Wednesday, July 21, 2010

tourist traps in the mist

7/14 Driving to Chelsea, MI by way of Niagara

We had a full day of driving to get our next destination back in the U.S.A. but Niagara was close enough to our route that we thought we should make the detour. Large scale landscapes are always a challenge to capture with the camera but I think mrs. a-go-go would agree that this one is a particularly tough nut to crack. This is compounded by the piles of hotels and casinos surrounding the river banks.

Approaching Niagara from the Canada side, we had been warned, would be an over load of tourist madness. Too true. I had done some internet research the day before trying to find and easy place to stop close to the falls where we could stop for a bit and satisfy our need to lay eyes on this fabled romantic spot. That seems to be a tall order. There is very little information other than how to book a room at a hotel or where to gamble or where to take the kids for dinner. On a satellite map I spotted what looked like a public park right on the bluff above the falls, perfect.

No so fast, buster... the roads near the falls are more confusing than you might think and we made many wrong turns. There are very few signs other than the ones leading you to the various attractions; "travel BEHIND the falls!" "best odds here!" "helicopter rides!" We found a place to park were it looked like we could walk to the falls and set out on foot.

This turned out to be OK but not what we were after. The path led us to a casino/hotel that had a view of the falls but from some distance. We could see the park I had located earlier on the map just down a steep slope from where we stood. There had to be a way to get there. On our way to the car a couple from Germany with kids stopped us to ask if this was the way to the falls. They were in the same pickle as us. They just wanted to stop by, see the falls and move on. We told them what we had been able to see and wished them luck as they walked to the casino.

There were lots of pretty flowers along the path as we walked back through the mist that teased us from below.

With a little more effort we found our way to the park on the cliff but it was mobbed with people. Not surprising at all but the parking was $20. Gadz. Too rich for our budget. mrs. a-go-go leaped from the car like a green beret on a mission and I steered Rodney to circle back allowing enough time for her to get the photos she wanted. I picked her up on the return trip and we got out'a town. Shoo!

Niagra is really impressive and worth a stop but I don't know what to suggest to those of you wish to make it a quick stop. The tourist megalopolis doesn't make it easy.

It was along day of driving and after making our way through customs at the border and on to Chelsea, Michigan it was time for dinner and a rest. Our hosts in Michigan were ready and made our wish come true.

1 comment:

  1. Only man would take a God given creation and turn it for a profit. I hear it is breathtaking. Be safe.



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