So here is the Cincinnati edition of my continuing urban kayaking adventures. For this one I took part in Paddlefest 2010, the 9th annual running of the event which is billed as the nation’s largest on-water canoe and kayak festival with over 2,000 boats participating. The organizers shut down all river traffic for several hours on a Saturday morning so that we paddlers had about a 9 mile stretch of the Ohio river all to ourselves. Along with exploring the tributaries of the little Miami and Licking Rivers, my total course was probably around 11 miles.
The Ohio river is freaking HUGE! It was a much different urban kayaking experience than my previous forays in Chicago and Milwaukee, which have tiny little cozy urban creeks running through them. On the Ohio everything is big, and cozy it is certainly not. I really got a good sense of the power and majesty that a real river like the Ohio has as it runs past a river city like Cincinnati. And this tour isn’t a pure water tour, as Chris (coldayman) took me on a very extensive tour of the area on Sunday afternoon culminating in a trip up to the top of the carew tower, so there are some bonus non-kayak shots tacked on at the end.
So, without further ado, here’s the tour, and if you dig this urban kayaking thing, be sure to check out my previous threads if you haven’t seen them before:
Chicago River: north branch
Chicago River: south branch
Milwaukee River & other waterways
1. the put-in at coney island. For 2,000 boats it was well orchestrated and very non-chaotic.
2. the I-275 bridge crossing the river. Early on there was still some lingering fog hanging out in the bottom of the valley.
3. I-275 close-up.
4. general river scene.
5. a large building, possibly apartments or a hotel, perched high on the bluffs.
6. an odd structure along the bank on the kentuck side. No idea what is/was.
7. homes high on the bluff on the Kentucky side.
8. hundreds of canoes & kayaks dot the riverscape.
9. another riverfront structure whose function I could not discern.
10. paddling up the little Miami river, a tributary to the Ohio. It flows through a wide flat plain absent of the high bluffs found along the Ohio itself.
11. paddling back down the little Miami as it opens up into the ohio in the distance
12. a cozy little nest high above on the Kentucky side
13. Sohio? WTF? I hadn’t seen one of those signs in a while.
14. and old working tug turned party boat.
15. a river bank marina along the Kentucky side.
16. a residential highrise in the Columbia-Tusculum neighborhood.
17. and old paddle wheeler rotting away.
18. east side neighborhoods of Cincinnati finally come into view
19. highrises of edgecliff
20. more city high on the bluffs above.
21. the first glimpse of the skyline as I begin to round the big bend in the ohio east of downtown.
22. still rounding the bend, there’s mount adams.
23. buildings, hills, and trees, trees, trees. Cincy has one hell of a tree canopy covering it’s urban hills.
24. edgecliff highrises
25. the big mac bridge comes into view in the distance.
26. some colorful houses along the riverbank.
28. a cool looking crane.
29. the developing urban waterfront of Bellevue kentucky
30. mount adams, one of my favorite nabes of cincy.
31. unusual architecture atop mount adams.
32. looking back over my shoulder at the east side neighborhoods along the river.
33. the building in the foreground is the boathouse, a satellite restaurant of the famous Montgomery Inn, home of the best ribs I’ve ever eaten.
34. a new highrise condo tower in Bellevue, chris told me it’s planned to get a taller sibling in the future.
35. the beautiful yellow fanasticness of the big mac bridge.
36. big mac again.
37. floating restaurant barges on the Kentucky side.
38. former railroad bridge turned pedestrian bridge known locally as “the purple people eater bridge”.
39. a view of the downtown skyline.
40. queen city square looking good. not much more to go.
41. the skyline of Covington with liebeskind’s recent curvy, swooping addition.
42. I was happy to see the magnificent old Roebling suspension bridge getting some TLC, but I was also frustrated that it meant I wouldn’t get any good shots of it.
43. paul brown stadium, home of the bengals
44. great american ballpark, home of the reds.
45. the licking river, a tributary on the Kentucky side that splits Newport from Covington.
46. millionaire’s row right on the river in Covington, adjacent to the mouth of the licking river.
47. the skyline, front and center
48. carew and PNC, two classics that look great together.
49. and the paddle came to an end with our take-out at the public boat landing next to great American ballpark.
And that ends the on the water tour, here are a few bonus shots, mostly from the top of carew tower.
50. a view of the skyline from a hill in Newport, Kentucky.
51. the oh so cute and quaint and charming neighborhood of mount adams as seen from above.
52. the neighborhood of Pendleton, chris said it’s a ghetto shithole, but it looks nice from up here.
53. over the rhine, what’s not to love. Some of the best 19th century urbanism in the Midwest.
54. more over the rhine
55. Queen city square almost topped out
56. PNC tower in all of its glory
57. bellevue, kentucky
58. Newport, kentucky
59. Covington, kentucky
60. the old sun times building, and art deco treasure
61. city hall
62. one last shot, waiting for megabus, PNC & friends catching the long rays of the setting sun.