The Leaf Peeper Ramble travel blog

American and Horseshoe Falls on Niagara River from Rainbow Bridge

Goat Island Niagara Falls Park

American Falls is to the left. This one is Bridal Falls.

Jim in his poncho - for all the good it did!

The highest section is Hurricane Platform

Jim standing before Bridal Veil Falls

Wow!

Lovely rainbow

We were down there!

It's really wet down there!

The power of the water is amazing

The Maid of the Mist looks so small

Top side of American Falls

That's a lot of water

A new one for us - a kazoo factory

No factory is complete without a gift shop

A very repetitious job

Over 100 years old

One can make one's own kazoo

Sandi made a kazoo!


Syracuse, NY Yesterday we explored the Canadian side of Niagara Falls so today we did the American side. The Cave of the Winds trip takes you right up (and into) the waters of Niagara Falls. You ride an elevator 175’ deep into the Niagara Gorge. Then, clad in a bright yellow poncho and wearing the special sandals provided (you put your shoes in a plastic bag and carry them with you), you walk over a series of wooden walkways to the "Hurricane Deck". As you stand at the railing, you are a mere 20’ from the billowing torrents of Bridal Veil Falls. The waters loom above you, dousing you thoroughly. It feels like you must be standing in a hurricane. Picture taking is impossible. Actually, seeing clearly is impossible. We loved it! Rainbows are usually visible day and night. After getting completely drenched, we made our way back to the top where we wandered the park taking pictures and drying off. The falls look quite different from the top compared to standing in them. Our other major adventure for the day was a real first for us. The kazoo was invented by an American named Alabama Vest and made to his specifications by a German clock master named Thaddeus Von Clegg back in the 1840's. The Original American Kazoo Company in Eden, NY, is now the only metal kazoo factory in North America. This working museum continues to manufacture a complete line of kazoos. The machines that make the kazoos are the same die presses that were installed in 1907 when the building housed a sheet metal workshop. Today, as in the past, over 20 machines are run with one 10 horsepower motor connected with overhead jack shafts and leather belts. There are 18 separate steps to making a kazoo. Visitors have the opportunity to make their own and Sandi did exactly that! We will use it as a unique Christmas ornament since, although we tried heartily, neither of us have a talent for playing the thing!

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