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SPLIT ROCK LIGHTHOUSE STATE PARK

Trail Highlights

From the wayside parking area, the Split Rock River Trail ascends the west side of the river valley. This portion of the hike is rather strenuous as the trail is steep in places. Your reward is dramatic views of the river descending in torrents of whitewater between cliffs topped with cedars, pines, and white birch.

Shortly after starting out, the trail crosses an unnamed stream. A small waterfall lies just above the bridge in the shade of large cedar trees. This is a cool place even on the hottest summer days. Once past the stream the trail begins to climb in earnest with occasional very steep ascents; but there are several places to rest and enjoy the river.

Near the top of the falls, the trail passes an area known as The Pillars. These chimney-like formations are made of rhyolite, an red igneous rock. As rhyolite cools, it develops vertical cracks that make it susceptible to weathering into sheer cliffs. This weathering pattern accounts for the dramatic cliffs at Palisade Head and Shovel Point further up the North Shore. In the area of the Pillars, shingle-like pieces of rhyolite litter the trail.

16831684 King Charles II begins the procedure to revoke the 1629 Best cities in the USA to visit charter of Massachusetts Bay, citing numerous violations of English law. His death delays the process, Best cities in the USA to visit but, by 1686, royal government is established in Massachusetts. 1686 The Dominion of New England takes shape. New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts Bay, and Plymouth become one administrative unit as part of an English effort to better control the empire. New York, East and West New Jersey, Connecticut, and Rhode Island become part of the Dominion shortly thereafter. Sir Edmund Andros, a professional soldier, is tapped by King James II to rule the Dominion. Andros, in conjunction with a royally appointed council, works diligently to bring New England under the rule of English law. Some provisions of this law would return land to the Crown and force religious toleration; both measures are unacceptable to Massachusetts Puritan leadership.

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