Hawk's View Overlook LbNA # 11642 (ARCHIVED)
|Placed Date||Oct 16 2004|
Terrain of hike: Lots of hills and rocky paths
Distance of hike: 2 miles (one-way)
Difficulty: Moderate (bring water)
BYOI&P (Bring your own ink and a pen/pencil)
Most hikes in Birmingham are centered around 1 of the 3 things that put Birmingham on the map - iron, coal, or limestone. This letterbox is placed at Ruffner Mountain Nature Center - the site of an old iron mine that has been converted into a nature preserve. To find the letterbox, you must hike to Hawk's View Overlook. The nature center opens at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday thru Saturday and 1:00 p.m. on Sunday, but the trails can still be hiked before the time the gates and the nature center officially open. If you vist when the nature center is open, pick up a trail map to help you along the way. If you visit when the nature center is closed, study the map at the pavillion at then start down the quarry trail, the way to Hawk's View Overlook is well-marked on the trailheads along the Quarry Trail.
As you approach Hawk's View Overlook, take some time to stop at the Cambrian Overlook for a nice view onto the old quarry. Once you reach Hawk's View Overlook you will notice a nice view of the Birmingham skyline. Once a month, the Center hosts a sunset wine and cheese tasting event at Hawk's View Overlook and once a year on July 4th, the Center offers a guided nightime hike to observe Birmingham's annual fireworks show over downtown.
After enjoying the view of Hawk's View Overlook, turn around to see a trailhead indicating the direction to Sloss Peak. Follow the trail toward Sloss Peak until you come to a fork; bear left approximately 15 paces up hill from the fork. When you stop, there will be a tall tree directly to your right (barely off the trail). From this tree, take a reading of 95 degrees (or simply look forward-left) and spot an area of 4 trees. Upon further study of the trees you will see that the two middle trees is actually a double tree. One of the trees grows straight up, the other grows out to the left. The box is placed in the hollow base of this double tree. When I planted this box I covered it completely with leaves and sticks; please be sure to take extra precaution when uncovering.
This was the first stamp I carved, so please be aware that this is probably not the best quality stamp you will ever find. Nevertheless, it is a beautiful hike through a very well-maintained urban nature preserve.