Sunday, May 25, 2014

US Hwy 70: Wichita Falls, TX

First on the exploration docket for Wichita Falls was to check out the eponymous falls.

You can see them from the highway, but to get close requires a very nice walk in Lucy Park, a large municipal green space.

I was intrigued to learn that they are actually a man-made water feature, using water that is recirculated by a large electric pump.

The original falls were washed away more than 100 years ago, rebuilt as seen in 1987.

To commemorate the event, the Mayor of Niagara Falls, NY, poured water from his city's falls over a rock that was transported from those larger falls.

There's even a plaque that chronicles the ceremony, bolted onto the 2,500 pound rock.

As always, you can't really know what's going on someplace until you take a closer look!

Next on the list was the Museum of North Texas History, a substantial and very well curated facility that sprawls through numerous rooms, nooks and crannies in a large downtown building.

As advertised, there is a lot on display regarding North Texas History. A large-scale model of an oil rig with accompanying documentary video explains a lot about the process of oil drilling, and an immense collection of cowboy hats that belonged to various local folks is quite remarkable.

There are also many displays not directly related to North Texas, my favorite of which is an extensive collection of naval models, hand-made by a local resident. The degree of detail is as impressive as the breadth of historical representation, everything from early dreadnoughts to modern vessels.

Driving around town, I also found a small farmer's market and a semi-developed train depot attraction. Besides that there doesn't appear to be much available.

One gets the feeling that the nearby Air Force base is what keeps the area going. That and the ubiquitous presence of pasture, wheat and oil well pumps of various shapes and sizes.

I'm going to take the rest of the day off and push west tomorrow... Stay tuned!

Click here to see exactly where I am posting this from on Google Maps.

1 comment:

Mom said...

Donkeys in the fields are reminiscent of Baku... Making the backyard pay a return!