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The two RV Gypsies
at Cuyahoga Valley National Park
and Brandywine Falls
September 15, 2013
map of Ohio showing location of Cuyahoga Valley National ParkCuyajpga Va;lley National Park sign

Cuyahoga Valley National Park is a United States National Park that preserves and reclaims the rural landscape along the Cuyahoga River between Akron and Cleveland in Northeast Ohio.

The 20,339.22-acre (31.78 square miles) park, which is administered by the National Park Service, is the ONLY national park in Ohio.

Cuyahoga means "crooked river" in Mohawk, which is part of the Iroquoian language family. The multi-purpose Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath trail was developed by the National Park Service and is the major trail through Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

History The valley began providing recreation for urban dwellers in the 1870s when people came from nearby cities for carriage rides or leisure boat trips along the canal. In 1880, the Valley Railroad became another way to escape urban industrial life. Actual park development began in the 1910s and 1920s with the establishment of Cleveland and Akron metropolitan park districts. In 1929 the estate of Cleveland businessman Hayward Kendall donated 430 acres around the Richie Ledges and a trust fund to the state of Ohio. Kendall's will stipulated that the "property should be perpetually used for park purposes". It became Virginia Kendall park, in honor of his mother. In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps built much of the park's infrastructure.

Although regional parks safeguarded certain places, by the 1960s local citizens feared that urban sprawl would overwhelm the Cuyahoga Valley's natural beauty. Active citizens joined forces with state and national government staff to find a long-term solution. Finally, on December 27, 1974, President Gerald Ford signed the bill establishing the Cuyahoga Valley National Recreation Area. The area was redesignated a National Park by Congress on October 11, 2000.

Above quote from the internet source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Brandywine Falls is among the most popular attractions in Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

Brandywine Falls sign

The two RV Gypsies walked down some stairs to a long slanted ramp and past some interesting cliffs to reach Brandywine Falls.

the ramp to Brandywine Falls
rocks at the bottom of Brandywine Falls

History Geological and Natural History: Carved by Brandywine Creek, the 65-foot falls demonstrates classic geological features of waterfalls. A layer of hard rock caps the waterfall, protecting softer layers of rock below. In this case, the top layer is Berea Sandstone. The softer layers include Bedford and Cleveland shales, soft rocks formed from mud found on the sea floor that covered this area 350-400 million years ago. Shale is thinly chunked, giving water a bridal veil appearance as it cascades down the falls.

A combination of boardwalk and steps brings you into the waterfall's gorge and lets you view the waterfall head-on (a boardwalk option without stairs is also available). The boardwalk also provides a close look at Berea Sandstone. Careful inspection will reveal the individual grains of sand that accumulated in a sea 320 million years ago. Berea Sandstone is high quality sandstone found commonly throughout this area, both in nature and as a construction material used in buildings and canal locks. The moistness of the gorge is evident as you walk along boardwalk. The moisture invites moss to grow on the sandstone and eastern hemlocks, an evergreen tree, to grow along the gorge. The hemlocks contrast with the abundant red maple trees in the area, which flame with color in the fall.

Above quote from the internet source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Brandywine Falls at Cuyahoga Valley National Park
sign about Brandywine Falls  with the falls in the background
sign abot Brandywine Falls

The two RV Gypsies walked past interesting cliffs, and then back up the stairs to the boardwalk, so they could view Brandywine Falls from the top of the falls.

a cliff at Brandywine Falls
Lee Duquette going back up the stair

Looking down at the rocks at the bottom of Brandywine Falls from the boardwalk at the top of the falls.

the rocks at the bottom of Brandywine Falls

View from the top of Brandywine Falls

View from the top of Brandywine Falls
View from the top of Brandywine Falls

Hiking the Trail
The 1.5-mile trail lets visitors explore beyond the waterfall. It starts near the bed and breakfast and follows the edge of the gorge, eventually going down to creek level. The trail is worth revisiting in the spring to view vernal pools that temporarily fill with water, attracting breeding salamanders. The views of the creek and the layers of rock it has exposed are also worth the walk. The two RV Gypsies did not hike the entire trail.

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