Unlike our majestic western national parks, the Cuyahoga Valley National Park is more urban, stretching from Akron to Cleveland. It is skinny, as it
follows the valley. Huge overpasses for I-271 and major roads span the
valley. As destructive as they are to the park’s aesthetics (and probably to its ecology with winter salt run-off, though the overpasses might be sanding only zones) I took an interesting photo underneath the I-271 overpass.
The Boston Visitor Center (BVC) is centrally located in the park next to the Ohio Canal; here you can get information, park maps,
and, of course, buy books and souvenirs. The BVC was originally a supply store and depot for barges plying the canal. Unlike the Erie, this canal was never widened or maintained. It is now mostly over-grown and impassable.
Next to the BVC is a small gas station and garage of the 1940s era. It is not open for business and you cannot go inside; it too, made a good photo.
Then there are the park administration buildings–all completely refurbished (without any vinyl siding). I’m told these were houses originally sold by Sears & Roebuck to workers in one of the local manufacturing plants.
Today, each building has administrative offices for safety, personnel, purchasing, and so forth.
Then there is the rail line running the entire park, with
stations at Rockside, Canal Exploration Center, Station Road, BVC, and Peninsula Depot. During the warmer months visitors can buy a pass and get the scenic tour.
My next post will explore the park’s waterfalls in greater detail than my first post.