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May 10, 2011

Step out on Loch Raven Dam Sunday

water%20over%20dam.jpg OK, so it will never be mistaken for Harrison Ford's plunge in The Fugitive.

Still, standing atop the 101-foot dam at Loch Raven with the mighty Gunpowder ripping below your feet is still worthy of a Facebook post, yes?

On Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Baltimore city watershed officials are having an open house to show you how water gets from the river to the spigots in your house. 

Engineers from Gannett-Fleming, the firm that did the dam reconstruction in 2005, will talk about the history of the dam and how they renovated a structure built in 1923 that holds back a reservoir covering 3.8 square miles. City staff will discuss the history of the Gunpowder Valley and how the water system operates.

After getting the background, check out the wildlife that calls Loch Raven home at the Pines Area on Loch Raven Drive just north of the bridge. The Department of Natural Resources Scales and Tales program will display rescued wildlife from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

The Pines area also is the trailhead for guided hikes at 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

City officials are inviting the public to pack a lunch and lace up its hiking boots. Call 410-396-3500 for more information.

(For the record, Ford's diving platform is North Carolina's Cheoah Dam, which stands 225 feet and creates a reservoir of 644 acres).

Posted by Candus Thomson at 7:00 AM | | Comments (1)


Does anyone know if they still close Loch Raven Drive on the weekends for foot/bicycle traffic? If so, what are the times?

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About Candus Thomson
In a world of paper vs. plastic and candy mint vs. breath mint, my early memories involved a debate about the merits of freshwater vs. saltwater.

On the one hand, a great uncle’s fishing cabin on the Susquehanna River beckoned, but so did family gatherings on the Jersey Shore.

The correct answer, thankfully, was, “both.”

As The Sun’s outdoors writer for more than a decade, I’ve fished across Maryland in one day, hiked the width of the state in one hour, camped overnight in the median of I-95 to experience the wildlife between the fast lanes and chased mountain bikers in a 24-hour marathon race.

Those are some of the highlights. I’ve also fallen in a raging Gunpowder River during a trout survey (photo available upon request), had a shark spill its guts on my clothes and been stuck in a sub-freezing Vermont wilderness with men armed with flintlocks and hatchets, shuffling along on ancient wooden snowshoes.

And, in my travels I’ve met lots of you, who share a love of the outdoors and the good times and mishaps that go along with it.

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