of three, grand mother of three, and have been married to the same man for 42 years. I subscribe to Dr. PM Forni's concept of Civility. I was born in South Philadelphia and grew up in the 'burbs. I love soft pretzels and cheesesteaks, the Phillies, the Eagles, and San Diego. I love being Mom, Aunt Kathy, Nona Kathy, and Teacher. I spend a lot of time in my gardens in the spring and summer, and in the winter I plan what I'm going to plant. I also am an avid reader and photographer.

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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Magnificent Great Falls Park, Virginia

Great Falls Park is situated on both sides (Maryland and Virginia) of the Potomac River.  We decided to visit the park on Sunday because I thought the mist from the falls would make us feel a bit cooler.  Never mind that the river at the falls is about 200 feet below -- in a gorge carved out in over a million years.

The temperature when we arrived was a toasty 93°, the humidity high.  The park was busy with picnicers and families all having the same idea we did.  And although there were many, many people,  at no time did we feel crowded.  We walked in the shade where we could and although there was a slight breeze, we were not cooled by the mist as I had anticipated.  Signs everywhere warned people to wear hats and drink plenty of water. 

One of the first signs tells visitors about the three points overlooking the falls and rates them for proximity and view.

Three views of the falls....
Panoramic...
The right side....
The left side...

 Realizing we are looking down about 200 feet,  this high water marker with the dates of the most significant floods impressed us!  The over-looks are substantially to the left of this sign.

We then decided to walk the path along the Virginia-side, Patowmack Canal.  The canal on the Maryland side -- connecting Cumberland, MD to Washington, DC is the famous B & O Canal. 


We came across the home of a Hobbitt...

And after leaving, opted for the back roads through Leesburg and across the Potomac on White's Ferry -- a crossing that costs only $4.00 one way and takes all of five minutes, but an adventure nevertheless.

17 comments:

Happyone :-) said...

What a great place to go for a hike. I'll have to get out there some time!!
Those high water marks are impressive!!

George said...

Thanks for taking us along to this beautiful park. The ferry looks as if it would be a nice adventure, but I really appreciated the views of the falls. This place is on our 'to visit' list.

Purple Flowers said...

What a great outing! I also like to go to a shady park or forest to help w/the heat. I love the dappled sunlight through the tree leaves, and most of all the mist of the waterfalls. I love me a waterfall or two. The sounds are sweet to my soul.
Glad you had a nice time!

jane said...

man! it´s beautiful!
i´m catching up on your posts- i´ve missed coming here:)

Carla said...

Very pretty place! Love the pics of the falls.

Sweet Virginia Breeze said...

I never had heard of Great Falls Park. Looks like a wonderful place to spend an afternoon. We'll have to make it one of our day trip destinations.

Theresa said...

I love this park. I went to grad school in DC. Come see what we did, a music video. :)

Kimberly said...

Looks gorgeous!! I love hiking around gorges!

Gilly said...

Now that looks like the sort of place I would adore! I love water, especially rushing water, rocks and BIG falls!

And that Ferry reminds me of a couple over here, one in the Lake District, only it doesn't carry quite as many cars - and takes about 10 minutes! But fun!

A Slice of My Life said...

That is a scary little ferry. I get nervous on our big huge ferries that hold over 100 cars.

Palm Springs Savant said...

I've been to GFP, it is so beautiful! You are lucky to have it so close.

Maggie said...

Marvelous....except for the heat. Boy that was hot there. Beautiful tho. I lived there two years and never knew about that.

Seth M. Ward said...

It's been 20 plus years since I went to the Great Falls. Thanks for posting this. I forgot how beautiful it was. Hope you are well. Please keep me in your prayers for this trucking job I am trying for tomorrow.

beachgirl said...

I can't believe I lived in Northern Virginia for 8 years and we never took our kids to that park. Gorgeous.

Snappy Di said...

I miss Maryland so so much. Hubby loves it here, but if I had my druthers would return to live in your town. Boo hoo me.

Di

Lena said...

The falls are just beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

Cheryl said...

I've never been to the falls. I like that you had the idea that the mist might cool you. You were brave!