A long time ago, I have mentioned paths as a landscape paradigm. Today, using pictures I recently too at the Giant City State Park in Illinois, we vary the paths to mind trails.
Above is the clear trail: It has stepping stones, and walls on both sides, to prevent is from erring, and for support. There is no doubt, we will walk this path, even if it leads us into darkness. Of different character is the doubtful trail: There, behind these trees, is there really a way for us to walk?
Equally disturbing is the desperate trail which we seek when looking for an exit. We might follow any temptation, regardless where it leads.
Then there is the blocked trail. It leaves us options: Crawl through, remove the obstacle, go around. That’s not too bad.
More problematic is the doubtful trail, that looks like it might continue, but we won’t know until we try.
Finally, the most terrifying of all, is the fateful trail, created by the blood of the giants that died gigaennia ago in this ancient city, without choice, leaving trails on the walls.
The trails at the Giant City State Park close at dusk. The reason seems obvious: You could get lost, fall off a cliff, and die.
The truth is more sinister. After sunset, the innocent looking gnomes go into hiding, and from the rocks the true owners of the place emerge.
These two above still have humanoid features, but you start wondering whether there are other nameless horrors here. Death by falling off a cliff might have been a merciful alternative.
I am sure Howard Phillips Lovecraft would have found inspiration here.
The Giant City State Park has its name because of the sandstone that has eroded into blocks (houses), separated by streets. After walking around last time, today we enter.
The whole place is quite spooky, even during daylight, and it is easy to get lost.
Some paths have exists, fortunately.
The location of the next two images was most impressive. It looks rather artificial, but not made by humans.
Who would design something like this where even the trees contort in desperation?
(to be continued)
In the middle of the Midwest, there is the small College town Carbondale. The nearest airport is in St. Louis, two hours away by car, if you survive the trucks that rush towards Chicago. However, it is not just rolling hills and corn fields. There is Giant City State Park, which is not, as I was afraid, another amusement park.
Instead, it is one of the best hidden gems of the midwest. The numerous trails take you through lush forests and along sandstone cliffs.
Some of the boulders have a distinctive organic appearance, and you begin to wonder whether they could come alive… Also, everything seems to tilt in unexpected ways.
Is it that these wall want to keep us out, or keep something inside?
To be continued…