My First Storm Drain:
In late 2012 after having spent a great deal of time exploring and shooting abandoned buildings, hospitals, train stations and houses I found myself more and more intrigued by the images I had been seeing of Toronto Rooftopping. So, late in the year I started doing some research and around November 2012 I finally got up on my first rooftop.
Now, in 2013 I have spent most of my time on rooftops and I’ve spent a little time in abandonment’s, for the most part my 2013 explores of abandonment’s have been of very high quality locations with a few small simple locations as well.
As I’ve been observing postings and photos from other explorers I’ve been getting the itch to try draining, my problem was how do I find them without flat out asking. Half of the fun is the research and figuring these things out.
I had made one inquiry to a friend about a general area of a well known drain in the town I live in, from there I started my research and eventually found the access point.
After spending a part of the day checking out some smaller more simple abandonment’s in my area I packed up my rubber boots, a few spare flashlights, a face mask and respirator and spare batteries. I checked the weather too, the last thing you want in a drain is for it to start raining outside. Storm drains are made for the purpose of diverting rain water from the city streets, through a complex series of tunnels below the city and into a body of water. Draining has a specialized set of guidelines, the foremost of which is “When it rains, no drains!” The dangers of becoming entrapped, washed away, or killed increase dramatically during a heavy rainfall……there was no rain in the forecast.
I drove by and noticed there were two city workers doing some work on power lines in the area of the inlet, so the easy way in was now off the table, I had to park a few km’s a way and find myself a tricky back route that would take me to the inlet. Once I got there I was glad to have done my research, abandoned houses have open doors, rooftops have unlocked doors and latches – drain inlets have grates and bars over them – Draining is not for the pudgy!!
I made my way in, took some photos and started walking and exploring, I came back outside two hours later having only scratched the surface of this underground maze of galvanized steel tunnels and concrete rubbish pits. I had not yet found some of the best features of this drain system so I will be going back in, plus the city I live in has many other drain systems that I am anxious to get into!