Monday, August 16, 2010

Ironton Rail-trail walk

Two of the things that made this area a happening spot for immigrants at the turn of the last century were the iron and cement industries, both of which were huge from the 1870's until relatively recently (and some small remnants are still doing there thing), and the towns around here owe their very existence to these businesses. Both industries were served by a series of train-tracks (and trains) that wound around the surrounding area but have been abandoned for scores of years. Now these tracks have been made into a many-miles long walking/biking path that is kept up by volunteers (although I believe the original deal-e-o was put together by the 'governments' of the Whitehall area, so at some point someone was forced to pay for it which is lame, but the gov. is always lame by definition) and the other night Emily and I walked a good 4 miles of it from Hokey (the name people call Hokendauqua) up to Coplay, where the first cement kilns in the US were built and still stand, as you will see in the upcoming photos. Also, you can watch the cats torture a cicada and see some old buildings at the Allentown fairgrounds.
Oh of the best things around here are the lightening bugs (fireflys) that blink on every night at dusk, and the crickets and cicadas chirping and buzzing away. Somehow none of those sights or sounds seem to have made it over the mountains to Portland, and I damn that town for that very reason.
Anyway, check out the pics...

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