Last summer my husband and I went to visit my dad/stepmom in Cleveland, Ohio. We were trying to think of something fun and different to do when my dad mentioned that we should try Letterboxing. Letterboxing? What is that? He let me know it is when you have a set of clues and search for the hidden treasure (usually a book where you place your own personal stamp). Huh? For a more accurate definition, I sought out Letterboxing.org for answers. Basically, letterboxing is an intriguing mix of treasure hunting, art, navigation, and exploring interesting, scenic, and sometimes remote places. The idea is someone hides a waterproof box somewhere (in a beautiful, interesting or remote location) containing at least a logbook and a carved rubber stamp, and sometimes other goodies. The hider then writes directions to the box, which can be straightforward, cryptic or any degree in between. Often the clues involve map coordinates or compass bearings from landmarks, but they don't have to. Once the clues are written, hunters in possession of the clues attempt to find the box. In addition to the clues and any maps or tools needed to solve it, the hunter should carry at least a pencil, his personal rubber stamp, an inkpad, and his personal logbook. Once the hunter successfully deciphers each clue and finds the box, he stamps the logbook in the box with his personal stamp, and stamps his personal logbook with the box's stamp. The box's logbook keeps a record of all its visitors, and the hunters keep a record of all the boxes they have found, in their personal logbooks. Well, after figuring out what it was all about, my family and I went out on a hunt for this treasure and it was FUN! We went to a beautiful park and had a little treasure hunt. We hiked around, stopped at the sites, laughed as we attempted to follow the directions and then happily found the treasure. It was a great way to get outside with family and DO something (for FREE!) not to mention the scenery was lovely. So this day inspired me to look up Hamilton County, Indiana locations and I discovered that we have 14 hidden boxes. For more details (and to take your family out for an unforgettable day of treasure hunting) go to Letterboxing.org.
On the Hunt for Hidden Treasures
Monday, July 20, 2009 by Hamilton County Tourism Staff