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Just Call Me a Dam Fool...

...or a frustrated engineer. If it involves water, power, and construction, I'm a happy woman. Despite a paralyzing fear of both water and heights, I love to spend my time poking about and contemplating the minds involved in the creation of something so amazing.





Among them the Croton Dam, or more officially, the Croton Hydroelectric Plant. First opened in 1907 and still in use today. Looking for an oh so romantic evening? Swing by the dam after dark and spend some time out on the Muskegon River under the lights. The view, especially in the winter, shouldn't be missed.



Next on our trip was a stop at both the Hardy Dam and the Rogers Dam. The Hardy Dam has an amazing resevoir, which according to Wikipedia offers excellent fishing and a nature trail system regarded as one of the best. The three mile unpaved path parallels the Muskegon River and contains 26 different trees with identification plaques. The trail area is home to wild turkeys, grouse and bald eagles as well as beaver, mink and otter. Fishing includes salmon, steel head, rainbow trout, brown trout, walleye, bass, perch and other pan fish. Have spent many happy hiking hours there we definitely agree.



Of course, no trip to favorite spots would be complete without a stop at the Ludington Pumped Storage Power Plant. I love this photo we took of the resevoir, it looks so fake.







A true test of your lungs is the hike from the turbines shown below, to the top of the resevoir.

Unfortunately, in our post 9/11 world much of the freedom to get up close and personal with these amazing sites has been reduced to a few tours when and if, available. We count ourselves lucky we were able to spend hands-on time and get to know several of the wonderful employees at these facilities pre 9/11. They encouraged our interest and answered our endless questions during many visits over the years.






photos copyright Chrissy Munder

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
egret17
Apr. 3rd, 2012 10:48 pm (UTC)
I didn't realize that about dams post 9/11...
chrissymunder
Apr. 3rd, 2012 11:52 pm (UTC)
It's sad but true. Because they produce electricity and are a vital part of the infrastructure they could be considered targets to those with bad intentions. Even if it didn't produce electricity, the destruction of the Croton Dam would submerge several small towns.

We've noticed a real tightening of security and available information. Some of the websites have changed. The Ludington site has removed maps of the grounds and the trail routes with access points, and our last visit we couldn't climb up to the observation platform of the resevoir where we took that picture.
clarelondon
Apr. 4th, 2012 12:14 pm (UTC)
These are magnificent photos, at first I thought you'd pulled them off the net! Such striking structures, very imposing, and so critical. Hubby loves this kind of trip, too.
chrissymunder
Apr. 5th, 2012 12:39 pm (UTC)
Awh, thanks. The one of the resevoir has always been a favorite. Something about the colors.... One day I'll have it turned into a poster.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )