Vision Quest | The Ascent

© Atala Dorothy Toy

Vision Quest | The Ascent

This is a rock guardian protector. He watches over all who ascend into a natural Vision Quest site, located at what is now the Rim Rock Trail, Shawnee Forest, Illinois.

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This rock guardian has been on duty for centuries, faithfully watching over those who seek to pass by and enter a tall rock cavern once used as a Vision Quest site.

This is the ascent point to the natural vision quest site, which very few modern hikers recognize. It is located at the Rim Rock Trail in Southern Illinois.


Native American tradition honors the vision quest. This is a journey to find your own specific purpose and path through life. This journey is frequently made to some significant energy spot. The earth contributes its own power to your personal search.

To reach this site nowadays, you have to travel down a long trail to a ravine by a gently flowing stream. This energy-rich site has been occupied by many different peoples over the centuries for many different purposes; there is a large cave overhang just left of this photograph which offers protection from the elements. Leading up out of the ravine is a somber, hooded Rock Guardian, overseeing a rocky path that in more recent times acquired a rough stone stairway. Your Vision Quest journey is about to begin.

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