Skip to main content

A stroll along The Mall

A few weeks ago, Maggie and I headed up to Washington, DC for a fun weekend.  We met up with co-blogger Doug Kerr and Adam Froehlig for some sight seeing along The Mall.  This was really both of ours first time to Washington.  I had been there once before on a band trip in the mid-90s, but I didn't really see much, nor did I take any pictures.

For the entire photo set on flickr - head here.

After a quick lunch, we headed down Pennsylvania Avenue towards the Capitol.  One of the most impressive things about the Capitol building is its size.

IMG_3312

You really can't appreciate the size and the idea of 'Capitol Hill' until you see it in person.

IMG_3362

Another amazingly impressive view is down the Mall towards the Washington Monument.  It is one of many views along The Mall that are awe inspiring, even on a dreary overcast day.

IMG_3318

Adam had suggested that we visit the National Botanic Garden which is located right next to the Capitol.  This unplanned stop quickly became a favorite.

Pretty in Pink

IMG_3334

Hibiscus Flower - US Botanic Garden

From there, it was a walk down to the Washington Monument along The Mall.  I never realized how much of a public park The Mall is.  Picnics, pick-up soccer and ultimate frisbee games, among other activities were going on throughout the length of the walk.

IMG_3364

Even though the Cherry Blossom Festival was a few weeks away.  A few blossoms were just starting to peek out.

IMG_3373

The Washington Monument is impressive especially as a singular piece.  We were unable to get a guided tour of the monument, as they sell out fast.  You typically want to make a reservation online about a week or more in advance of your visit - they sell out that quickly.

IMG_3387

The World War II Monument is very powerful.  Dedicated in 2004, it salutes the millions of Americans that served during the war both home and abroad.  It is an amazing dedication to all of the Americans that sacrificed so much - and for many their lives - during World War II.

IMG_3401

IMG_3394

IMG_3406

IMG_3398

To me, the most powerful and touching piece of the memorial is the Freedom Wall.

IMG_3408

The wall consists of 4,048 gold stars.  Each star represents 100 Americans who lost their lives during the war.

IMG_3413

We next went to the Lincoln Memorial.  Another structure that you can't imagine the size until you see it up close and personal.

IMG_3417

IMG_3428

Also, the views of across The Mall and the Potomac from the Lincoln Memorial are just as impressive.  On the west side of the monument - the view looking across the Potomac and over the Memorial Bridge to Arlington National Cemetery is quiet yet powerful.

IMG_3435

Looking East towards the Capitol, it's breathtaking.

IMG_3424

The Reflecting Pool is under renovations.  Even though it is not there, you can see why that view from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial is one of the best in our nation's capital.

Time was starting to run short, so our final stop was at the Vietnam Memorial.  To many, the memorial is one of the most powerful and personal of all the monuments in Washington.

IMG_3439

IMG_3447

IMG_3450

Washington is an amazing place to visit.  What we saw in three to four hours is only a small piece of the experience.  However, this small visit was more than enough to make Maggie and I realize even more how amazing and special of a country we do live in.  We hope to be back soon!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Paper Highways: The Unbuilt New Orleans Bypass (Proposed I-410)

  There are many examples around the United States of proposed freeway corridors in urban areas that never saw the light of day for one reason or another. They all fall somewhere in between the little-known and the infamous and from the mundane to the spectacular. One of the more obscure and interesting examples of such a project is the short-lived idea to construct a southern beltway for the New Orleans metropolitan area in the 1960s and 70s. Greater New Orleans and its surrounding area grew rapidly in the years after World War II, as suburban sprawl encroached on the historically rural downriver parishes around the city. In response to the development of the region’s Westbank and the emergence of communities in St. Charles and St. John the Baptist Parishes as viable suburban communities during this period, regional planners began to consider concepts for new infrastructure projects to serve this growing population.  The idea for a circular freeway around the southern perimeter of t

Hernando de Soto Bridge (Memphis, TN)

The newest of the bridges that span the lower Mississippi River at Memphis, the Hernando de Soto Bridge was completed in 1973 and carries Interstate 40 between downtown Memphis and West Memphis, AR. The bridge’s signature M-shaped superstructure makes it an instantly recognizable landmark in the city and one of the most visually unique bridges on the Mississippi River. As early as 1953, Memphis city planners recommended the construction of a second highway bridge across the Mississippi River to connect the city with West Memphis, AR. The Memphis & Arkansas Bridge had been completed only four years earlier a couple miles downriver from downtown, however it was expected that long-term growth in the metro area would warrant the construction of an additional bridge, the fourth crossing of the Mississippi River to be built at Memphis, in the not-too-distant future. Unlike the previous three Mississippi River bridges to be built the city, the location chosen for this bridge was about two

Memphis & Arkansas Bridge (Memphis, TN)

  Like the expansion of the railroads the previous century, the modernization of the country’s highway infrastructure in the early and mid 20th Century required the construction of new landmark bridges along the lower Mississippi River (and nation-wide for that matter) that would facilitate the expected growth in overall traffic demand in ensuing decades. While this new movement had been anticipated to some extent in the Memphis area with the design of the Harahan Bridge, neither it nor its neighbor the older Frisco Bridge were capable of accommodating the sharp rise in the popularity and demand of the automobile as a mode of cross-river transportation during the Great Depression. As was the case 30 years prior, the solution in the 1940s was to construct a new bridge in the same general location as its predecessors, only this time the bridge would be the first built exclusively for vehicle traffic. This bridge, the Memphis & Arkansas Bridge, was completed in 1949 and was the third