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UER Forum > Journal Index > Slim Jim's mission logs > 2 Twin Cities mysteries solved (Viewed 3111 times)
2 Twin Cities mysteries solved
entry by Slim Jim 
11/11/2004 12:47 AM

Last weekend, I went to the cities, with the primary goal of finding a connection to an underground location that was previously accessible, but now is too risky to attempt entry the normal way.

First, EatsTooMuchJam, Atomic, Atomic's friend (don't remember his UE name - let me know if you know it) and MacGyver joined Junkyard, Asylunt, and I to hit the West Bank tailraces. My goal was to check out the only tunnel in the tailraces that hadn't been explored yet. While the others took pictures and rode a boat around in the scenic main tailrace, Junkyard, Atomic's friend, and I explored the Crawl from Hell. It was about 2' high and 4' wide, with iron arches jutting out of the floor which in some cases could be crawled under, but in most cases impeded passage and made us have to slither over them. The floor was covered with sharp rocks, which evidently had washed in over the years. This tunnel evidently used to be walking height, but somehow all these rocks had washed in over the years, leaving a hellaceous crawl. We followed it for a strenuous half hour, and it finally widened out and ended at a small standing-height dip with a tunnel going straight ahead, and a pipe going left.

The tunnel ended at a rungless drop shaft. The pipe, however, came right out in a large storm drain, which, to my surprise, looked just like the Washington Ave outfall! I decided we should just get our feet wet and look for an easier way out that way, so I dived in, and indeed, right around the corner was a rusted sign indicating that this was 6th Street. We were in the right place. This was the first underground place I had ever been to in Minneapolis, and it brought back memories from years ago. But there was no time to reminisce, because we were tired and knew the rest of the crew was waiting for us. We headed back along the drain, but, as I knew, it required a swim to get back out to the river. So we took a different route which years ago connected to a tunnel deep underneath a building on the surface, and sure enough, it was still there. We exited through the building, and went back to find the rest of the group in the same spot that we had left them.

Later on, minus ETMJ, Atomic, his friend, and MacGyver but plus Mr. X, we headed over to the sewer that I was really hoping and expecting to connect to [location censored]. In short, we climbed, and hauled our waders and rappelling gear, down a ~100-foot cliff, up a storm drain, rigged a rope ladder down into a sewer, followed the sewer for several blocks, and rappelled down about 25' from the sewer into a storm drain. The hardest part was keeping the pieces of shit - many of which were still solid - off our bags and rappelling gear, because there was no good place to set down our gear. But we made it alright, and proceeded to explore the storm drain, where I guessed there would be a connection to ...

After checking the entirety of the drain and its tributaries, we were at a loss. The only place that remained was a hole in the ceiling of a large cavity in the sandstone, with a good-sized waterfall dumping down it. Given the location, I was entirely convinced that this was it. Mr. X was thoughtful to bring a folding spade, so Junkyard feverishly dug footholds into the sandstone in the hopes of getting a closer look. But we didn't have time to get very far, and with all the water coming down it was skeptical.

Then, we decided to get wet and take a closer look up around the edges of the hole, to try to discern if it really went anywhere. Sadly, this revealed that it was only a void with walls on all sides. There's a small chance that we missed something, but I really doubt it. Too bad.

Underground scouting missions are always exciting because you never know what you're going to find, or if you're going to find what you're looking for. Sometimes you find it, sometimes you don't. But it was still worth the trip. It was the first time any of us had rappelled in the sewers!

Junkyard also has a brief trip log, with pics!:

We are now the Poop Squad!

[last edit 11/11/2004 12:48 AM by Slim Jim - edited 1 times]
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Noble Donor

Location: St. Paul, MN
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Re: 2 Twin Cities mysteries solved
< Reply # 1 on 11/11/2004 6:31 AM >
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Hmm, drains, sewers, height differences... I have one guess, but I'm kind of doubtful about it. Washington Ave. outfall! sweet, I need to go swimming in some Mpls. drains sometime, those Peter Sands stories get me all fired up.

"Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it."

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Re: 2 Twin Cities mysteries solved
< Reply # 2 on 11/12/2004 12:55 AM >
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Or you can wait til winter when they shut off the water and take a raft Navy SEAL style.

I drink gasoline for breakfeast and beer for dinner!
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Re: 2 Twin Cities mysteries solved
< Reply # 3 on 12/29/2004 6:56 PM >
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I'd rather do it the hard way. it makes things more fun.. and it makes others that arent that big into exploring think twice about trying it..

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