Letterboxing a fun way to spend time with family

The first time I went letterboxing was last summer. We were camping with all of my family. My aunt, my two cousins, my little sister and I got in the car and we drove to a beach. We followed the directions to find the letterbox off of my aunt’s phone. We found the letterbox in a hole at the bottom of a tree. It was a memorable moment and I wanted to find more. After we found the first one we tried to do one more letterbox, but we didn’t find anything. We enjoyed the park though.

Letterboxing is very much like geocaching except that you don’t need a GPS. You do need these things: 1. A notebook to stamp the stamps you find; 2. Your personal stamp to stamp the letterbox logbook; 3. An inkpad to stamp with; and 4. letterbox directions. You can get directions at www.letterboxing.com. You can make yourself an account and then you will be able to sign in to your account. It is absolutely free and very fun. I recommend letterboxing because it is a great opportunity to spend quality time with your family.

You are probably thinking to yourself, “What exactly is a letterbox?” Well, a letterbox is a box with a logbook full of other people’s signatures and stamps. A letterbox is usually dedicated to someone who has passed away or placed in a place with some sort of legend, or sometimes placed just for fun. You can you choose your own personal stamp. My stamp is like a postcard stamp and it says, “See you soon.” My sister’s personal stamp is a heart. You also need your own personal logbook to collect stamps. Sometimes people don’t know what a letterbox is and then they find one and they throw it away, not realizing what they found.

Once we went to Sugarloaf Mountain in Marquette and we found a letterbox wedged in a rock. We knew it was there because we found the directions at www.letterboxing.com. We can’t remember who put it there, but we found it. It was really hard to find because we kept getting the directions wrong. We finally got a correct compass on my dad’s phone and then we used it to find it. It took a while to find it in the rocks, but we finally found it. It was in a plastic baggy and inside was a little box with all of the needed letterboxing supplies: a logbook; a stamp; and an inkpad, which is optional if you are putting out a letterbox. We stamped our books and we signed their logbook with our trail names. I’ll give you one hint what my trail name is: O.Otter. The O stands for a color… I bet you’ll never guess.

It would be cool to find more hidden letterboxes. I plan to look for them when we travel. There are so many letterboxes in Marquette and other places that will never be found if you don’t do it too. Think about all those poor unfound letterboxes sitting around waiting for you to find them. Now get out there and find some letterboxes!

Editor’s note: Sophia Capuana is 10 years old and in the fifth grade at Father Marquette Elementary School. She loves to swim and hopes to someday compete in the Olympics.