Niagara

Seeing the Falls, it’s difficult to trust that they’re real. My mind tries to discount it, like something I’m seeing in a photograph, or on television. And this may be the benefit of the Canadian side: being able to take it in as one sweeping panorama, at a distance, more easily comprehensible. I walk from one set of falls to another, and from one end of a falls, crossing a bridge over the rapids, to the other end. And all the while, I can only take little bites of what they are visually. I almost think it is better to close my eyes as I walk around, because in hearing everywhere the constant rush and rumble, I feel the force of the waters, and the reality presents itself. Opening my eyes, the ground I’m walking on feels less secure, temporary. I get the sense that it could be swept along with the waters at any moment.

ps: Reading up on the Falls after returning to my hotel room, I learned that extensive engineering has taken place in the last century to secure the Falls in their current state. Lake Erie at its lowest point is higher than the Niagara River. It will ultimately spill over. (Feel free to offer further or counter insights, geoloist friends)

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2 Responses to “Niagara”

  1. Kelsey Says:

    The falls are only running at a portion of their strength as well- most of the water is diverted for hydro power. The falls themselves have been “turned off” many times to clear away rubble from the bottom of the falls, which was a result of natural erosion of the dolomite. The falls are there in the first place because the Niagara dolomite (like limestone) which is more resistant and overlies the Maquoketa shale, a really weak rock underneath. Through erosion, the shale wears away leaving an over hanging cliff of dolomite that the water spills over, which will invariably crash down over time, thus making the falls “move up river” from their present location. This of course would be a great problem for the local economy if the falls started moving around. Where else would we go to see two countries cheapening nature… oh wait…

    These falls are complete rubbish in terms of witnessing real geological processes. Damn humans.

  2. Steve Says:

    damn geologists

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