There it was, buried deep beneath my cranial masses-
How silly of me to forget this fun pastime! Some may be familiar with this activity while others are scratching their noodles....
So a brief description:
Letterboxing is an international way to do outdoor "treasure" hunts. My family has done several of these, and have had a blast doing them. Someone, who is good at making up clues and hiding their "box" will list their info on the site for you to copy off and then, hopefully find. For example: Last winter when we knew we would be visiting certain areas of Florida-we went to letterboxing.org and did a box search in those towns. If someone has a box available to find, they have the directions to the site, the clues, and the maintained box hidden somewhere around there. We found 4 or 5 in just the week we had there and it was fun!
So what do you do?
Our family thought up a name for us, found a rubber stamp (yes, the kind JoAnns and Michaels sell), packed it up in a ziplock with a small pad of ink (again-can be found at J or M or any craft store), a pen, some baby wipes (for cleaning off the stamp-those travel packs work great for this), some paper towel (to dry the stamp and or clean hands), a notebook (any type will do-smallish is better. I found blank books at our state's convention, stamped it up all nice and pretty on the outside, and there is where we place all our box stamp finds)and an extra ziplock (because do not get to them often enough-we would be nice and replace a bag that was damaged to keep the box nice and dry). I also print off all the box clues for the area we will be exploring and tuck that inside too. A couple of google maps of the area is not a bad idea either-but we have one of those GPS things-so usually, I just punch in the addy and away we go.
Oh, one other very helpful hint: each box maintainer has their name and email listed-do yourself and your kids a huge favor: email to be sure the box is still there. Nothing worse than spinning in circles for hours knowing you have the clues figured out right-only to discover the box went missing or is no longer available. Ok, two....if it looks like it is in a very wooded area-I would save that one for early-mid spring or mid-late fall. It will cut down on the "squeeto" bites, ticks and possibility of poison ivy/oak/sumac ruining the whole experience.
Once you find the box, you take out their note pad and stamp your image and leave your name, city and state and date on it...if room-a little note too! Then you put their stamp into your book along with the city/state, date and the box name (to avoid going thru the hunt again-unless it was so fun, you feel it necessary to do so). You neatly repack their stuff, and replace it as you found it for the next hunter to find.
The site is loaded with info, so start with the "Getting Started" icon and go from there. If you so enjoy this activity-perhaps you could start a box of your own.
Oh, I would start locally. We had 3 right by me and I live in a smallish town-so you just never know.
Hope you are able to give this a try!