When we were making up our mind whether to choose Quebec or Niagara Falls, I didn’t know that Quebec could have a waterfall. That surprise was revealed when our stay in the heart of French Canada had been confirmed. It was exciting to learn that Montmorency Falls, one of Quebec Province’s most spectacular sites, was going to be the first stop.
The excitement was temporarily lost in getting up at 3 in the morning to drive through Vermont, Maine, and part of Canada before sunrise, but this part of the trip was actually quite magical. The forest and mountains along the highway looked mysterious, covered with fog, with a dark starry night above. The presence of silence was deafening. Gradually the colors started to rise from the foggy woods, fields and lakes in unexpected shades of violet, cobalt, emerald, and peach. The sun was coming up and at breakfast time we arrived to the open year-round Montmorency Falls Park filled with light and flowers, and uncrowded.
More photogenic and 30 meters higher than Niagara Falls, located just 13 km from the center of old Quebec City, this majestic waterfall invites you to admire the power of nature, and skillfulness of modest human engineering. It was also a picture-perfect scene for lunch. Although the meal was, as always, a mixture of carefully picked healthy goodies and accidentally delicious junk food, I don’t remember what I ate, but can recall in detail the view in front of the folded chairs.
Montmorency Falls dominates the landscape. Its dramatic view is reinforced by extreme sports - zip line rides over water. A wooden suspension bridge also looks impressive - from the viewpoints below as well as when entering it. Your legs may wobble, but only for a few steps. After that, you’ll run ahead freely and with joy, like other photographers.
From the bridge you can admire the falls, its surrounding cliffs, but also the beautiful panorama of Quebec, the Laurentian Hills, and the Saint Lawrence River. The wind and view literally take your breath away.
Looking at the rushing water, you may contemplate the glory of natural world and, perhaps, our humble chance to bear witness, and to rise every time we fall.