Sunday, July 10, 2016

Hiking at Harper's Ferry

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The weekend after the 4th of July my son again chose where we'd go for our stay-cation. Harper's Ferry. After many a successful drive to the visitor center of Harper's Ferry, this time the gps caused us to get hopelessly lost! What an adventure!  We ended up on a river road on the side of the mountain that was quite narrow. (I think the problem was the gps upgrade. Really, things have gotten crazier since that.)

Eventually we were on the correct trajectory and our drive across the bridge showed Harper's Ferry in the distance. I've always been fascinated how it's built into the side of the mountain.

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We had a picnic lunch at the visitor center. This time we found the picnic tables!

Finally it was time to hike up Maryland Heights! We did this a few years ago in 2014, climbing to the very, very top, Stone Fort Overlook. Alas on the way down I tumbled down the mountain trail, twisting my ankle and bruising myself quite a bit. That really shook me up but I finally healed and I was ready to try again. The descent is so steep that we kept our eye out and at the very same spot we had more trouble, but we conquered and all was well! Nevertheless this hike up the mountain was to the immediate overlook of Harper's Ferry.

The hike up here is quite historic. During the Civil War cannons were hauled up the same trail. What a feat!

My husband caught me taking pictures while balancing on the rock. That is always quite the feat for me because I only have one balance nerve! I was not about to go climbing the way my family was climbing.


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For example, I was not about to go down to where my son was. Nope, noway.

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My husband caught my son taking pictures...

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Finally my son took this picture of us...by setting it to auto timer and precariously balancing it on a rock, then leaping with a single bound to get in the picture with us. (That did not help my heart one bit!)

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The Potomac River with West Virginia to the left and Maryland to the right.

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The Shenandoah River with Virginia to the left and West Virginia to the right...while I'm standing in Maryland.

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The Potomac River merges with the Shenandoah River here. Virginia is on the left. Harper's Ferry, West Virginia has the town, straight ahead. I am in Maryland. We walked over from Harper's Ferry, via the left bridge, below. I think it's pretty cool that we can see all this and do all this in one area: two rivers and three states! And I love the mountains. Well, I love seeing them. I actually prefer hiking in the Rocky Mountains because the Appalachians are too rocky. There are always rocks and fallen trees to climb over, under, around, or through in the Appalachians. However the Rocky Mountain trails are smooth...much easier on my one balance nerve and I love climbing up , up, up, up to the snow covered peaks! Although I've yet to reach the top of one of those, I still hike higher altitudes there than can possibly be done here.

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A view from Maryland looking into West Virginia...

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On the Maryland side looking at the Potomac...

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The Potomac from the Maryland side...

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Back to the West Virginia side, looking at Maryland...

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Looking down the Potomac. I'm standing in West Virginia where the Shenandoah flows into the Potomac. I really think this is so cool!!!

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On the West Virginia side, looking at the old canal that parallels the Shenandoah River. I blogged more about this here, from 2010. I love canals!

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In Harper's Ferry we always stop for ice cream. Since it's not Blue Bell, I always ask for a float. 😊

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After the refreshment, we went to the train station. The guys are totally into trains and us gals are okay with that.

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We were told that Amtrak would arrive in any minute.

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I've never been this close to Amtrak before. I got quite the education. It was fascinating how huge they were and what all they carried. Some travelers had their bikes ready to load. I had no idea one could do that! The sitting area was phenomenal. I wish I had gotten a picture of that. A few weeks later we saw an episode of Murder She Wrote called, South by Southwest. It was one of my favorites...and featured an Amtrak train...of course! (Play on Cary Grant's North by Northwest...with a train.)

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Then a climb up to the town...

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And finally on the way home again...

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We enjoyed Texas eats...in Virginia!

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Yes, this was a good day!

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