Ramble On

Friday, June 21, 2013

Natural Chimneys Regional Park

Mary and took a little drive to Lexington, VA a few weeks back, following Route 11 south out of Harrisonburg.  We saw a few little signs Natural Chimneys Park and thought that following them to see what was there would be a good idea.

So we did, and the detour did not disappoint - there is a nice little park there, dominated by a limestone formation of seven towers, shaped like chimneys.  The formations are leftovers of the ancient sea floor that forms the Valley; some layers of these rocks can be very resistant to erosion and so you find a unique feature like these here and there.

The towers are usually described as chimneys, but as you walk around them, you are treated to alternative perspectives that may lead you to think you are looking at the ruins of a medieval castle.  And that may just be why this park is home to a Renaissance Faire, scheduled for this weekend, as a matter of fact, and a jousting contest in August.

The thought of this jousting contest, which has been held here since 1821, that really fires the imagination.  While the contest is not the stuff of movies - shining armor, where the knights try to knock each other off of their horses - just thinking about people coming here for this over nearly 200 years it kind of fun.  The contest is one where the rider tries to pick off little rings with his or her lance while riding full speed along the track.

Couple that with camping, some outdoor music, and you certainly could have a good time out there.  Here's a link to the park's web page:


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