Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Rochester Falls

I was driving down Hwy 169 in NW Missouri last weekend on my way to visit Les & Susan in Overland Park, KS and Donna in Kansas City, MO when I spotted a sign just outside the little town of Rochester, MO which read "Rochester Falls Conservation Area - Public Access". Any time I'm traveling and see the word Falls, my interest is piqued. I made a mental note to check this out if I returned home via the same route.
Sunday afternoon was a gorgeous fall day. The drive down along 169 had been scenic so I decided to go home the same way. When I got to the Rochester Falls sign, I pulled in. First I passed some camping sites then around the curve was a turn around. I parked, walked over to the edge and saw a flight of stairs down to the river. At the bottom was an interesting shelf of limestone and the above "falls". O.K., so I didn't really expect falls, falls in Missouri, but where else but the Midwest would these be called falls? Interestingly this river, the Platte, is the same river which begins about a half mile from our house in Creston.
I thought there could be a waterfall in Rochester, MN as the Zumbro River flows right through the town named after Rochester, NY and famous for the Mayo Clinic. And even though there is a town named Zumbro Falls upriver from Rochester, MN, I couldn't find any falls in either location.
This picture of the Rochester Falls in Rochester, NY, looks more like falls should look.
They are located in the High Falls Historic District also known as Brown's Race Neighborhood. Brown's Race was the name given to the channel built to divert water from the Genesee River to power the early mills and factories. One of the old mills is a visitor center and museum documenting the area's past. If there is time when we visit Niagara Falls, maybe I'll get to see these Rochester Falls.
(Side note here: There is a small creek named Niagara which flows into the Platte River near the Rochester Falls in Missouri.)
The Rochester Falls I'll probably never see are these located on the Savanne River on the island of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. Mauritius, once a British Colony, is a small, independent, island east of Madagascar, off the southeast coast of Africa. The island can only be described as a paradise and has long been a dream destination. Well, I can dream. Add these falls to the list of Rochester Falls I hope to one day visit.

1 comment:

  1. You should have seen these falls in the seventies! They were spetacular. My parents used to take us kids there with our cousins on hot summer days. I am not sure what happened to these falls. I suppose silt from the crop fields filled them in over time. They were at least 6 feet tall in their glory days! Thank for the memories! Chris Bauman-Largo Florida