Daily Archives: August 17, 2011

A path to one of Bainbridge’s great mysteries

I called up city Road Ends Committee chairwoman Bitsy Ostenson last week to chat about the rumor that someone had built a deck and stairwell on the Pleasant Lane road end, a narrow strip of property intended for public beach access.

Turns out the rumor was true. Ostenson isn’t happy about the private use of public land, and is a bit nonplussed about the city’s reticence to do anything about it.

But this is not nearly the only island road end that needs attention, she said.

A big one in her mind is the North Street road end on Agate Point. It’s the only public access point to the beach where a rare rock carving has sat facing Indianola for some 1,500 to 3,000 years.

Known as the Haleelts petroglyph, it confounded Bainbridge’s first white settlers and appears to be a mystery even to local tribes, said Bainbridge historian Jerry Elfendahl.

“Its origins are unknown to the Suquamish or anyone,” Elfendahl wrote in an essay about the petroglyph.

The petroglyph is grown over with barnacles but it’s periodically cleaned up to reveal what looks to be faces and human figures.

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