Yesterday I took the kids, plus Maddie and Amanda, to Harpers Ferry. We've never actually been there, so I wasn't exactly sure what we should do. We wanted to hike, and I found some shorter hikes on the website, so that seemed like a good plan.
When we got there, we went straight to the visitors center, where I talked to a nice ranger. He showed me some hikes, including a shady path by the river, down by the old town part, but he recommended a hike through what used to be a farm. It started right behind the visitors center, so you didn't have to take the shuttle bus down to the town or anything. It was only 2.2 miles, and there were some cannons, an overlook to the river, and some Civil War-era trenches, so it seemed like a good bet.
Before embarking on the hike, we ate lunch at the nice picnic area at the end of the parking lot. it was shady, with a lot of picnic tables, so it was nice!
After spending some time in the lovely shade of the overlook, we headed backwards just a bit to see the "earthenworks", which were some trenches and redoubts built by Gen. Sheridan to protect Harpers Ferry from Confederates coming down the Shenandoah. They were built after Harpers Ferry had already switched sides 8 times during the war, so it was a case of too little too late, unfortunately. The position was never attacked!
Then we moved on. The next part of the trail had the rebuilt foundation of the building where John Brown hid during his crazy raid on the armory down in the town. The building was moved to this farm in the early 1900s, and now it is back down in the town again, so these foundations really have no historic merit or anything. But they are filled with gravel. Micah wanted to stay the whole day and throw rocks around. When we decided it was time to move on, he pitched the loudest and longest temper tantrum you can imagine. I was so glad the trail was not crowded with people, because it honestly sounded like we were trying to butcher a hog or something! Nathan, Luke, and I took turns carrying/dragging him the remaining mile while he shrieked and carried on. He probably permanently scared Maddie and Amanda from ever having kids, LOL. He put on quite a show!
I am hoping to make another trip over to Harpers Ferry so we can visit the actual town. In retrospect, we probably should have gone down there and walked along the river, which would have been cooler and shadier. Although it would have been more crowded, and I'm sure Micah would have found something else to throw a tantrum about, so maybe it's just as well we were so isolated, LOL. Still, it was a fun day!