Tag Archives: C&O Canal

C&O Canal Monument, Twilight, Georgetown

CanalMonumentNight

The monument is adjacent to where Wisconsin Avenue crosses over the C&O Canal in Georgetown. It is effectively a zero mile marker, although not precisely, as the canal continues a few hundred yards past the marker to empty into Rock Creek. It commemorates the construction of the canal. I caught it right at “magic hour” when the sky is just dark enough that it matches the ambient street light, but is not so dark as to lose all detail and color. Here it has a wonderful indigo glow. And no, no flash was used in the making of this shot- this was purely ambient light from the street lamps and the sky.

Key Bridge

Key Bridge is one of the most iconic structures in Washington DC and a major attraction in its own right. It spans the Potomac between Georgetown and Rosslyn, and carries a tremendous volume of traffic between DC and Virginia every day.

The view of the underside is one most people never get, of this or any bridge for that matter.

Under Key Bridge
Under Key Bridge

Key Bridge is chock full of strange hidden nooks, like this service door to something in the infrastructure. Despite being sealed off behind chain-link fencing, people have managed to get in and graffiti it.

Service Door, Key Bridge
Service Door, Key Bridge

The prototypical view of Key Bridge, from the West side. I’m fascinated by how someone managed to get to the bottoms of the piers and graffiti them. You’d have to either have a boat, sail up to the foot of the pier, then climb up 20+ feet from the waterline, or somehow rappel down from the pedestrian deck of the bridge. Not a recipe for success on either front, as I’d imagine you’d be spotted very quickly and arrested.

Key Bridge, Evening, West Side
Key Bridge, Evening, West Side

Here’s a view of the underside where the bridge crosses the C&O Canal.

Canal, Under Key Bridge
Canal, Under Key Bridge

This is the tower of the old Trolley Barn, which used to house the streetcars that plied DC in the late 19th/early 20th century. Now it is office space on the upper levels. The view is from under Key Bridge, where the on-ramp to the Whitehurst Freeway (really just an elevated bypass to get around the street traffic of Georgetown) splits off of Key Bridge.

Trolley Barn Tower, Georgetown
Trolley Barn Tower, Georgetown

A few shots from Sunday

I went out on Sunday evening with a friend of mine to do some shooting over at the old mill ruins at Rileys Lock along the C&O Canal. The ruins are buried in the woods, and a popular hangout for teenagers looking to paint some graffiti or smoke or sit silently next to each other playing on their cellphones. You know, usual teenager stuff.

Climb Me
Climb Me

I loved the accidental humor of the vine following the instructions on the graffiti here.

I was still playing around with my new-to-me Canon 135 F2 L lens, and here are some examples of what it can do. The first shot is the canal house at the Riley’s Lock viaduct. I was intrigued by the play of shadows from the nearby tree on the stone wall. After getting home and downloading the shot onto my Mac, I looked at it and thought, “there’s some better, more interesting shots within this” so I made a couple crops, which I’ll show below. Comments and thoughts greatly appreciated.

Canal House Windows
Canal House Windows

Here’s the full-frame original shot.
Canal House Window, Left
Canal House Window, Left

Canal House Window, Right
Canal House Window, Right

And last but not least, the brownstone rail end with a dedication chiseled into it.

Viaduct railing end pillar
Viaduct railing end pillar