There are places in this world few dare tread. Places of which we do not speak nor even fully contemplate. Sand Point is a beach on the Mississippi near Frontenac State Park. Some claim it can only be reached by boat. This is nearly true.
For the way by foot is fraught with peril.
Welcome to the Sand Point Trail.
These Guardians Three
There are three guardians at the head of Sand Point Trail, and the wary traveler does well to heed them. They appear often as frogs or toads, but they always approach with words of warnings. Heed their words, but remember:
- One will speak only truth
- One will speak only lies
- One sings the blues on the night of the full moon, and is the only of the three to have ever known true love.
The Infinite Boardwalk
Despite its name, the Infinite Boardwalk is not actually infinite. Nearly so, but not quite. In traversing the Infinite Boardwalk, the traveler must walk for seven lifetimes, each more difficult than the last. On the last lifetime, after hundreds of years have passed, the final step brings a traveler back in time to five minutes past the moment of departure.
There are many who have broken during these long years of walking. The savvy traveler, however, is certain to bring along a guardian for company. I recommend picking the one who sings the blues.
You may wonder, looking at the photo, why there is a boardwalk at all. The land next to it is dry and clear. A foolish traveler might be tempted to touch the earth here. Do no such thing. In the spring, this land is flooded and filled with the waters of the mighty Mississippi, and the ground is infused with the spirits of the damned.
The damned like swimming, it turns out, and can be quite grumpy if left too long on dry land.
The Swimming Hole
Walk taking too long? Is the day too hot? This refreshing swimming hole is just what you need. Bring your second guardian with you into this lime green pond. You’ll be thankful for your friend’s companionship as you splash in the slimy waves. Also, the spirits who live in this part of the wood always claim one soul of any group that wishes to leave.
The guardian who lies need not die for this payment. He is happy to stay here for eternity.
Or so he says.
You’ve made it! That long and harrowing journey is finally at an end. Welcome to Sand Point, one of the upper Mississippi’s very best swimming beaches. Your truthful guardian will warn you when the witch of Sand Point is near. Heed his words, and make any sacrifices necessary to appease the witch. She is most likely there because it is an excellent place to land her kayak.
A Felled Troll
A warning before you start the long walk back. The path home is the same as that here, but is now filled with many-limbed trolls. Bring a sword or your trusty troll-slaying dog.
This is a long, contemplative walk, but definitely worth the trip if you don’t have a boat. If you do have a boat, take it to Hok-Si-La or Frontenac and find Sand Point by way of water. This hike easily earns its four of five stars, but only if the guardians agree to help you in the first place.
If not, best skip it.