Eagle Point Labyrinth
Labyrinth Lands End
Burnt once, destroyed twice, and rebuilt at the edge of the continent, the labyrinth at Land’s End may be Land’s End’s most beautiful secret.
San Francisco artist Eduardo Aguilera was first inspired by learning about other historic labyrinths, and then moved to create his own after spending time along the rocky shoreline of Land’s End, lighting candles and creating a small shrine to, in the artist’s own words, “peace, love and enlightenment.”
Aguilera's creation is constructed simply of a stone outline following the classic seven-circuit Chartres labyrinth. At first he hoped to keep it anonymous but his work was quickly discovered by other hikers and explorers.
The labyrinth has been destroyed on two occasions by persons unknown, but Aguilera rebuilt it each time. In 2004 the artist lit the labyrinth with candles for the Winter Solstice, and in 2005 he lit it ablaze for the Vernal Equinox.
On a dramatic outcropping with sweeping views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the Marin Headlands and out to sea, the labyrinth’s location is naturally both peaceful and majestic. The labyrinth is not officially endorsed by the Land’s End National Park area, and the trails leading to the promontory are unmaintained. Visitors be warned: the cliffside location can be windy and slippery.
Aguilera has constructed at least two other labyrinths in the Marin Headlands and San Bruno Mountains.
It is rare in this day and age to find a hidden treasure right under your nose particularly when in such a well-known city like San Francisco. So when I first discovered the Lands End Labyrinth I was surprised and excited. Little did I know that it would lead to a series of cascading discoveries across the San Francisco bay area and lead me to meet the man responsible for it.
Lands End has been a favorite spot of mine to visit since well before I moved to San Francisco. When I used to visit on business I would often spend an afternoon taking in the amazing views of the Marin Headlands and Golden Gate Bridge from the Lands End walking paths. More recently I proposed to my fiancée from an overlook on these trails. 3 months after our engagement my fiancée and I again were walking along Lands End trails and I caught something out of the corner of my eye that looked unusual… an odd plateau with something on it that I couldn’t quite make out. Intent on taking a closer look we headed off down a staircase/path that leads to Muir Beach from the main trail. At the end of this path is a large plateau overlooking the inlet adjoining the Pacific Ocean and the San Francisco Bay. On this plateau I came across the Lands End labyrinth.
Quite impressed with the size, placement and work that had gone into the labyrinth I couldn’t resist but walk through it. I was very intrigued by the labyrinth and instantly identified the photographic possibilities given the amazing views surrounding the point it was built on. Given that my fiancée and I were walking our 3 dogs, time was short and I seemed to be the only one fascinated by the existence of this maze in such a serene location.
Not content to find such an interesting thing and pass it by so quickly I adjusted my schedule the next day so that I could make it back with my camera. While visiting the labyrinth on my second visit I was able to see others enjoying it and incorporating it into their evening exercise routines. Not only had a select few people found this hidden treasure they had begun to build their routines around it combining the serenity of the scenic surroundings with the meditative qualities of walking through the labyrinth. Taking photos well into sunset I too took the time to walk the labyrinth again. This time I decided to take a closer look at the centerpiece to see what people had left. Notes, stickers and random objects were left behind, but just as I turned to walk out I noticed a hidden piece of paper under the rocks. Carefully removing this paper, I read it to discover that this was not the only labyrinth created in the area. A map was detailed on this paper outlining how to find a second labyrinth and an email was also listed. Now I was twice as curious to the source of these creations as when I first discovered the Lands End Labyrinth.