Okay, for those of you that have decided to be kind and bear with me, I thank you. I would hope that the advance warning will prevent any personal attacks or hate mail sent my way. Here we go! Are you still there?
Thirty eight years ago on this date I slipped a band of gold on the finger of my best friend and companion for life. I remember this day like it was yesterday because it happened to be the first day of fishing season and the creeks were perfect and loaded with brookies, brownies and rainbows. Instead of fishing vests and waders, my best man and I wore suits and no fishing hats. Instead of holding a fishing pole, I held the hand of the girl that would walk with me through adventures far more numerous than she had ever anticipated.
From that day on I think she became frighteningly aware of the true definition of spontaneity and unplanned adventures. I say that because after the wedding we took off on our honeymoon with zero plans and never having thought much about where we might go. This would become our mode of operation and continues to this day as we have proven time and time again that our best times are those with no advance plans, schedules or itineraries. So with no plans we headed down the highway and ended up in Orlando. Disney World was so much fun. Sure we spent one night sleeping in a 1970 Mustang in a Rest Area, but that's part of the adventure. To this day, it is common for us to head down the road and make our decisions at each crossroad. These trips have yet to disappoint!
So let's briefly look back at 1973. Richard Nixon was President, I think you remember Tricky Dicky. Life expectancy was 71.4 years. Hey now we are expected to live past 78 years. A gallon of milk was $1.30 and a dozen of eggs was 78 cents. You could lick a stamp that only cost 8 cents and send that letter across the country. Now they are shutting down Post Offices. Median income was a tad over $10K and a new home would set you back $35,000. I was making $3.10 per hour. I got the extra 10 cents because I was educated. hehe When we drove to Florida, a gallon of gas only cost us 39 cents. We also stayed at a real nice place called the Days Inn which at that time had a big (8) in the sunburst on the lighted sign because you could get a room for $8.00 a night and you could keep the paperback Bible from the room. Our dining on our honeymoon was at McDonalds and the Waffle House. We had a great time.
So now that you are bored and confused you may be wondering how the Buttermilk Falls fits into the equation. Well, allow me to clear the fog and explain that. Every year on our anniversary we do something special. One year it was hiking 11 miles on the steepest section of the Appalachian Trail to get to an awesome spot called Pinnacle Rock. Every year is an adventure and every year was memorable. This year we decided to visit a beautiful waterfalls just east of Parker Pa. So you probably wondering where the heck is Parker Pa. It's just south of Emlenton and then just south of Foxburg. I can tell you exactly how to get there. Just drive down the west side of the Allegheny River below Foxburg until you see a bridge that crosses the river. The bridge is blueish green and tilts upward at about 20 degrees. It's definitely an uphill bridge. Once you cross the bridge you need to hang a quick left turn on a dirt road and you'll see Old Glory waving on a nearby rock formation. It's a cool spot, by the way! Now you drive under the uphill bridge and then veer left again. Then you drive past there and pass the old rock quarry. After that you keep going and then turn right on a road that ends with "willinger" or something like that. Then you drive a couple miles along there until you see a big pipe spewing nice refreshing water out of a rock wall on your left. After that you watch for a barnyard with 10 chickens and one real happy rooster on your right.
Just beyond there you will see a road on your right that "Y's" off next to a plowed field. I think there was taters planted there! Turn there and just swerve to avoid the deeper mud holes. Continue on this road until all resemblance of a road seems to be diminishing. Look for two deer on the left, although they may have run off. You are getting close! As you approach the destination you will see a dead possum on your left which for now is making kind of a neat little pool of water in the ditch. Isn't nature amazing? At this point you will need to slip the vehicle into the offroad or 4 wheel drive mode. Also it's good to remind yourself that a few more scratches in the paint adds character. Navigate your way down into there and then you'll only have to walk or should I say climb a short ways. It will be worth it though. See how easy it was to get here.
Buttermilk Falls is an awesome waterfalls that drops maybe 30 feet in a roaring cascade. This particular day it was difficult to get a good picture due to the late afternoon sun illuminating the falls and making a balanced time exposure difficult. I did the best I could but nothing beats being there with the girl you married 38 years ago. By the way, we've been here several times and always enjoy it. The last time we were here we had just won 1st Place in the Tandem Kayak Division of the Allegheny/Clarion Valley Classic Kayak Race. Yup, the adventures continue!
This was taken just below Buttermilk Falls. Looks like it's washing away my signature!
Tom, Beautiful picture of the falls. I drive by every week and now have another excuse to stop by Foxburg!
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