Meet America's Newest National Park
Hiking has always been an activity that I really enjoy doing. Reconnecting with nature, time by...
Hiking has always been an activity that I really enjoy doing. Reconnecting with nature, time by yourself, and just being able to breathe in fresh air lets me keep my sanity. So, I was extremely excited to hear about America’s newest national park – Great Falls in Paterson, New Jersey.
Great Falls is definitely an interesting park – it used to be the largest (118-acres) industrial site. It’s a great example of 18th, 19th, and 20th-century water powered systems. Oh, and did I mention it’s home to a 77-foot tall waterfall? That waterfall wasn’t just for show – it was the first try at developing waterpower. The falls were the main source that geared up our nation’s factories that made silk, trains, and firearms – and the old industrial site was a key factor for the American Industrial Revolution.
President Barack Obama signed a national park designation for Great Falls in 2009, making it a contender for federal funds. Engineers, historians, artists, and Rutgers University envision a different look for the old industrial site – one that is more like a living room. Some of the plans include up to 6 hiking paths of various hiking levels, and overlook terrace and balcony of the falls, and an overlook plaza and balcony to rent out for restaurants, parties, and instructional areas.
Although this park is still in its infancy it’s one to keep on your radar and plan a trip there soon. It may not be completed, but exploring the before and after of our newest national park would be a true hiker’s delight.
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