Sunday, July 22, 2012

Kayak Tour of grain elevators on Buffalo River

We did the Paths, Peaks and Paddles kayak tour on a Monday evening in July on the Buffalo River.
Life jackets--check.  Ready to kayak.
This was a three hour tour of the Buffalo River, that fortunately did not involve us getting stranded on a desert isle with the Professor and Maryann!

They provided a tandem kayak for us, as we had reserved earlier in the day, life jackets, help getting into and out of the kayak and an informative tour all for $30 each.

Buffalo: home of Cheerio goodness since 1941

We learned why Buffalo smells like Cheerios. As we paddled past the General Mills grain silo, we suddenly smelled what I described as a warm Cheerio donut smell, if you can imagine that!
This is why Buffalo smells like Cheerios

This explains all the Buffalonians I see wearing T-shirts that say things like, "My city smells like Cheerios."  It's all making sense now.

General Mills grain silo

Clinton Brown was our historian for the guided tour.  He narrated our kayak tour on the architecture and the social and industrial history of Buffalo Creek and Buffalo River as we paddled along dwarfed by these enormous grain silos, many of them empty, rusted and forgotten.

Clint's narrative was informative and entertaining.  He has an optimistic view of Buffalo's future that is tempered by a respect of the city's gloried past and its more recent decades of decline.  Clint is an architect who supports and participates in historical and architectural restorations in Buffalo.

The kayak tour was a blast!  We were virgin kayak-ers and I was nervous at first about getting in and out of the kayak at the dock, but they assisted us and we stayed out of the drink.  My arms were a bit tired at the end of the evening.  And I was a bit glad to see the dock as dusk closed in.  But we enjoyed the evening on the river and we learned a lot. 

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