Hidden in the depths of the Mississippi River Valley is a mythic cave. It is known to the Dakota as Wakan Tipi (the house of the spirits) In the old days an ancient spirit lived within its walls. When the railroad industrialists came to power they built rail tunnels through the cave to kill the spirit. I decided I needed to seek answers myself. My search began at the Indian Mounds Park.


The Mounds park is an ancient Indian burial ground atop a high hill. I would have to descend down and cross the rail yard if I wanted to get to the forest containing Wakan Tipi. There were eleven mounds in the past, but they were destroyed to make roads. Now, the remaining mounds are kept safe by Parks and Rec.2

There is a statue of a mother figure overlooking the skyline.


The Airway Beacon is placed near the mounds in a strategic location overlooking the skylines of the Twin Cities.4

I stood and examined the skylines for awhile. The two cities’ skyscrapers create the impression of an endless metropolis.

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I looked down, planning my route across the railyard to reach Wakan Tipi.

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And then, I was on my way.

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