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Help: Getting Started

Help Home > Getting Started

  1. What is letterboxing?
  2. Where are letterboxes hidden?
  3. What do I need to letterbox?
  4. What is a signature stamp?
  5. Do I need a trail name?
  6. What's the difference between a trail name and an alias?
  7. What kind of logbook should I use?
  8. Where can I acquire letterboxing supplies?
  9. Why do we place letterboxes?
  10. Can we change or replace our signature stamp once we start?
  11. Can we change our trail name after we start?
  12. What are, and how do you do a postal letterbox?
  13. Are there other ideas for documenting one's adventures?
  14. What are Treasure Hikers?
  15. How do I add a "find" to my logbook?
  16. How do I narrow down the hundreds of boxes available?
  17. Is there a clue guide available for downtown Charlotte, NC?
  18. Is there a clue guide available for Latta Plantation and Nature Preserve in Huntersville, NC?
  19. What do I do when I find a geocache?
  20. Is there a clue guide available for the US National White Water Center (USNWC) in Charlotte, NC?
  21. How do I report a plant that I have made?
  22. Is there a Downtown Guide to Peoria, IL?
  23. What should I include in my letterboxing kit?
  24. Is there a clue guide available for Cane Creek Park in Waxhaw, NC?
  25. How do you agree to the Waiver of Responsibility and Disclaimer?
  26. Who do I report to if there is no letterbox at the site designated?
  27. I got bit by something that caused my arm to burn—how can I comment on hazards at the site?
  28. How do I add a comment to to a specific letterbox I have found?
  29. How do I get my letterbox to appear on the location page?


What is letterboxing?


Letterboxing is an intriguing pastime combining artistic ability with "treasure-hunts" in parks, forests, and cities around the world. Participants seek out hidden letterboxes by cracking codes and following clues. Small boxes are hidden in various locations--usually outdoors, though many are planted indoors as well--and the creator of the box will release clues so others can go out and find them later. The box is expected to have a logbook that finders can log into and a unique stamp, usually hand-carved, that the finder can stamp into their own personal logbook as a record of all the letterboxes they've found. Most letterboxers have a unique stamp to represent themselves, called a signature stamp, that they stamp into the logbooks found inside letterboxes so others who find the letterbox later know they found it.

Help Home > Getting Started


Where are letterboxes hidden?


Letterboxes can be hidden almost anywhere. Most are planted in scenic, outdoor areas, but others have been planted in bookstores, libraries, zoos, pubs, coffee shops, cemeteries, playgrounds, and one was even planted in the Smithsonian while another was planted at Disneyland. Where one can plant a letterbox is limited to only your imagination, though for legal or security reasons, you should avoid planting boxes in some locations such as national parks or airports and, well, Disneyland.

Help Home > Getting Started


What do I need to letterbox?


To start finding boxes, all you need is a clue such as those provided on Atlas Quest. It's also recommended that you have a signature stamp, a logbook, an ink pad, and something to write with. The signature stamp is what you'll stamp into the logbook you find in the letterbox. Many letterboxes contain ink pads, but you should always bring your own since most do not, and even if they do, the ink pad in the box could be frozen solid, dried up, and otherwise incapacitated. Most letterboxers carry several small ink pads with varying colors. Having something to write with is nice so you can write in the logbook the date and perhaps a comment about the weather or experiences in finding the box. And you'll want your own, personal logbook so you can record all your finds with the stamp found in the letterbox.

Many boxes require a compass to find, so a compass should become part of your regular letterboxing kit. They're cheap and lightweight, and directions for using them can be found in our compass tutorial. You'll find gloves invaluable for those times when you need to reach your hand into deep, dark holes that letterboxes are so frequently found in. Depending on the location and circumstances, you may also want to bring water, snacks, sunglasses, hat, mosquito repellent, cell phone, flashlight, first-aid kit, and anything else that would ensure your safety, comfort, and general well-being.

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What is a signature stamp?


A signature stamp is a unique stamp that represents yourself in some manner, and can be stamped into logbooks you find to show you've been there. Most letterboxers will urge you to create a hand-carved stamp rather than a store-bought one because we enjoy seeing what others can create. No artistic talent necessary! Carving a stamp is surprisingly quick and easy to do with the right guidance and tools, and our stamp carving tutorial is an excellent place to get started. Many first-time letterboxers, too eager to get out and start finding letterboxes before carving a signature stamp, will use their thumbprint. Many experienced letterboxers who forget to bring their signature stamp have been known to use this method as well!

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Do I need a trail name?


Trail names are optional, though a growing number of letterboxers are adopting them. Part of it is just for fun, though others have made the argument that for personal safety and security, it's best not to be too loose with your real name. If you choose to go with a trail name, though, consider that it might follow you around for a long, long time to come. Don't select one you may regret later.

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What's the difference between a trail name and an alias?


A trail name is the normal name that other letterboxers will know you as. An alias is like a secret identity—another trail name that nobody knows is you. Letterboxing is a very secretive hobby so it's not surprising the some letterboxers have adopted one or more aliases for any number of reasons. Read SpringChick's An Alias Among Us for more details about aliases and reasons you may or may not want to choose one for yourself.

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What kind of logbook should I use?


New letterboxers always have a barrage of questions about logbooks. What size should they be? What should go in them? In a nutshell, it comes down to what you want to do. Every letterboxer has their own way of doing logbooks. Some people stamp finds onto index cards that can be sorted and easily carried. Others create diary-like journals where they paste in pictures of the hike or the clue itself along with information about the date and time, who they hiked with, or any other notes they care to take. For less-ambitious folks out there, they might only include the stamp image with the name of the box and the date it was found.

Those who use index cards generally save them in a photo album. You can add, remove, or rearrange pages from some types of photo album. Obviously, you can insert photos from the adventures right alongside the cards with the stamp images. This method has the benefit that you're not carrying the entire logbook with you on the trail, which means you're not carrying as much, and if it starts raining or you fall in a creek only the cards you have along get wet. On the downside, if you run into another letterboxer on the trail, you won't have your logbook along to show off. You could keep it in the car, of course.

Others prefer to use an heirloom-quality book of some sort, perhaps leather-bound. A collection of unique hand-carved stamp images can be very impressive when collected in a fine volume. The fact that the book has been carried over many trails just adds to its character.

If there's one thing most letterboxers can agree on when it comes to logbooks, it's to use one with blank, white pages. Lined pages look tacky—lines are for writing between, not for stamping on—and stamp images show up best on white pages. Also, if you're into making your own paper, you might reconsider for your logbook. Home-made paper tends to be grainy and doesn't stamp very well. Outside of that, it's really up to you and your imagination!

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Where can I acquire letterboxing supplies?


Rubber stamp stores have many of the supplies letterboxers will need—especially the ink pads. Carving supplies can be more challenging to find since most rubber stamp stores actually expect you to buy rubber stamps rather than provide supplies to carve your own, though they usually have something for carving. Arts and crafts stores such as Michael's carry lots of useful supplies, though the employees that work there may not be familiar with carving tools! The carving blocks and carving tools, contrary to what you might think, are not located in the stamp aisle. Most likely, you'll find carving materials in the same area where you'll find stencils and calligraphy items. Don't ask why—nobody has a good answer for that and it may rank as one of the world's most enduring mysteries.

You can also find online sources at great prices such as MisterArt.com. One low-cost alternative many letterboxers prefer to use for carving blocks is PZ Kut, which can be purchased at Stampeaz.

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Why do we place letterboxes?


Inky Jedi's Do you plant letterboxes? says it all!

Help Home > Getting Started


Can we change or replace our signature stamp once we start?


Of course! Sometimes old stamps wear out and need replacement, but more often than not, people just like to shake things up a bit. Some people have created seasonal signature stamps, others have different sizes for different sized logbooks, others have several they carry around and use the one they feel best fits the letterbox, and still others like to change their signature stamp after every 100 finds or some other criteria of their choice. Others have replaced old, store-bought stamps with a beautiful hand-carved stamp once their carving skills have improved, or maybe even replace old, 'rustic' signature stamps with more refined carvings after a little more experience.

You are welcome to change your signature stamp as often as necessary, for any reason that suits your moods.

Help Home > Getting Started


Can we change our trail name after we start?


Of course! While changing one's signature stamp may not cause too much confusion, however, changing your trail name can confuse people who want to contact you or list exchanges with you, so it's best to keep trail name changes to a minimum. Try to pick a good name you'll enjoy for years to come before the name 'attaches' itself to you. Once it's attached, you'll find it much more difficult to change later. You can change it, but the process becomes more difficult.

On Atlas Quest, you can change your trail name from the Account Information page. Your old trail name will stay on your profile, though, to help others identify you. If you change your trail name, none of your other information will change. You'll still have the same PFX counts, anyone who has exchanged with you will automatically have the name change reflected in their exchanges, and so forth. As far as Atlas Quest is concerned, it is like you had always been using the new name.

Additionally, you may want to announce your name change on the message boards so people who know you by your old trail name will know about the change. For a month or so, many people find it useful to include a note with their e-mails or posts indicating the name change, such as "Green Tortuga, formerly known as Green Turtle."

The point is you want to make an extra effort to let people who knew you by your old trail name be able to identify you with the new one.

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What are, and how do you do a postal letterbox?


Here's some basic information about postals in these help pages:

What is a postal letterbox?
How can I made a postal?
What do I do with my postal once I finish making it?
Should I be cautious giving my postal address to people over the Internet?
How can I sign up for a postal?
How do I find postals that are open for signups?!
Are there any general postal guidelines for anyone new to postals?

For all postal-related information, check both the Postals Category and the Postal Trackers Category.

Help Home > Getting Started


Are there other ideas for documenting one's adventures?


One idea is to get a map and put a dot in every spot where you've found a letterbox. You could use one big national (or even world) map, or you could do it state-by-state using state maps if you want. You can fold these maps up and carry them with you to events, or you can post them on a wall in your home. You can use different color dots for different years.

Help Home > Getting Started


What are Treasure Hikers?


Yep. We're all treasure hikers in the general sense of the word... each little piece of art set free in the world is a treasure to plant and find.
But there is a larger game afoot to encourage more boxes on longer distance trails and paths, and that game is Treasure Hikers!
Mama Fox, of the Little Foxes, came up with the original idea and it wasn't long before other states wanted to kick up their hiking heels as well.


Treasure Hiking is a fun way to set hiking goals while letterboxing and earn cool pathtags or other accessories!

Guidelines

Here's the only rule: One point for each mile hiked while letterboxing, either finding or planting, on hikes of 1 mile or longer round trip.

If you have a question about whether something fits the Rule, use your own judgment, bearing in mind that we are operating on the honor system when you report your points. If you need clarification, read through the Suggestions and Footnotes below. The FAQ list is found below the table showing participating states and state coordinators. If you have questions about the program in one of the participating states, please contact the coordinator for that state.

Friendly Suggestions:
Other Footnotes:
If you are interested in starting a program for your state, contact one of the state representatives listed below:
Participating stateWho to contactHow to contactStarting DatePathtags Available
Alaska KnottyKnitterDirtMonkeyAQ Mail1/29/201425, 49
CaliforniaTurtlegirl 19AQ Mail4/1/2009
ColoradoThe3DTsAQ Mail1/1/2010
ConnecticutKit Kat 61 or The QuackersAQ Mail6/1/2009 25, 50, 75, 100
FloridaMonkey Wrangler AQ Mail5/1/2009
Georgia Buttercup, Hawkeye AQ Mail3/20/2009
IllinoisNitrocatAQ Mail4/24/2009
KentuckyEeny Meany Miney MoeAQ Mail3/1/2009
MaineAiphidAQ Mail5/1/2009 25, 50, 100
MassachusettsgraywolfeAQ Mail4/25/2009 50, 100, 150, 200
Michiganthe hicks from the sticksAQ Mail5/22/2009
MinnesotaSandcastleAQ Mail7/1/2012
New HampshireBubbaloo MagooAQ Mail5/21/2009
North CarolinaThe Little Foxes, The Wolf family, Knit WitAQ Mail3/1/200925, 50, 100
Ohio Mn8X AQ Mail3/1/2009
OregonMystic DreamerAQ Mail3/20/2009
Rhode IslandSouthpawAQ Mail6/30/2012 25, 50
South CarolinaGreycrazyAQ Mail3/1/2009 25
TennesseeScouttrekkieAQ Mail3/4/200925
TexasPI JoeAQ Mail1/1/2010 25, 50, 100
Virginiawee3AQ Mail6/1/2009
WashingtonCampFireLadyAQ Mail3/20/2009

There are other similar hiking incentive programs. Contact the organizer(s) listed for the program.
Program nameWho to contactHow to contactStarting Date
New York Letterbox Hiking ChallengeJackbear, Scout, or SahalieAQ e-mail4/2/09
NC Mountain ChallengeDixie or The Little FoxesAQ e-mailin planning stages

Frequently Asked Questions
Really the program is on the honor system, and we prefer that you have fun in the spirit of the game and count your points using your own conscience.
However, some questions get asked regularly so, for the sake of consistent answers (and the sanity of the moderators), this section was added.

What if the box is a one mile hike but I get lost and travel for 3 miles? How many points would that be? Only one. No extra points for being directionally challenged.
Can I go get 10 drivebys at .1 mile each and say that's one mile? No. None of these are qualifying boxes. A qualifying box must be a one mile hike (round trip).
Can I use a bike instead of hiking? No. The program is for hiking. There's nothing stopping you from making your own Treasure Biking program, though.
Do attempts count? No. They don't count as finds and they don't count toward points in this program either. However, if you take a box with you and plant it at one mile or more you could get a point for that.
What if I start a 6 mile hike but I don't finish it? I only do 3 miles one day, then next week I go back for the farthest boxes and do 6 miles? Do I count 9 miles total or only 6? You should count 9 miles total. You did 3 miles one day and 6 miles another day. Just because the boxes happened to be in a series does not change that you hiked 9 miles total on 2 separate days to qualifying boxes.
Can my dog get a pathtag? If your dog walked the distance with you, go ahead and order one for his collar too!
What if I walk a mile to get to a driveby box? Then can I count it? No. A qualifying box is one that is one mile in hike length for anyone to get to. You can't make it a qualifying box by just setting your own starting point.
If I am in a park where there are several separate letterboxes listed and I can find them all by stringing them together to make a hike greater than one mile, can I receive pathtag points? The Treasure Hikers program was originally envisioned as a way to encourage planting boxes on longer hikes in areas where the tendency seemed to be planting drivebys. While many of the coordinators still adhere to the idea that the box you are seeking should require a hike of one mile or more, we also recognize that there are some areas where finding a mile-long trail may be a challenge. Follow your conscience. If you live in such an area, consider planting an urban box that might incorporate a mile-long "sightseeing tour" of your city in the clues.
I heard New York was doing things a little different, what's the deal with that? The New York organizers were inspired by the original Treasure Hikers group, but being New Yorkers, wanted to put a little different spin on it. A Challenge Patch is available for different miles accomplished, 25,50, 75, and 100 instead of a pathtag. They also honor attempts and maintenance, and any other excuse you have to get out and letterbox. As with the Treasure Hikers, the New York Letterbox Hiking Challenge encourages participants to challenge themselves to go on longer hikes. For more information on the NY guidelines, go to:NY Letterbox Hiking Challenge Patch Guidelines
What about partial miles? If we hike 3.5 miles round trip can we round our points up to 4? Rounding up from the halfway point is technically taking credit for mileage that you didn't really hike. Most of the members are rounding down to the whole if the fraction is under a half and rounding down to the half if it is over the halfway point. The beauty of the tracking widget designed by Wassa is that you can input exact mileage without rounding at all. If you truly want credit for that partial mile, use the widget tracker. :-) In addition, as stated above, each individual hike must be at least one mile round trip to begin with. No hiking .7 miles one week and .3 the next and adding them together for one mile.

Help Home > Getting Started


How do I add a "find" to my logbook?


Reference the Recording Finds category of the help pages for help with adding finds and attempts to your logbooks.

Help Home > Getting Started


How do I narrow down the hundreds of boxes available?


There are several ways to more effectively search through many box listings to find the ones that you would like the most:







Help Home > Getting Started


Is there a clue guide available for downtown Charlotte, NC?


Yes. After answering this question repeatedly, it just seemed to make sense to put one together. Every box listed in this guide as well as the tips to each box has been done only with permission of each planter. By listing it in Wiki, anyone can update it to keep the information more up to date (or add or remove their boxes as they see fit). You can also check the revision date of this question listing to see when the guide was last updated.

If you'd like a visual map of the guide you can see a google map here or contact The Wolf Family with a private e-mail address to have a better version sent to you.

DOWNTOWN CHARLOTTE CLUE GUIDE

This is downtown Charlotte -- the nation's second largest banking center-expect it to be busy during the week. That being said, you won't have problems with parking in these 'boxing areas. You should be able to find free parking at or near each area. If you go during rush hour in the morning or late afternoon expect the traffic to crawl. If you go on the weekends all parking is free on the streets and it is oftentimes practically vacant unless there is an event (at Panther's Stadium or the Bobcat's Arena).

ELMWOOD / PINEWOOD CEMETERY (700 W. 6th St)

Elmwood/Pinewood United
Elmwood/Pinewood History
The Confederate
GAQLBE09: Registered Nurse
What's that behind you?
Hic Jacet (Elmwood Pinewood Cemetery 2011 box)
Truly, Truly, Truly Outrageous
They Moved to North Carolina Because...
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
RAY'S SPLASH PLANET (215 N. Sycamore)

GAQLBE09: Go Green
___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
TRINITY EPISCOPAL SCHOOL (750 E. 9th St)
Park in the lot here and you can walk to the locations within a couple blocks
ALL of these boxes were created by the Middle School age children of Trinity Episcopal School

Trinity in the Park
Covered in Vines
Three Poles
You can see the school from here. You just made a loop back to the school. Now start back at the school and follow these boxes out to Alexander Street Park://

Stone Plus Crack

Pond Life
Alexander Street Park
You are now at Alexander Street Park at 916 N. Alexander St.

A.S.P. Letterbox
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
KINGS DR & TORRENCE

Evolution
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
STARTING AT THE SEVENTH STREET STATION (260 E. 7th St) *

Street parking is free on weekends. See clue for other parking recommendations. You can also just take the Lynx line here (see the clue for more information).

Center City Walking Tour

Check the links in the clue for the times that ImaginOn is open. You will need to go inside the building for the clues to the box.
The clue for the Center City Walking Tour also includes a route to the box:
Settlers' Cemetery
And when you get to the
Grande Disco location in the tour you will be able to pick up the clues for
Queen Charlotte Sophia

At the end of the Center City Walking Tour Series you can easily pick up several more boxes as part of the "tour". If you do this the one way total mileage is just over 2 miles. If you walk back to 7th Street it will be a total of 3 miles.
From Disco Chicken, continue down Tryon to Stonewall. You will be in the location for

Lynx Light Rail Line Series: Charlotte Observer

Then back to Disco Chicken and cross Tryon and you will be at The Green where you can pick up:

Moon and Stars

Cross through The Green and cross the street and go into the Convention Center.
Keep going straight through following the signs to the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
When it puts you back out on the street, go pass Buffalo Wild Wings to the front of the NASCAR Hall of Fame and you and do these boxes:

Lynx Light Rail Line Series: NASCAR Hall of Fame
Lynx Light Rail Line Series: Moonshine Runners

You end up on Stonewall at the end of these clues.
Head up Stonewall pass the NASCAR Hall of Fame to the Stonewall Station for the Lynx (you'll see the overstreet tracks ahead). You can ride this back to the 7th Street Station.
Or you can under the overstreet station and take a right on College St. And then head about 8 blocks down College St until you get to 7th St. Look right and you'll see where you started on 7th.
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
FROM THE EAST/WEST BLVD STATION STOP:

Lynx Light Rail Line Series: Historic South End
(pick up the light rail from downtown and get off at the East/West Blvd stop or see the clue for driving info.)
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
DOWNTOWN MYSTERIES
Both of these have easy access free parking//
I highly recommend trying these unique boxes

La boulangerie
Hope is the Thing with Flowers
Latta Arcade

The clue guide has all the boxes in the area listed regardless of their current status (they are only deleted from the guide if they are retired). Please check the status of the listed boxes to see if they are currently available

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Is there a clue guide available for Latta Plantation and Nature Preserve in Huntersville, NC?


Yes. After answering this question repeatedly, it just seemed to make sense to put one together. Every box listed in this guide as well as the tips to each box has been done only with permission of each planter. By listing it in Wiki, anyone can update it to keep the information more up to date (or add or remove their boxes as they see fit). You can also check the revision date of this question listing to see when the guide was last updated.

Latta Plantation and Nature Preserve Clue Guide

This Mecklenburg County Park has fishing, horseback riding, hiking trails, plantation tours, a raptor center exhibit, nature center, and gift shop. Entrance to the park is free and all the letterboxes are located in free areas. There is a fee to see the plantation and the raptor center only.

PICK UP A TRAIL MAP AT THE NATURE CENTER OR PRINT ONE HERE.

Clues are listed in order from the entrance of the preserve to the back. The boxes are also listed as in order as they are on the trail unless otherwise indicated. You will need to check the links to the clues to see if the boxes are currently available or not.

HILL TRAIL (Hiking Only)

The Three Little Pigs: Patrick

Bell *

Bell's Bodyguard!!! *

*this is actually on a Connector trail off of the Hill Trail. If you continue on this Connector trail past this box it will connect to the Cove Trail where you pick up the clues for Battle of the Blues.

COVE TRAIL
(this section of the Cove Trail is picked up from the Connector Trail that BELL and BELL'S BODYGUARD is on)

The Golden Unicorn!

Battle of the Blues

PRAIRIE TRAIL (Hiking Only)

Twin Sons of a Different Mother

Rowling's Raptors: Hedwig

SPLIT ROCK TRAIL (starting at Rowling's Raptors: Hedwig)

Where Have all the Cowboys Gone?*

*From the Piedmont Prairie trail you turn right to get this box. Then turn back and head in the other direction for the rest:

Freebird's Economic Stimulus Package

Nina Remembered

BEECHWOOD TRAIL (Hiking Only)

Bible Belt: The Dove *

*this one does not necessarily come before the other boxes. I just listed it first since you need to count benches and will have to keep track of that as you go around. I have also not told you which direction you are traveling-you'll need to figure out the clue for that

Flying Purity

Tu-Whit Tu-Who

TREASURE TREE TRAIL (Hiking Only)

3 21's

Bible Belt: O Tannenbaum *

AT THE RAPTOR CENTER
Carolina Raptor Center

SHADY TRAIL (Hiking and Horse) --Gazebo end

The Raptor Letterbox

BUZZARD ROCK TRAIL (Hiking and Horse)

Bible Belt: Noah's Ark *

*You will pass the intersection with the sign "Washwoman Rock". Remember this since you need to come back to it for the next clues

Igpay Atinlay *

*You will just past Laura's Trail. Double back to it and pick up the clues there for the next box.

Brock-Snake

How How (WOM-not listed on any online website) *
Pass Brock-Snake and head up to the large rocks. HUGE rock on the left near the trail. Behind the back of this rock, under another rock.

*I discovered this old letterbox while planting one day. It was created by Eagle Ray. When I contacted him about it, he stated that he gave it to some friends for planting and never heard about it again. He thought they hadn't planted it. That was about 3 years ago! I told him where it was but he has not listed it yet. I did give me permission to put it on this guide with the clues, though.

GAQLBE09: Harbor Lights

AUDUBON TRAIL (Hikers only)-starting at end of road (across from plantation)

Pride of Charlotte: Box #1-3

Rowling's Raptors: Errol *

*Look for the gazebo while doing Pride of Charlotte series and pick up the Errol clue from there.

I Held an Owl Call!!

PREbox...H.E.R.e.s. - A Toast!!

CATTAIL TRAIL (Hikers only)

Pride of Charlotte: Box #4-5

Rowling's Raptors: Pigwidgeon *

*Look for the owl perch in this clue while doing the Pride of Charlotte boxes.

NOT IN LATTA BUT JUST ACROSS THE STREET AT THE CHURCH

Three Little Pigs: Peter

Help Home > Getting Started


What do I do when I find a geocache?


All geocaches contain a logbook or log sheet that you can use to sign in with your trail name and the date, if you want.

Some geocaches contain trade items. If you decide to take a trade item, remember to leave an item of equal or greater value and to document the trade in the log. You can always write TNLNSL (took nothing, left nothing, signed log) if you decide not to trade.

If the box contains a trackable item, do not take the item unless you intend to leave it at a different geocache in the near future. Geocaching trackables are similar to letterboxing hitchhikers.

Whether you sign in or not, and whether you trade or not, always return the geocache to the place where you found it!

For more information, see the Geocaching 101 Tutorial at Geocaching.com.

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Is there a clue guide available for the US National White Water Center (USNWC) in Charlotte, NC?


Yes. After answering this question repeatedly, it just seemed to make sense to put one together. Every box listed in this guide as well as the tips to each box has been done only with permission of each planter. By listing it in Wiki, anyone can update it to keep the information more up to date (or add or remove their boxes as they see fit). You can also check the revision date of this question listing to see when the guide was last updated.

MAINTENANCE WAS PROVIDED TO ALL BOXES IN 3/2012
Most of these boxes were planted when the USNWC was opened. The trails have been extensively changed since then and many clues became outdated. Any clues that have not had a chance to get updated by the planters yet have additional notes after the clues. Planters are all aware of this guide and may update it as clues are updated and the additional notes are no longer needed

Clue Guide for the trails at the USNWC

This is the largest man-made white water facility in the world. You can pay money for a ton of different activities OR pay nothing more than $5 to park and have access to all the trails for free.

Important information about the trails
1. ALL of the trails are for mountain bikes. Be aware of this and get off trail when they come through.
2. BEFORE YOU LEAVE CHECK THE TRAIL STATUS HERE. When they are wet they close them to preserve the trails.
3. TRAIL MAP: $2. I have a photo of one that has the trails you need HERE.
4. Parking is $5.
5. HOURS OF OPERATION: HERE

Important information about the facility
1. DIRECTIONS: HERE
2. There is a full bar and restaurant there as well as restrooms and showers.
3. ACTIVITIES:
Whitewater rafting
Whitewater Kayaking
Flat Water Paddling
Climbing Walls
Canopy Tours
Hiking/Mountain biking trails (free)
Eco caching
Zip line
Classes/summer camp/group activities
4. EVENTS: They have regularly schedule bands that play there and other events.
5. PETS are allowed on leashes only. They are even allowed in the outdoor section of the restaurant. The restaurant even provides drinking buckets for them. :)

Important information to plan your day on the trails
I have broken the guide into THREE hiking loops. IF you want to do ALL 3 loops in one day anticipate walking approximately 8 miles and needing about 6hrs. There are moderate short up and down grades in some sections but for the most part they are fairly flat. Since each section is a loop that takes you back to the parking lot you can decide after each loop if you want to do the next without doing all the miles in one day.

NORTH MAIN BOXING LOOP (Approx. 3 miles):
Park at the front of the USNWC main entrance

Go through the USNWC main entrance. Then go to the right around the rapids to the North Trail MTB Entry.
For your first box you will be picking an end of the Figure Eight Loop to find:
Three Secrets.
After that box, go back out of the Figure Eight Loop and continue on the
North Main trail for
A Stamp in Every State: North Carolina Pug and
The Den.
After exiting out of the trails back on to the walk around the rapids, go right to the NEXT trail over for
PADDLING.
Important update to Paddling clue:
The trail you are looking for is no longer marked (the clue states the USNWC Flatwater trail). You want the UNMARKED trail BETWEEN the North Trail MTB and the Flatwater trail to the kayak launch. There is NO RED trail, but there is a trail to the left. Stick with the high road when you have a choice of trails after turning left. There is NO "bridge of stone repairs"-- it's now a wooden bridge. If you reach the canopy netting you went too far.


SOUTH MAIN BOXING LOOP (Approx. 3 miles):
Park at the far back corner of the park lot at the trail head (look for the flags marking the trailhead)

Follow the South Main trail.
As you follow the clues to
U Decide take note of the RED ARROW. You will be coming back to this point!

Now go back to that RED ARROW and take the path DOWN for
Donkey and Me.
Continue on to the Carpet Trail for
Movie Madness: Betelgeuse.

Then back on the South Main Trail and continue on for
Something Smells Fishy

LAKE LOOP BOXES (Approx. 2 miles):
Park at the far back corner of the park lot at the trail head (look for the flags marking the trailhead)

Technocow

Toilet Bowl.

DRIVEBY ON THE WAY OUT OF THE PARK (only box that is accessible without a parking fee):

SIGNS...

Help Home > Getting Started


How do I report a plant that I have made?


Plants aren't "reported" per se, but rather listed on Atlas Quest, letterboxing.org, or other websites. To list a letterbox on Atlas Quest, use the Add Letterbox option under the Letterboxes menubar option.

Help Home > Getting Started


Is there a Downtown Guide to Peoria, IL?


Downtown Peoria, IL

* Soldiers & Sailors
* Bradley Braves
* Remember 9/11
* The Spirit of Peoria
* A Portrait of Mark Twain
* St. Mary's Cathedral
* Knockin' on Freedoms Door-coming soon

All of the Downtown Peoria Boxes are with walking distance of each other. The farthest one out is the Cathedral, so that one may be best to drive to first, or at the end, your choice.

There is parking all around the streets, but there if free parking down by the Riverfront building on NE Water Street, behind the parking lot-take a left on Hamilton onto Water St.

** For a visual map of the approx. locations of these boxes are, click HERE.

Cautions/Warnings/Tips

Do NOT attempt any of these boxes during lunch time. This is when all the foot carts and breaks are taken and it gets busy!
The same applies for anytime, if there are people around, come back another time.

For those parking down by the Riverfront, the order below is best to do them in-in a row. The cathedral can be done 1st or last, doesn't matter.

The Spirit of Peoria-When retrieving/replacing, make sure no one is watching! Down by the river is a busy place, especially with the riverfront fountains up off to your right! Make sure you get the pouch with magnets tape in put back securely!

Knockin' on Freedoms Door--Coming Soon-Also on the Convention Center, in the piece of art dedicated to Moses and Lucy Pettengill's Underground Railroad home which is now the site for the Convention Center.
Make sure the Velcro and stamp are connected securely and that it is out of sight!

Bradley Braves- Simple silver Velcro'd pouch to the sign on the Convention Center. Stealth is still required!

Remember 9/11- Small black pouch Velcro'd to sign, please make sure you get it fully connected before leaving. If the Velcro is falling apart, let me know Asap, Please!

Soldiers & Sailors- "Box'' is next to the courthouse and on Main St. Extreme Stealth is required! Please make sure you put it back exactly where you found it-wedged between the 2 branches and out of sight!

A Portrait of Mark Train-During the week, especially during lunch, many employees come out to take a break/eat/smoke/ect... Be wise when retrieving/replacing the stamp in the sprinkler!

St. Mary's Cathedral-Park as close as you can to the light post to 'block' some of your view from muggles. Make sure you are not interrupting church go-ers and that you are not seen when finding/replacing this box.

*The only box with a logbook is St. Mary's Cathedral, the rest are just the stamp.

shorty

Help Home > Getting Started


What should I include in my letterboxing kit?


The Absolute Minimum


Should Also Have


Nice to Have (but not strictly required)


Looking beyond what you need for letterboxing, it's also important to prepare for where you'll be going. If the letterbox is on a long hike, you'll need water, snacks, mosquito repellant, and everything else you'd normally carry for such a hike.

Help Home > Getting Started


Is there a clue guide available for Cane Creek Park in Waxhaw, NC?


Yes. After answering this question repeatedly, it just seemed to make sense to put one together. Every box listed in this guide as well as the tips to each box has been done only with permission of each planter. By listing it in Wiki, anyone can update it to keep the information more up to date (or add or remove their boxes as they see fit). You can also check the revision date of this question listing to see when the guide was last updated.

MAINTENANCE WAS PROVIDED TO ALL BOXES IN 12/2011:
Most of these boxes were planted in 2007. The trails have been extensively changed since then and many clues became outdated. Any clues that have not had a chance to get updated by the planters yet have additional notes after the clues. Planters are all aware of this guide and may update it as clues are updated and the additional notes are no longer needed


Clue Guide for Cane Creek

This Union County park has hiking, fishing, camping, rental boats, miniature golf, climbing wall, soccer field, and horse trails (including areas to camp with horses).

Important information about the park and trails
1. There is a $4 fee to park
2. Park hours are STRICTLY enforced (they WILL lock you in if you are not out on time!!). Check the sign when you enter but they are typically 8 to 5pm.
3. You can pick up a map when you pay the parking fee or get one here.
4. Most trails are horse trails as well.

RED TRAIL starting at the entrance of the park
A little under 4 miles round trip if you get all the boxes. The trail is generally flat and clear.

NOTE: LOOK FOR A YELLOW GATE AS YOU GO ON THIS HIKE-- It's actually the "pink gate" referenced in Tomatoes are Evil

Fiesta! is a short distance down the BLUE TRAIL. Then go back to the RED TRAIL and continue on for

When is a Raven like a Writing Desk?

YELLOW TRAIL starting at the entrance of the park
About 1.5 miles round trip if you get all the boxes. The trail is clear with some hills and narrow near the water's edge sometimes.

Grandma's Flowers

After finding this box, go back to the bridge and start at that point from the bridge referenced in
Waxhaw 2007

Tea Party Guest of Honor?

From the yellow post in the hill ridge line you should be able to see the chain link fence you need in the following clue (it's NOT the chainlink fence ON the ridgeline):
Backwards?

The Dead Lemur
Note: the yellow and purple trail intersection is now marked by a yellow post on a hill line. The blazes have changed (none are now painted on the tree). It's currently the 6th yellow mounted blaze. This tree is cradling white rocks. Count the referenced paces from this tree.

LOT #4
Less than a mile roundtrip

NOTE: LOOK FOR THE TRAIL BEHIND THE BASEBALL FIELD -- it's referenced in Tomatoes are Evil

The Path Home

BOAT LAUNCH (driveby)

Keep America Green

TRAILS STARTING AT THE REST AREA AT THE END OF THE ROAD INTO THE PARK
About 3 miles round trip of you get all the boxes-- this includes looping back to start again for one of them

Mother & Son + The Waxhaws
You will do this box and loop back to the start for the rest so you can do it first and come back or last and come back.

You will go a little ways up the YELLOW TRAIL to get this box:
Attack of the Mosquitoes!

Then return back to RED TRAIL and continue on to the ORANGE TRAIL. You will go up the ORANGE TRAIL to get this series:
The Perfect Cup of Tea

Then return back to the RED TRAIL and continue on
you will then look at the clues for Determined Smail and pick them up where I have indicated you need to if you are using the clue guide.

Help Home > Getting Started


How do you agree to the Waiver of Responsibility and Disclaimer?


If you follow clues for any box listed on Atlas Quest, you are implicitly agreeing to the Waiver of Responsibility and Disclaimer. There is no button to click to formally agree to it--let's face it, most people click "Agree" to just about anything without reading it anyhow. We don't want to waste your time like that, but if you do follow any clues to boxes listed on Atlas Quest, you've implicitly agreed to them whether you wanted to or not!

Help Home > Getting Started


Who do I report to if there is no letterbox at the site designated?


Besides recording finds, you can also record attempts on a letterbox if you believe that the box is missing. Use the same same link as you would for Recording a Find--it does double duty for attempts as well. AQ will give you the option to mark the box as a find or an attempt, and it'll give you space to leave a comment that will be sent to the owner and all planters of the box. If you do leave a comment, you'll usually have the option to post it publicly as well where a wider audience can see it.

Help Home > Getting Started


I got bit by something that caused my arm to burn—how can I comment on hazards at the site?


Contact the owner of the letterbox if you have concerns about the safety of the letterbox. You can also post a public comment you record your find to warn others of any hazards, although the owner may choose to not approve your comment or delete it.

Help Home > Getting Started


How do I add a comment to to a specific letterbox I have found?


Use the 'Record Find' button. When you report a find or an attempt, Atlas Quest gives you the opportunity to leave a comment. If you don't want to actually record your find or attempt, there is an N/A option you can select but still leave a comment.

Help Home > Getting Started


How do I get my letterbox to appear on the location page?


It shows up automatically immediately upon listing your letterbox. If you aren't seeing it, it's because the search you are running does not match your letterbox. Click the "Edit Search" link in the upper-right corner of the search results page and take a close look at every single option that's checked. One of those options, somewhere, is suppressing your result.

The most common options that would hide your letterbox is if the option to "Hide my plants" is selected. Obviously, you won't see your own plants if that is selected. If you've recorded a "find" on it as well, you won't see it if the option to "Hide my finds" is selected.

If you've listed a letterbox but haven't posted clues for it yet, your box will not show up if the "Clued Box" attribute is checked.

If you're absolutely convinced that none of your search options should be hiding your box, the problem might be in the location you listed for the letterbox. The more specific your location, the more accurately it will show up in the search results. A box "somewhere in New York City" is pretty vague--New York City is a very large city! Unless you narrow down the location of your box, AQ will sort it a lot further down the list of search results than you might otherwise expect to find it. If you created a custom location, be sure to set the radius of the location accurately. The bigger the radius, the less AQ knows about the box's location, and the lower down in the search results you'll find your box. More than once people have asked why their box wasn't showing up in a certain search just to find out it was showing up -- but on page 3 of the search results because the location they listed for the box was so vague.

Help Home > Getting Started