Photo by Kevin H.
Last Saturday, GM took a trip out to Nats park to watch the Nationals get beaten up by the Phillies. But on the way home, he finally gave the new American River Taxi a try, and he can report that it’s the only way to get to and from the stadium.
GM had to buy scalped tickets because the game was sold old. As a result he had to show up late to the game (tickets are a lot cheaper at that point), so taking the taxi out to the park wasn’t an option (it arrives before the game).
After the final out of the game, GM got up and left the stadium with the rest of the crowd. But rather than heading back to the Metro, he made his way over to the First Base Gate. From there he crossed over Potomac Ave. and entered Diamond Teague Park. Two water taxis were waiting for the crowd: the American River Taxi (which is a small pontoon boat) and the Potomac River Boat Company (which runs down to Alexandria).
GM hopped aboard the Dolly Madison (the name of American River Taxi’s boat). About 10-12 other passengers ended up accompanying him. After the stadium’s gates were closed (approximately 10-15 minutes after the last out) the ship set off. Tickets are $9 one way and can be bought on the boat.
The boat travels along at about 15 miles and hour (sorry, 13 knots). Not speedy but not painfully slow. For what it’s worth, the boat left at the same time the Alexandria-bound boat did, but by the time it took the turn around Hains Point, the Georgetown-bound boat had left the other in its wake.
The ride is quite beautiful. You are treated first to views down the Potomac to Alexandria. Then National Airport looms into view and as you turn north towards Georgetown, you are treated to the sight of planes coming in for a landing overhead.
As the monuments pass on the right, you gently slip underneath the Virginia bridges. Passing Memorial Bridge, the boat slows down to observe the no wake rule.
From there it’s just a few minutes more and you’re pulling up to Washington Harbour. Docking takes seconds and then you’re just a short walk through Georgetown to home.
The ride itself takes only 25-30 minutes. For GM, the door-to-door time was just about the same as if he took Metro. But it was a significantly more enjoyable ride.
So next time you head out to watch the Nats lose, you really ought to go by boat.