This morning, my brother and I woke up early and made the drive out to the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historic Park. The day was supposed to peak at 93 degrees, but at 7:30 in the morning, the sun was low, the shadows long and cool, and the air less than 80. It’s difficult to beat that peculiar but lovely clarity of morning light.
We arrived too early to experience the historical park, which we had seen some years earlier, but we wanted to beat the day’s heat and hike. The park has a long dirt towpath that runs a few miles but has several places to depart for more rugged terrain along the way, the first being to Olmsted Island, the Maryland side of the Great Falls of the Potomac River.