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Georgia Letterboxes

Placed by

Daughter of the Old Dominion

OndBay AmpSway - 2 boxes
Reed Bingham State Park Boxes – 3 boxes
The State Fish
The State Bird
The State Flower
Okefenokee Swamp Boxes – 2 boxes
The State ‘Possum
A Swamp Insect
Langdale Park Boxes – 2 boxes
The Devil Went Down to Georgia
The State Tree

OndBay AmpSway

Twiggs County, Georgia
Nearest city: Macon
Number of boxes: 2
Planted by Daughter of the Old Dominion and Shades
March 29, 2003

These are mini-boxes with mini-logs. Bring your mini-stamps and your own stamp pad.

This is not a mystery box but I pig-latinized the name of the place in case the feds are not keen on letterboxes and in case they do random online searches for items related to their place.

BRING INSECT REPELLANT AND WEAR LONG SLEEVES AND LONG PANTS. I cannot emphasize this too strongly. We visited this place after a rainy week in Georgia and could not enjoy it much because of the mosquitoes. In fact, I feel I must apologize to all you hardy hikers. The walks to the boxes are really short. The bugs chased us out! If you want to enjoy the place more than we did, the trails are supposedly easy walking and mostly level with a few gentle slopes. The trail named after an animal was partially underwater when we were there but, after all, it is an AmpSway! There are latrines in the animal trail parking lot.

Location of Place: From Macon, take Interstate 16 southeast to the Highway 23 (Cochran Short Route) exit and follow Highway 23 for 3.8 miles south. You will see a sign for Twigg County and you will see mile marker 20. You will then see a sign for OndBay AmpSway pointing toward what appears to be a narrow gravel driveway on the left. Believe it or not, that's it! The parking lot for the second box in just a short distance farther south, on the right. Again, it's just a narrow gravel driveway.

Location of Boxes:

Box 1. This is on the trail named after a plant. You will pass trail signs with pictures of hikers. When you reach the trail sign with words, take a right. In a few steps, you will see another symbol sign of one hiker. From that sign, take 72 steps of a length typical for a 5'3" female. On the left of the path you will see a tree with a low hole. It is the only tree with that characteristic within the 72-step range. Standing at that tree, find 210 degrees on the compass. Walk 32 steps into the woods. You will come upon an old 3-in-1 tree that has only one trunk and two stumps. Your treasure is in the left stump. See, wasn't that an easy walk!

Box 2. You have to move your car to the next parking lot. This box is on the trail named after an animal. Walk on the trail, stopping when it makes a hard right. Back up a few steps and take a bearing of South. When we were there, this southern area looked like it could have been a path at one time. Walk about 40 steps south. Look southeast and at about 50 yards in the distance you will see an overturned tree with its huge root ball exposed. Make your way to that tree. Standing on the trunk, look at the root ball. At the 1 o'clock position, you will see the treasure affixed to the roots. You do not have to dismantle the device to remove the box, it will slip out of the holder.

Having found your two treasures, you can either continue your hike on the trails or return to your car and count your mosquito bites.

These boxes are orphans since I don't live in the area and was only in Macon for a wedding. If you find either of these boxes, I would appreciate it if you would let me know their condition. You can contact me by email:daughteroftheolddominion at yahoo.com

Reed Bingham State Park Boxes
Cook County, Georgia
Nearest City: Adel
Number of Boxes: 3 miniboxes. Bring stamp pad.
Placed by Daughter of the Old Dominion on May 20, 2003.
Dogs OK
Clues easy, mostly flat terrain. Some mud on paths.
Plan about 2 hours for the hike.
$2.00 parking fee. Wednesdays are free.
Bring bug spray and a hat. The bugs buzzing around my head were very annoying.

Directions to park: From US 75, take exit 39 west on Rt. 37 for about 6 miles. Follow the signs. For information about this park, visit: Georgia State Parks

These boxes commemorate three state symbols. Click on the link for more information about Georgia's State Symbols.

Directions to boxes: Pick up the trail map at the information center when you enter the park. You can pay the parking fee there, too. Follow the road to the end for the parking lot for the trails.

Box 1. The State Fish

Pursuit of this fish is widely popular in the picturesque fishing waters in Georgia. It was designated the official State Fish in 1970.

From the parking lot, go through the stone pillars telling you “Foot Traffic Only”. At the fork, take the Upland Loop. At the next intersection, take the Little River Trail. You will be happy to be out of the mud and onto a boardwalk. At the next fork, take a break from the hike by going north for a view of the river. Go east to continue on trail. Eventually the boardwalk ends. Now we need to gauge your step. On the downhill slant of the last portion of boardwalk, start counting your steps. My 15th step is on the dirt. Then I took 26 steps to reach a tree that is practically touching the path on the right. Then I took 43 steps and was right between a tree on the left and a tree on the right. Next to the tree on the right, at about the 44th step, is another tree. Stand between these trees. Go six steps to a mossy tree. Stand in back of the tree. Go straight ahead about 9 steps to an almost identical tree. Go seven steps, at a bearing of 120 degrees, to a crooked log. At the hollow end is the State Fish.

Box 2. The State Bird.

In 1935 this bird was first chosen as the Georgia State Bird by official proclamation but it wasn’t until 1970 that the state legislature designated it as the official State Bird. It is common throughout the eastern U.S., north to Canada and west to the Rockies. It migrates north in summer and spends winters in the south.

Continue on the trail. It eventually meets with the Birdwalk. Pass the trail shelter and a pond. You’ll continue slightly uphill, into a section of magnolias, which are noticeable because we haven’t seen many of them so far on our walk. You’ll start going slightly downhill at the place where a tree touches the path. You’ll go 17 steps to where two thin magnolias are entwined. You’ve gone too far if you come upon two stumps of posts that look like they’ve been used lately for nailing practice about eight feet off the trail on the left. From the entwined magnolias, look left and go uphill 14 steps. You should reach a one-foot diameter magnolia right next to a two-inch diameter magnolia. One tree is hollow. Find the State Bird inside.

Box 3. The State Flower.

This flower is excessively thorny and the flower is waxy white with a large golden center. It blooms in early spring. It was named the State floral emblem in 1916.

Continue on the Birdwalk. Turn right on the Upland Loop. You’ll go through several “s” turns. On the left, you’ll pass a five-in-one tree of which only three trunks are still standing. On the right of the path, you’ll come to a remarkably dense growth of trees - there are seven trees (some doubles) growing in about a one square yard area. Position yourself on the path so that this dense growth is at the 12 o’clock position. At 10 o’clock, you’ll see a mossy dead holey tree. Close to it you’ll see a huge double tree. Go along the path until the double tree is at the 12 o’clock position. At 11 o’clock is a four foot holey stump. The State Flower is inside.

To get back to the parking lot, you can either retrace your steps to the Birdwalk and follow the signs to the parking lot or continue on the Upland Loop.

If you find these boxes, please let me know by writing to me at daughteroftheolddominion@yahoo.com

Okefenokee Swamp Boxes
Ware County, Georgia
Nearest City: Waycross
Number of Boxes: 2 miniboxes. Bring stamp pad.
Placed by Daughter of the Old Dominion and the Georgia Peaches on May 18, 2003.

Clues: Easy. These are drive-by boxes. The difficult part will be acting invisible or having the patience to wait until no one is around to observe you poking in the dirt and bushes.

There are three entrances to the Okefenokee Swamp - for these boxes you want the North entrance. There is a hefty admission fee if you want to go beyond the visitor center/gift shop but these boxes are planted in a location before you have to pay the fee so if you’ve already explored the swamp and don’t want to do it again today, you can still find the boxes for the price of the gas it took you to drive there and any souvenirs that you might buy. If you do want to make a day of it, pay the admission and explore the swamp on the boardwalks, visit the serpentarium and animal habitats, enjoy the live reptile presentations, and take the tram tour. Bring a picnic or eat at the little cafe there. BRING BUG SPRAY.

Directions to Park: Located southeast of Waycross on US 1 and 23 at Rt. 177. Or from US 82, go south on 177, across US 1 and 23 into the park. There are signs.

Box 1. The State ‘Possum

This cartoon swamp creature, the most famous fictional resident of the Okefenokee Swamp, is noted for his wry comments on politics and philosophy. You will see him and his friends throughout the park. He was voted State ‘Possum in 1992. Follow the link for information about other Georgia State symbols.

On the east side of the parking lot, before the visitor center, is an arch leading to the Camellia Gardens. I missed the blooming season but it was probably fantastic. Cross the foot bridge and walk in a southerly direction until you come upon a second bridge. Continue in the same direction for 12 steps to a stump. You are visible from the parking lot, so be careful here, although on the Sunday I was there, there weren’t many cars so it wasn’t a problem for me.

There is a cavity under the stump. You don't want that. Find a stick and poke in the dirt under the northernmost root. The State ‘Possum is in a minibox.

It is convenient to take this box to your car to stamp in. Replace carefully.

Box 2. A Swamp Insect

This is not the state insect but it was everywhere we looked. My daughter says she has heard it called a mosquito hawk. Where I’m from we call it something else.

Find the picnic and restroom pavilion. Proceed past the cooker at the back to the last post surrounding the air conditioning units. With your back to the post, look straight ahead (260 degrees for those of you with a compass) and you will see a slight path into the woods. The path was there in late May 2003 but who knows how long it will be there because it doesn’t go anywhere. About 10 feet into the woods, at the second tree you come to on your right, under dead saw palmetto fronds, is the Swamp Insect. This is a slightly larger box, but is still smaller than the letterboxing norm. You can take this to the picnic area to stamp in. There were no picnickers when I was there so it was easy to plant this box. Hopefully, you will have the same luck.

If you find these boxes, please let me know by writing to me at daughteroftheolddominion@yahoo.com

Langdale Park Boxes
Lowndes County, Georgia
Nearest City: Valdosta
Number of Boxes: 2 Bring stamp pad for Box 2.
Placed by Daughter of the Old Dominion on May 20, 2003.
Dogs OK.
Clues: Easy clues. Plan at least an hour for the walk. Bug spray is essential.

Directions to park: From I75, take exit 22 east on Rt. 41. Start slowing down at mile marker 22. The entrance is on the right. The sign is obscured by plants until the last second so you might end up going right by it and having to make a U-turn. Take the park road to the turn around at the end, park in the first picnic area on the right after the boat ramp.

Box 1. The Devil Went Down to Georgia

In the song, Johnny had to outplay the devil to win the golden fiddle. You just have to find it.

From the picnic area, find the sign “Trail B 3200 ft”. Follow this serpentine path which is bordered by saw palmettos. Not even 10 minutes along trail, the path curves to the left and seems to end in a wide gully and the saw palmetto border is way back there on the edge of the gully. You can’t find where the trail picks up because a fallen tree blocks where the path should logically go. Look along the east side of the gully at the palmetto line for an 8-foot tree stump. Inside the stump is the gold fiddle.

Box 2. The State Tree

This tree flourishes along the coastal plains and on the islands where the first settlers made their homes. There are some of these trees in the park. It was adopted in 1937 as the official State Tree. Follow the link for more information about Georgia State Symbols.

You can leave the car where it is and walk back to the turn around. Read the tree signs along the way. At the turn around, on the right, is an unnamed path that leads down into a gully and back up again. The path follows the river on its left. You will come upon a sign that tells you that you are on Trail H. Leave the river and follow the grassy path. It comes to a wide path with wheel ruts. You’ll come to four trees that fell across the path at the same spot. Follow the biggest one to the breaking point. Inside the log is the State Tree. I know that the hiding place is not actually the state tree, but it was a good hiding place so I used it. After stamping in and rehiding box, return to the trail and continue walking in the same direction. You will come to the park road.

If you find these boxes, please let me know by writing to me at daughteroftheolddominion@yahoo.com