Friday, July 30, 2010

Cecret Lake

Date Placed: July 30, 2010
Letterbox: Traditional
Carver: GreenJello
Planters: GreenJello and Teancum
Location: Albion Basin Campground, Little Cottonwood Canyon, Salt Lake, Utah
Distance: 1.5 miles round trip
Status: Active

At the top of Little Cottonwood Canyon is a lovely little campground called Albion Basin. And from that campground is a lovely little hiking trail that leads you to Cecret Lake (pronounced like "secret"). If you hike in the earlier morning or earlier evening, you will most likely see moose on the trail. (Be wary! They are beautiful, but dangerous. Keep your distance!) The Albion Basin is also known for its amazing display of wildflowers in the spring (usually late June/early July) and autumn leaves in the fall (September/October).

Directions: Drive up Little Cottonwood Canyon up to the very top. The paved section of the road ends after you reach Alta. Continue up the dirt road to the very top, where you will find a parking area adjacent to the campground area. Park there. Head to the west side of the campground to find the trail. It's a fairly heavily used trail, so you shouldn't have much difficulty finding it. The trail will take you through the campground and in a southernly direction towards the lake.

Wildflowers-- When you reach the wildflowers information sign, head on the social trail directly to the west of the sign that leads to the giant split boulder. Wildflowers are hiding under the south side near the split.

Moose-- From the wildlife information sign, head on the social trail west of the sign about 100-ish steps to a large, flat rock on your right. It's next to a scrawny pine tree. Check carefully underneath to find a moose.

Shh! It's A Cecret!-- When you reach the lake, head to the left of the "No Swimming" sign less than 10 steps. To your left will be a large, long flattish rock. Look underneath.

Notes: This canyon is a watershed. No dogs allowed! Because of the high elevation, be aware that this trail may not be open until late June (typical), or even July (if there's been heavy snowfall in the winter). It can close as early as September, depending (again) on snowfall.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Stewart Cascades Trail

Date Placed: July 25, 2010
Letterbox: Traditional
Carvers: Woody Clowns (Sticky Geraniums) and GreenJello (Stewart Falls)
Planters: GreenJello and Teancum
Location: Stewart Cascades Trail, Aspen Grove, Alpine Loop, Utah, Utah
Distance: 4 miles round trip
Status: Active (only the Sticky Geraniums... the Stewart Falls box is missing!)

The Stewart Cascades Trail is one of the loveliest hikes in Utah. Your destination is Stewart Falls, one of the most scenic and photogenic waterfalls in northern Utah. It falls in two tiers, and is over 200 feet tall. It is an easy-to-moderate hike through a beautiful forest on the east side of Mount Timpanogos.

The trail is well-marked and easy to follow. The descent from the ridge/overlook area down to the base of the falls is quite steep (young ones should be held in check at that point) but this is a great family hike. Summer is a good time to make the trek, and fall is even better because the colored leaves are magnificent!

Directions: From I-15, take the Orem 800 North exit (#272). Head east and follow all the way to the mountains. When the road splits at the end, head to the left and start up Provo Canyon. Approximately 7 miles up, turn left at the Sundance turnoff. Continue on the Alpine Loop Road for about 6 miles, where there will be a fee station. (If you have a National Parks Pass, you can use that in lieu of the normal day use fee.) The parking area just past the fee station is where you will find the trailhead. Start to the right of the bathrooms, up the "stairs" and straight up the path to the brown trail marker that will point you in the right direction.

After you've taken [The Answer To Life, The Universe And Everything] steps from the trail marker, look to your left for a chunk of pink cement next to the trail. You will find some hidden Sticky Geraniums behind it, under some rocks. Please be very discreet and rehide EXTREMELY WELL, as this is a hugely popular hiking trail. (Sticky Geraniums are a plentiful wildflower found along the bottom part of this trail, as well as all over Mount Timpanogos. Keep an eye out for them as you hike!) Thanks to Woody clowns for this lovely stamp!

Continue on the trail to the falls. You will pass a water tank, gorgeous scenery, plenty of stinging nettle (know how to identify it so you can avoid it!), rock slides.... and then you will reach the waterfall overlook. Find the 4-ish foot tall wooden trail marker at the overlook area. Head the Sundance way, about 10-12 steps. There will be a pile of large rocks to your left. Under the large flat rock will be a Stewart stamp. Again, please be discreet and rehide well!

If you want to get to the base of the falls (and of course you do!), just keep heading down the Sundance way along the switchbacks.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

100 Degrees

Date Placed: July 18, 2010
Letterbox: Traditional
Carver: Teancum
Planters: Teancum and GreenJello
Location: Herriman Splash Pad, 14070 South Rosecrest Road, Herriman, Salt Lake, Utah
Status: Active

The first half of 2010 is the hottest on record for the United States. Salt Lake City and the surrounding areas are no exception to this... unseasonably warm weather has us hitting 100 degree temperatures ahead of schedule this summer.

It's time to go cool off!

Directions: From Bangerter Highway, head west at the 13400 South intersection. Take a left on Rosecrest Road (5600 West). Follow the road south, driving past the park to your right. The Splash Pad will soon be on your left.

Find the fire hydrant on the west side of the park. Start walking north. At about 25 steps, follow the winding cement snake 5 steps. A large black boulder will be to your right. Look under it midway where it meets the grey boulder it sits upon. A smaller rock hides what you seek.

Be sure to replace the smaller rock back in tightly and cover with bark so that the landscapers won't accidentally find it!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Hippo Hitchhiker

Date Placed: July 17, 2010
Letterbox: Hitchhiker
Carver: GreenJello
Planter: GreenJello

This hippo is ready to see more of the world! Anyone have room for a hippo in their letterboxing bag?

Known Stops:
1. Herriman, Utah (started)
2. Draper, Utah
3. Black Forest, Colorado
4. Dryden, New York

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Hobo Hitchhiker #4

Date Placed: July 15, 2010
Letterbox: Hitchhiker
Carver: GreenJello
Planter: GreenJello

This guy is traveling around these parts. Maybe he'll hitch a ride with you somewhere.

Known Stops:
1. Salt Lake City, Utah (started)
2. East Canyon, Utah
3. Black Forest, Colorado

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Lucky Duck Flea

Date Placed: July 10, 2010
Letterbox: Flea
Carver: GreenJello
Planter: GreenJello

You know you wanna get lucky and have the Lucky Duck show up in your things at a gathering, or surprise you in a letterbox!

Known Stops:
1. Lehi, Utah (started)