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UER Forum > Journal Index > Slim Jim's mission logs > Kansas City: Finally found the 8th street tunnel; spontaneous UE is fun; scouting really pays off down there! (Viewed 5850 times)
Kansas City: Finally found the 8th street tunnel; spontaneous UE is fun; scouting really pays off down there!
entry by Slim Jim 
10/21/2004 1:11 AM

This weekend, I FINALLY got around to going back to Kansas City and checking out some leads. I've been meaning to get down there over the past few weeks, but each time it kept getting pushed out by another trip somewhere that sounded more exciting, or when/where other explorers were going to be. Last time I passed through town, I copied some pages from the KC library's file on underground mines/caves/industrial parks which are very common down there. Marking the ones on the map that I thought had at least a small chance of being abandoned, I scouted out a number of them last weekend and, unfortunately, didn't find too much. Except for one that was probably abandoned but was very well signed and claimed to have video surveillance (wear your halloween masks, kids!).

At night, PAWolf and I headed out to hit the mystery staircase. But as soon as we got out of the car, a security guard pulled up and informed us that although we were trespassing on that parking lot, we could park there no problem. I'm glad he showed up before we snuck down the stairs!

In case he was still watching the area closely, we chose to wait until later to hit the staircase and instead, as a diversion, went over to see if the 8th Street tunnel was accessible. This tunnel is very well-known and an integral part of KC's history. Sure enough, the entrance I had scouted out last time opened up with a loud squeak. Behind it was the entrance to the tunnel, and it was open! I had forgotten my camera, but PAWolf had his so we took a picture of the article on the wall about the tunnel, and headed on down. It was a round brick arch tunnel, typical size of most train tunnels, which was set up for tours with a boardwalk and lights. Knowing that there were really two tunnels, one built later on to give the trains a lesser grade going up the hill, I looked around on the ground under the boardwalk for manholes, but none appeared.

But as we approached the end of the tunnel, we spotted a ladder going down! This was it, I knew it, the lower of the two tunnels. The floor slowly rose toward the ceiling as we approached the ladder until it was crouching height, because the floor in this section was also the ceiling of the newer tunnel. We also could see that the far end of the tunnel was completely cemented shut.

Climbing down the ladder and walking up the lower tunnel, we found calcite formations many feet long hanging off the ceiling. One only wonders how many years the place had been idle and how long the snotsicles (they looked similar to those in the sewers of St. Paul) took to form. The far end of the tunnel was clogged with dirt. I crawled up one side of the dirt pile to look if there was any chance of digging to another underground space, but it looked very doubtful. So we headed back and out.

edit: I forgot to mention here that we did stop and check out the staircase. Turns out that it leads to a large boiler room that used to be part of the basement of the building, but there were no tunnels whatsoever leading out from there, and we checked every nook and cranny. In one place that looked like it might have covered up a tunnel at one time, somebody had dug through two feet of brick, only to find more thick layers of brick!

Then, we decided to head over to a large hospital that was in the process of demolition. But on the way, several abandoned buildings caught my eye, so we parked and walked around. One large windowless building proved to have entrances that were well secured/welded in back and on the side, but the front door was unlocked! We spent the rest of the night poking around this large old auditorium, and were surprised to discover that the doors upstairs didn't lead to a balcony, but to two movie theaters above the auditorium! A very interesting place...I could say a lot but will keep it short for time's sake. Spontaneous and unplanned UEs are often the most fun.

The next day, after scouting out the quarries, I met PAWolf and explored the half of a hospital that we were on our way to when we got sidetracked by the auditorium. We left after hearing a noise that was definitely human downstairs. Then we finished scouting some quarries, and met with Azma and Sinus (allergies, huh?). Another explorer from KC had posted a picture of a green welded door that probably leads to tunnels, but we spent about an hour looking all over the likely places but not finding it. Then, we went to see if we could get into an abandoned junior high on a back street that I had stumbled on on the way to a German restaurant, but it proved to be secure and well looked after. Then we headed out to a suburb where Azma and Sinus had spotted an abandoned elementary school years ago, but it proved itself to be unfindable. Or possibly demolished. Wasn't too crazy of a night, but that's what happens when you explore - the exciting discoveries are intermixed with long, mundane scouting trips that often result in nothing being found.

Sunday was an entirely different story. I set out to scout a ghetto area in the process of re-gentrification where I had spotted what looked like the back of an abandoned apartment building, and found quite a number of abandoned buildings in only a few blocks' radius. Here are a few highlights:

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27639.jpg (58 kb, 410x307)
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It's a castle in America! Woo hoo! Actually, as I later found out from googling, it's called the City Work House, a very un-castlelike name.

On the way out of town, I stopped by an outlying town to explore its interesting, curvy streets, and to my surprise, found two abandoned hotels right next to each other downtown! The downside of these is that the police station is right next door to one of them, so it would be a dangerous place to poke around. They were also pretty much secure, at least one of them was.

Until next time.

[last edit 10/21/2004 10:46 PM by Slim Jim - edited 2 times]
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Re: Kansas City: Finally found the 8th street tunnel; spontaneous UE is fun; scouting really pays off down there!
< Reply # 1 on 10/21/2004 5:44 AM >
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Jim, you should check out Pattonsburg next time you go down I-35. They moved the whole town after a real bad flood, then it was used as a set for Ang Lee's film "Ride with the Devil". The film stars Tobey McGuire, Skeet Ulrich, and Jewel and is about the Fued between Kansas and Missouri during the Civil War.

Pattonsburg was used to portray Lawrence, KS and a few buildings were set on fire. I have drove past the old town before, there still are several structures and you can see where the streets were and shit, kind of cool. Didn't check out any buildings cause it was on our way home and we didn't have time.


"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain
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Re: Kansas City: Finally found the 8th street tunnel; spontaneous UE is fun; scouting really pays off down there!
< Reply # 2 on 10/22/2004 12:29 AM >
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Yeah, I did some research on Pattonsburg and will be sure to stop there next time. Sounds like Valmeyer, IL and Soldiers Grove, WI fit into the same category. I went to Valmeyer years ago looking for (and finding) some large underground quarries right at the old Valmeyer. They were active though, I don't remember much of the place but I think I almost got caught there. Didn't notice the former town - I think it's still active, but I wasn't looking for it. I did kinda wonder why there was a large suburban district out there that far away from any city.

Also, found some scary stuff when I was searching for Pattonsburg:


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UER Forum > Journal Index > Slim Jim's mission logs > Kansas City: Finally found the 8th street tunnel; spontaneous UE is fun; scouting really pays off down there! (Viewed 5850 times)

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