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Best Place You Can't Get to Without Risking Arrest 

Coast Guard Island

You'd expect anything this locked-down to have some pretty cool stuff. The century-old man-made island is legally part of Alameda, but is accessible by land only by one well-guarded bridge in Oakland. You can't pass the guards without a government ID card and a good reason for being there. But wait. With an island, there's another way, and occasionally someone tries it, unwittingly or otherwise. There was the guy who arrived soaking wet after swimming from the mainland. When confronted, he got belligerent, made some inept kung-fu moves, and ended up getting arrested. Boaters sometimes cluelessly land. One guy landed and sauntered across the island looking for a store and restaurant. He was questioned, found harmless, and launched back into the estuary. So what's on this Xanadu that's kept so tightly protected? Well, we'd like to tell you it's an island of delight and intrigue, worth the risk of sneaking aboard. But unless you like military architecture and outdoor art of the anchor-and-cannon sort, you'll be disappointed. Lots of office buildings, a gym, a junior-college-grade cafeteria, a small PX, a ship repair station, a rarely used helipad, and a 1.2-mile running track around the circumference of the island are among the high points. If you're lucky you might see a dog running the canine training obstacle course, but you can probably safely see that just fine with binoculars from the MarineMax docks, 300 yards away along 880 in Oakland.

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