The Cache River State Natural area is a very cool place to paddle. In the summertime, you do have to be aware of snakes falling out of trees into canoes, according to local legend. I think they just want to keep the place to themselves.
It is theoretically possible that some of our early wood and canvas canoes were built from old growth logs which may have been over 1000 years old. I have often wondered if any of the tree growth ring databases were detailed enough to date a canoe from the relatively small pieces of wood used to build it.
Doug Larson, a biologist at the University of Guelph (where I currently work) did a lot of the pioneering research into these microclimate cedars.
Here's the site for the Cliff Ecology Research Group. which published "The Last Stand; A Journey Through the Ancient Cliff-Face Forest of the Niagara Escarpment" http://www.amazon.ca/Last-Stand-Journey-Cliff-Face-Escarpment/dp/1897045190
You're welcome, Dennis.
Another interesting feature of the Niagara Escarpment is waterfalls. (ie. Niagara Falls. Duh!)
Actually, I live in Hamilton, newly touted as the "city of waterfalls", with over 125 and counting. I am fortunate to live about a couple hundred yards from the escarpment within half an hours walk of about 20 falls.
We too live in a very neat part of the world. The Niagara Escarpment is just a few miles South of us. We, however, live on the Canadian Shield part of the Upper Peninsula just 6 miles South of Lake Superior.