I’m all about spur of the moment, let’s make a memory decisions. But my memories don’t always turn out the way I plan them too. I babysit these two little boys and they like adventure. Which means, I need to be adventurous for them. I thought I would surprise them with a trip to Albion Falls in Hamilton. Go see a waterfall, walk the trail; they’ll love it. Little did I know how hard it would be to find this waterfall.
Why Would I Trust a Mapping System?
Off we went, on a super awesome excursion. Best babysitter in the world award goes to me. I thought I was doing really well, but we may have been a little lost. I don’t know how many of you have actually been to Albion Falls, but this was my first time. Fun fact: there is no hike to get to this attraction. But, don’t you worry; we went on one anyways, completely by accident. We hopped out of the car, looked at our surroundings, and thought no way is there a waterfall on the other side of the street. It must be down this path. The trail quickly turned into a paved pathway. I thought nothing of it, other than; this waterfall must be a happening place to have a paved path instead of the usual gravel. Not that I was complaining.
So there we went, hiking up a hill for 20 minutes. The boys didn’t even complain, they were too excited to see the waterfall. Our path came to an end at a playground with a basketball court. Again, kind of strange. I told the boys the waterfall was just around the bend and Google mapped where we were. Google maps said we were further from the waterfall than when we got out of the car. What the actual heck? I don’t understand. I thought I was totally in control. I thought I had a good sense of direction, but apparently not.
So we kept walking. Walked down a path behind people’s houses, on the sidewalk through a neighbourhood, and ended up in another parking lot not too far from ours. Part of me wanted to give up, but I promised these little guys a waterfall. And you can bet we were going to find a waterfall. In this parking lot there was a crowd of people, so I used my common sense and thought, “let’s just follow the crowd”. I know I’m a genius; you don’t need to make a big deal out of it.
Google Knows Best
Right Where Google Maps Said.
Sure enough we cross the parking lot with the crowd and there are the falls in all of their glory. There were all kinds of people climbing on the waterfall, but I didn’t know how to get there. There was no trailhead other than a narrow path that went around the barrier and down a cliff. One of the boys wanted to climb down the cliff but I vetoed that plan real quick. As much fun as it sound to scale down to the waterfall, I didn’t think that was something I should do with a 5 and 7 year old.
Turns out, there is a stairwell to get to the bottom of the waterfall. And where is this stairwell you may ask. It is right across the road from where we parked. You remember the road I thought couldn’t possibly be the right way? Yup. That road. Part of me was glad to see a stairwell that would be easy for the boys and me to climb down. But my inner adventurer wanted a little more of a challenge.
Be Careful What You Ask For
Ask and You Shall Receive.
I asked for more adventure, and that’s exactly what I got. The stairwell doesn’t actually go all the way to the bottom of waterfall. It, maybe, goes one quarter of the way down. The rest is mud and rocks. I felt like a parkour expert. Just a little less jumping across buildings and more hop down a small ledge and catch a child. The boys weren’t quite as experienced as I was. *Hair Flip* But I helped them out.
One of the boys is kind of like me. He is a little ambitious. But, who am I to crush his dreams. You want to climb the waterfall like all the teenagers? Sure, no problem. Let’s do it! Did I think about how a 5 and 7 year old’s legs are half of the size of a teenager’s? No. Did I consider how slippery the rocks are? Double no. But did we climb that waterfall? Of course we did. To put you out of suspense, the boys were fine. It was me you needed to worry about, but is that at all surprising? I didn’t think so.
Mind Your Step
The Twist in Events.
Climbing massive rocks to the middle of the waterfall was the easy part. I mean I lifted the boys and my legs were long enough to step up. There was a very small part of me that thought the water would be warm like on a beach in Mexico, but it really wasn’t. The water was cold, the rocks were slimy, and I was just pretending I was having fun for the sake of the boys. I really just wanted to get out. I think that is where I went wrong. And, maybe because I shouldn’t have been walking on the edge. But, the best babysitter in the world couldn’t just let the boys walk on the edge of a waterfall, I would lose my title. I quickly learned there is a reason people don’t walk on the edge of a waterfall.
We were walking along, minding our own business and BAM! Jordanne goes down. Chill. Don’t assume the worst! I didn’t go over the edge. I did however, twist my ankle and land fully in the water. The boys keeled over laughing, and I tried not to cry. With my ankle wedged between two rocks and my now soaking wet pants, I smiled at the boys as if I was totally fine and purposely fell to make them laugh.
I can lead the tour to this waterfall now.
Best Babysitter in the World Coming Through. This family excursion is easier than it appears and seems wildly adventurous for kids. So basically, it’s my ideal outing. I don’t know if I would let the boys walk though the waterfall again though.
- Waterfalls just might be in a place that you least expect, like across a road. Don’t think that you know better than Google Maps, you probably don’t.
- Be ready to tread through algae filled water. It’s an experience. Try not to be too grossed out. It could be worse, it could be too sharp to walk on or infested with creepy crawlies. To be honest, it probably was, but I’m going to pretend it wasn’t.
- If you’re bringing kids, keep in mind that their little legs might have some trouble climbing up and down the rocks. Be prepared to carry them.
You know that song about not chasing waterfalls? Go against it. Chase them and make a memory. Maybe just avoid walking on the edge of them though.
Have you ever found a waterfall where you would least expect it? Let me know where the next waterfall I should chase is located.
Stay adventurous my friends,
The Basically Adventurous Jordanne.