Thursday, July 28, 2011

Exploring Chedoke Creek & Falls

Last night I went on a hike and discovered the most amazing place - Chedoke Creek and Falls.  Beyond the breathtaking beauty of red clay cliffs, limestone boulders, and multiple waterfalls, the thing that makes this place utterly spectacular is its location - just steps from Hamilton's downtown.

Despite its proximity to the heart of the city, it's not the easiest place to access.  There's a side trail off of the Chedoke Radial Trail, just east of Chedoke Golf Course.  The trail only gets you so far, after that its a tricky hike along steep embankments and a rocky creek bed.  After a very dry summer, the water was very very low, so it made travelling along the creek bed a bit easier and a lot drier.

I brought my trusty tripod along and had lots of fun taking some long exposure shots of the water, giving it a silky smooth appearance.  Here are a few of my favourite shots:

The eroded clay banks and massive limestone boulders must mean this creek becomes a pretty powerful river in the rain-filled spring.
It's pretty neat to think that the bricks of our house are made from that very same red clay.  These next few shots are of Lower Chedoke Falls.

After quite a bit of rain today, I have to wonder whether those teetering limestone boulders at the brink of the falls have fallen yet.  The trek from here to Chedoke Falls was pretty challenging...but the view was more than worth it:
The rains of spring had caused a landslide on the one bank - it's hard to tell from the picture, but I'm actually standing on the root ball of a massive tree that had fallen near the base of the falls (you can just catch a glimpse of it in the bottom left of the photo).  The signs of transformation make me excited to go back here again and again to see how the falls and creek change over time.

The beauty and diversity of Hamilton's landscape continues to blow me away.  Man oh man, I love this city!


Anonymous said...

Your pictures are amazing! You really caught the beauty of some of the many waterfalls. (I'm a Hamiltonian.) Gorgeous.

citify said...

Thanks - glad you like them!

Exploriment said...

Did you go all the way back? If not, it really is worth the trek. Really cool that this is within the confines of one of the biggest cities in Canada. Easy to forget when you’re in the gorge.

citify said...

Yup - it was quite a long trek, but definitely worth it. That last picture is taken from the southern most part of the gorge. Crazy how close it is to downtown and how much it feels like the middle of nowhere!