Sleeping Giant Provincial Park

Sleeping Giant:The View From Here

Dispatch and Photos by Ryan Edwardson 

Four years have passed since I first viewed the craggily profile of the Sleeping Giant.
Making our way up a grassy hill, my friend Allison had promised that the short hike would be worth the scenic storytelling. Her past few years as a resident of Thunder Bay meant she was quite familiar with the city's quasi-mascot—or perhaps 'totem' is a more precise description.
Cresting the hill and looking to the distance, beyond houses strewn against a shimmering harbor, rested an imposing monolith. An Ojibway legend that had become a Canadian ecological icon. The Sleeping Giant. Nanabijou, spirit of the deep sea water and now, somewhat stoically, a provincial park.
Legends abound. The most common is that Nanabijou had rewarded the Ojibway with knowledge of a silver mine only to have its secret location discovered by outsiders. That betrayal of covenant, of sacred information, meant that Nanabijou himself was transformed into stone as punishment. Where once there had only been water now laid Nanabijou, the Sleeping Giant, face to the sky, the silver mine resting near his toes.
I snapped an off-the-cuff photograph, a routine action that any visitor would instinctively do upon being told of a subject's fame.
Sure, the scenic view of the Sleeping Giant was nice, and in that Allison had fulfilled her promise. But there was something more. A notion common amongst all those afflicted with wanderlust. If the Sleeping Giant seemed interesting from afar, its ragged edges cutting the horizon and in possession of a background story that was literally legendary… what would it be like to actually visit? 

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