It is good to go off the beaten paths every now and then. A couple of weeks ago during my lunch break, I was exploring an area that I had recently "discovered" not too far from where I work. I was on a narrow unpaved path, the "main artery" that crosses the wooded lot when I came to a fork going to the right and which I had ignored in the past. That day I decided to go that way.
About 100 m later, I came to a sort of clearing in the woods where the ground was slightly elevated and surrounded by a narrow concrete border. There were chunks of concrete littering the ground.
The peculiar thing about these slabs of concrete was that they had pebbles embedded in them. While searching for snails during a later trip to the same spot, I discovered that the thin accumulation of leaf litter at the surface was hiding a thick layer of pebbles underneath, the kinds you would find at a beach or along a creek.
I suspect there was once a house here.
As the recent satellite picture from Google Earth shows, the general area is surrounded by residential streets to the north, industrial buildings to the south, railroad tracks to the east and a busy road to the west.
The yellow marker is the approximate location of the house ruin.
It is surprising that this parcel of land has escaped development so far. However, the trees are quite young; they may have been growing for only about 20 years or so. Furthermore, the outdated topographic map shows a Woodbury Street and an Oberlin Road that are not there anymore. You can still see the faint outlines of those streets on the Google Earth picture. The topo map doesn't show the area as being wooded (it would have been green). So it appears that this area didn't use to be as "wild" as it is now (I saw a deer there on another trip). However, the topo map doesn't show any houses despite the labelled streets.
Map from TopoZone.
And yes, I did find snail shells there but that's for another post.