I went on The Maid of the Mist when I went to America in the 1990s with my friend Alistar Parry. We flew to New York, hired a car & drove through the state of New York to the Canadian & American border where we stayed on the American side of Niagra Falls.
Maid of the Mist trip.
We stayed for a couple of days in Niagra. We joined an interesting tour of the area which took us to a hydroelectric plant, pointed out lots of interesting facts about the area & took us across to the Canadian side for a few hours. I don't know what it is like now but when I visited the Canadian side, it was very disappointing. The view of Horseshoe Falls was of course fantastic but the population area was just like pleasure beaches all over the world, with so many junk funfair shows, attractions & candy floss stalls, it was very disappointing.
Location of Horseshoe Falls at Niagra Falls.:
On the second day, we joined a boat trip which went very close to the cascading water of Niagra Falls. Although we were covered from head to foot in large blue coveralls we got absolutely soaked as the mist rained down on us as we approached as close to the falls as the boats are allowed to go. The falls seen from above are beautiful but seen from underneath they are incredible, the noise of the water is deafening & we found it hard to hear each other talking as we approached the falls.
After we had done the trip on our boat, The Maid of The Mist, I think all of the boats have this name painted on the side, we then went down inside the cliff face in a lift to visit the Cave of the Winds. The lift stops at the bottom of Niagra Falls & we got to walk under the falls on wooden platforms, if we weren't already wet we soon were.
That evening we crossed the border again to the Canadian side & went for dinner in the Skylon Tower before going up to the viewing platform to watch the nighttime laser show across the falls. It was a pretty fantastic view but after the show finished we returned to the American side of the falls again to get some sleep before driving to Boston in the morning.
Niagra Falls Facts.
The amount of water going over the falls is in fact governed these days. Because it produces much of the electricity for the surrounding areas the falls are regulated. Between 50-75% of the water that flows along the Niagara River is diverted from going over the Falls to hydroelectric power generating stations.
The flow of water over the falls is reduced at night so that more flows through the hydroelectric power stations, this allows more water to flow over the cliffs when people are visiting Niagra Falls during the day.
During periods of peak flow, more than 700,000 gallons of water per second pour over Niagara Falls.
3,160 tons of water flow over Niagara Falls every second.
Despite myths to the contrary, Niagara Falls does not freeze in the winter.
The first person to go over the Niagara Falls in a barrel was 63-year-old school teacher Annie Edson Taylor. She is buried at Oakwood Cemetery in Niagara Falls in an area called Stunters Rest, along with other Niagara Falls daredevils.
Niagara Falls' current erosion rate is approximately 1 foot per year and could possibly be reduced to 1 foot per 10 years due to flow control and diversion for hydropower generation.
Niagara Falls is comprised of three waterfalls, from largest to smallest, the Horseshoe Falls (also known as the Canadian Falls), American Falls and Bridal Veil Falls.