Dan and I enjoy photographing abandoned properties immensely. The excitement of stepping back into history, and the wonder of what transpired in these ruins can be mind-boggling.
Research is key in finding and exploring abandoned properties. Ohhhh, the Internet… What a wonderful place for information, sometimes. As I was briefly searching that morning, (yes, I have to own up to this one) I came across rumors of an old abandoned asylum within an hour or so of our home. What a find, I thought as my heart started beating faster.
Rumor, after rumor, after rumor, I read:
“I was walking through the tunnel and it leads to the old asylum”
“We even went to the other entrance by Teepee Tonka Park but did not find the tunnel leading up to the asylum”
“ Then walk through the halls. With 5-6 rooms to the left and right. Walk through that then it goes on another trail. Follow it to your left, it brings you to what I though was the tunnel that people were talking about but it is just a bunker room in the hill.”
As I was reading the posts and information regarding the property, I found that there were no directions posted as to how to reach this place directly and it seemed like there was confusion as to which property they were actually writing about. It was like reading a treasure map; picking information out of this post and obtaining information from another. No matter what we found on this photography outing, I knew that the day would be fun. With time running out for the research portion, I gathered what I had (although confusing) and we headed off with the starting point at Teepee Tonka Park in Faribault, MN. We did find the trail in the back corner of the park and headed on our way. It was a beautiful sunny day; not too hot, not too cold and we were spending the day exploring as we tried to piece together the bread crumbs found on the internet.
From this trail, we did find the tunnels and ventured through them. I could have gone the whole day without seeing the bats and spiders, but the experience and the memory made was worth it. Dan was on his game and took every opportunity to joke with me, whether if it were the noises he made in the complete darkness of the tunnels, or telling me that there was a bat right above me as I stopped to take a picture, or cracking a joke about how we were chancing ghost stories. Paybacks can be fun 🙂
We might have not found the old asylum, or whatever the abandoned buildings these posts were actually talking about, and that was okay. What we did encounter was a superb day spent together as we laughed and we joked. We got to spend a day in the great outdoors doing what we love… What could be better than that? Please take some time and join us on this day as you page through the images below.