Fish are becoming more plentiful in the James as it flows thru Richmond, and the blue herons are taking notice. For the past couple of years they’ve built a rookery just south of Shockoe Slip, one of the centers of downtown nightlife. And thanks to the James River Park, you can get fantastic views of the herons and their nests!
Hubby and I finally found where to park to get access to the pipeline walkway: follow Byrd Street down to 12th and drive thru the floodwall toward the river, over the cobblestones, then go back thru the floodwall to the large parking lot and park. Walk thru the pedestian gate thru the wall and you can see the pipeline walkway down below you. Follow the path to the left until it drops down thru the chainlink fence to the pipeline. You’ll have to take the pipe ladder down a few rungs, but it’s not difficult.
We followed the pipeline upriver past the end of the guard rails to where it comes out at the east end of Brown’s Island. That would be another access – under the 9th street bridge.
There were quite a few folks out watching the herons and photographing the river; also several groups of kayaker’s enjoying the rapids. Check it out!