Not to mention interesting…and add another first to the list. Being on the downstream side of a dam during the opening of spillways due to flooding.
After driving over the Conowingo Hydroelectric Dam on the Susquehanna “westbound”, I followed some back roads to the visitor’s park just downstream from the dam itself. I’ve driven US-1 over the dam (very narrow 2-lane public road on the breast of the dam) a number of times, but just found out about the park a couple weeks before the trip. It has a fabulous view of the facility and the spillways (and for anyone driving a Tesla, charging stations for them!)
When I arrived on the property, first thing I noticed was a sign warning that vultures may damage cars…I saw a bunch of those critters, but they didn’t damage anyone’s car that I know of. There sure were a lot of them, though…likely preying on dead fish, resulting from their trip over the spillways. No need for vultures to strip the vinyl off convertible tops with the smorgasbord in the river…
Once I found a suitable parking spot and got out of the car, I heard sirens going off…you don't hear much with the windows up and the AC running. Signs everywhere revealed the meaning of this: more spillways were being opened to lower the level of the river behind the dam, due to recent heavy rains. We were not required to evacuate, as it was only going to raise the water level below the dam a little bit. But this was definitely another first: being on the downstream side of a dam as spillways were being opened.
As you can see, a bunch of walkways were closed (below), with water already over them.
I walked as close as I could get to the dam, then headed back for my car - a fairly good hike. Two ladies (not together, and at different times on my way back to the car), stopped me to talk about it. (They must have seen me get out of it.) "You have a beautiful car, Ma'am." And each one talked with me for a few minutes. Mandy was certainly lovin' it!
After getting back in the car and re-crossing the dam going east, my task was to hunt for a suitable cornfield to do a quick change back into white shorts, and out of my skirt. No problem. A lot of high corn in southern PA, so it didn't take long. Done sadly, of course...
And a couple hours later, I was back home again...putting the car away after another wonderful trip.And now I'm awaiting the chance to do it again!
Till next time,