Papa’s World – Walking the Billy Goat Trail – Great Falls

On Sunday after church service and adult education –

Sherry said

” Lets do something ” !

She had told me to wear my walking sneakers –

She said we can go to one of three places –

Georgetown – some where in D.C.

or Great Falls !

Sherry & Tom at Great Falls

Now – 18 or 19 years ago –

we went there – and have not been back since –

So – I said – how far do I have to drive

and she looked it up –

six miles – DONE –

I do not want to drive into Georgetown or DC !

Great Falls

I had forgotten just how beautiful this place is !

A man in a Kayak trying to go up the rapids

You actually can pay and go down the river in huge rubber tubes –

There were people getting ready to do this but we missed them.

The Billy Goat trail

Somehow as we were climbing up and over and trough the rocks

on The Billy Goat Trail –

They had put in and gone on their way !

We did however see one lone Kayak trying to go up the rapids !

There were several places along the trail

That people were going to rope down !

Flood stages over the years

It is really hard to believe that where she is standing –

FLOOD WATERS !

A lot of these dates correspond to major storms and ice and snow melt !

Mather’s Gorge

The Billy Goat Trail is full of rocks and boulders such as you see here.

I found myself gingerly placing my feet down in order not to slip.

It was dry and very hot out – 95 degrees –

I do not think I would walk this after a good rain.

Being it would be extremely slippery !

Below is where they put the tubes in

Most of this trail stayed away from the gorge edge –

but had little side trails that you could walk out to see over –

often times you actually could stand on rocks – NOT ME !

One of three overlooks

There were Three major over looks that had walls waist high –

Those I did – and were quite safe !

There were volunteers constantly walking the trail and overlooks –

making sure everyone obeyed the park rules !

I was surprised that they actually let people repel over the sides

and climb back up again !

I do not know if you have to have a permit to do that ?

I did read where you had to check in and register !

Old growth trees along side the canal

In 1784 – a series of five canals were constructed

and are still there

The main path follows along right where the footpath was

George Washington presided over the effort to construct the canal

and after completion in 1802 –

it operated for 26 years .

Old growth trees along side the old canal

It would take three days to travel the old canal from Cumberland Md.

To Georgetown – a distance of 190 miles –

the boats were flat –

pointed at both ends –

75 feet long and 5 feet wide !

After arriving at Georgetown

most of the boats were

sold for lumber

and the boatmen would then walk back home !

This area was a major trade center between the Indians and the colony.

View of the river

I was also surprised to see all the area to have picnics !

There were many tables and grills –

A host of families – and wide open spaces – shaded by the old trees !

A very nice visitors center and bathrooms –

along with a concession stand where you could buy Hot dogs

Pizza – other food and ice cream bars etc.

A deer eating 20 feet from us

I hope you liked our little side trip to GREAT FALLS PARK

On the Virginia side !

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Tom ( PAPA ) JIM & Buck

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Papas World – Cabin Fever- Walking the path!

The start of our self imposed
SOCIAL DISTANCING!

To let you know – I write and schedule these blogs ahead of time!

So – today we are now into our fourth day of SOCIAL DISTANCING!

And – we are doing okay – it has it effect more so on Sherry

than on me!

One of the ways to walk
on the paths that we have
close to us
over 15 miles of different
paths that we have!

Sherry is the one who moves the most

the one who inspires me to move!

So – we decided that we could and would walk

and still keep our distance from other people!

The paths are wide –

enough so that you can pass and stay at least

eight feet away or more!

Once we leave the street
we begin our walk through
the trees – bush and grass areas!

This path was almost three miles long

and had we not taken a short cut –

it would of been over three miles!

When leaves are out
this becomes very shaded
and cooler in the hot summer!

Our walk takes us through many wooden areas

and toward the very large pond!

At this point we can choose
to walk the left side of the pond
or cross this bridge
and walk the right side
of the pond!

Both left or right go completely around the pond

and there are birds – turtles and fish to be seen.

In the distance was the only person
we saw that was walking
the same direction as us!

Here you can see a row of houses to the right –

and we are headed toward the new

over 55 community

that is still being built!

In the far left distance
is a section of over 55 community
The community gets closer
this is but a small part
and I would say they are a good
two or more years
before they are built out!
To the right are the townhouses
four stories with elevators!
And directly ahead
the huge community center!
The over 55 community center
with both indoor and outdoor pools!
Looking back from the direction
from the way we had come
and the housing on the left side of the pond path!
These are all new
saw several of these owls
I suppose to keep the geese at bay!

The pond is up – although we have not had hard rains

but slow gentle ones!

I noticed these owls which before December

were not here!

Past the new what I call Brownstones!

We decided instead of continuing on the pond path

To walk the sidewalk past the over 55 Brownstones!

Notice no traffic
on the highway!
This is a four lane road
with 40 MPH or faster
and always full of traffic
so much that we sometimes wait five minutes
to see traffic decrease
so we can cross!

I hope this shows just how a walk

can break that time spent inside during this time!

One more block and turn right

Thanks for reading Papa’s World

WHERE FRIENDS MEET THE FAMILY!

Home sweet home

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