News Real, September 13, 2007
I finally dropped down into a bricked archway tunnel closed off about four feet one way and going off into a southern direction the other way. Approximately 50 feet from the manhole, the tunnel curved westward towards the park, where it went off into the distance to who knows where my sneakers weren't holding up in the mud.
From an alleyway vantage point, we looked back and saw a police squad car roll up to the manhole. An officer got out to investigate and we hightailed it.
The next day I visited Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District headquarters to see if I could get some information on the sewer systems under the park. I met the "old sewer" expert, who luckily never stopped to ask how I knew what the tunnel looked like when I described it to her. She was puzzled by the arched design I described, as well as the fact it was closed off at one end, and had no flow. She let me look at their original sewer map of the area that MSD drew when it formed in the 1950s. They had no record of the system I was in. Nothing on their map showed a tunnel that went south down the eastern park boundary then curved west.
Anyway, while it was probably just an old forgotten sewer, we'll never know for sure. Our fumbled attempt to explore it and the resulting 3 a.m. wake-up call for that captain got enough people pissed off that a week later the easy-to-open manhole got sealed with a solid bolted cover encased in concrete. A Meramec Valley Grotto member suggested that the sewer, if it ran above the cave, could have possibly collapsed into it somewhere along that tunnel. We'll never know.
Taylor, St. Louis
Unreal, September 6, 2007
Lastly, anyone with questions can reach me at email@example.com.
Chris Harrison, St. Louis
Music Feature, September 6, 2007
Suzanne Patterson, Troy, Illinois