A week in New York: Letchworth State Park
A week in Upstate New York visiting family and exploring the beautiful countryside and the finger lakes region. We visited a few state parks, including Letchworth State Park, which has been coined as “The Grand Canyon of the East.” The falls are part of the Genesee River, which has been controlled by the Mt. Morris Dam (completed in 1954) due to area flooding.
The canyons are beautiful, filled with shadows, colors, textures, light, and sound.
There are three major waterfalls in the park; the Upper, Middle, and Lower Falls. The Seneca called the land around this canyon “Seh-ga-hun-da”, the “Vale of the three falls”; the Middle Falls (“Ska-ga-dee”) was believed to be so wondrous it made the sun stop at midday. (wikipedia)
It’s pretty amazing to read about the history of the Seneca people (and the Iroquois people as a whole) and their practices. They were considered the “keepers of the Western Door” which, when you think about it, is a really huge role to take on, as well as a very respectable role.
I didn’t see or experience a whole lot of indigenous influence in the area, besides the naming of things. I did however get to hear some really neat stories from Sylvan’s Grampa about some of his artifact findings in his own backyard. It amazes me to think that there are still thousands of useful and worn hand-made tools, ceremonial tools, and artifacts throughout this land. To think about how the people worked the land, respected the land, honored the land and its gifts — it is something I am so far from, yet feel so emotional about. I experience the feeling in Oregon and Washington, and experienced the same thing in Utah, visiting the desert. It is such an overwhelming feeling to think about the sacredness of the land and what it holds, what was there and still resides there.
This grasshopper stopped ever so sweetly and let me get oh-so-close to snap some shots of its awesome, intricate body. So many lines, colors, textures….I love it!