While working out of Toronto for 6 months an easy and obvious side trip was the iconic Niagara Falls.
Allison and myself plus Toronto co-conspirators, Cathy and Marty, get a bus down to Niagara Falls for the weekend. Hit a bit of traffic so we don’t arrive till 8pm. We are booked in at the Niagara HI hostel. A 4 bed dorm room with two bunks for us 4. Perfect
We are a little walk from the falls. But still head to the falls for the fireworks show. Perhaps they should consider the effectiveness of fireworks when there is a tonne of mist shooting up from the falls as apart from mist and smoke there was not much ooh’ing and ahh’ing and the fire bit of the works. So we call it a night.
We have breakfast at a traditional American diner called Dad’s diner. Pretty greasy but good hearty breakfast. Head back to the main attraction and take the obligatory Maid of the Mist tour. The boat which drives up under the falls well into the mist before being shot back out by the torrents of water pushing the boat back downstream. A pretty well run operation and thankful for the free ponchos!
Getting our full fix of falls content we see the IMAX movie which is pretty good. Highlighting some history and also the crazy people who have gone over the falls either intentionally or by accident. Some having survived, some sadly not.
Clifton Hill slopes up from the valley and for anyone who has been, it is quite tacky. Especially when positioned next to one of the natural wonders of the world. Casinos, amusement parlours and tacky souvenir stalls. It did however allow us to tick one of Marty’s collectables, a Hard Rock Cafe pint glass. We also managed to convince the girls to go to Tony Romas steakhouse before the long walk back to the hostel.
Next morning we head downstream from the falls following the deep canyon the rushing water has gorged out of the earth. Arriving at the whirlpool rapids. Now Niagara falls is formed from Lake Erie to the west emptying into Lake Ontario to the east. The sudden difference in height put down to some seismic shift some millions of years ago. So the water flows into Lake Ontario which eventually flows into the St Lawrence river which runs east to the Atlantic via Quebec.
We catch the bus back to Toronto after our second successive weekend away. To give Cath and Marty a break from having us squat in their living room, Allison and I spend the week at our friend Jen’s condo down on Lake Ontario, the complete opposite side to Niagara Falls. Lake Ontario being so big you cannot see the other side.