Once upon a time, there were three little Weinkaufs wandering around a wide, wondrous wilderness; where exceptional woodland creatures dwelled; where awesome spectacles of nature occurred every season. In summer months, the foliage of the trees would produce such unfathomable amounts of shade, that even in the hottest months, in the deepest parts of the forest the temperature would be a mere 60 degrees. In the autumn months the trees would exchange their shade producing green leaves for hues most spectacular. In the winter months, the ice storms would produce icicles almost a dozen feet long…In some places even longer. But in the spring, Ah… this was their favorite time—For this was the time, the natural flowers would bloom; the trees would rouse from their sleepiness; the waters flowed more quickly. As the snow melted so did their hearts—into a new beginning.
It was at this season that our story begins in an old man’s home, which was neither a house nor a cabin, but a cave. The three Weinkaufs had, as they always had hoped to have every year, a picnic; in a quaint little spot under the tree just step off the path near a sheltered house.
It was a special occasion this day, see, it had been years since the sons were together and even rarer was the opportunity to spend some time with their mother alone. Each had grow and moved on into the world, but the influences of their mother remained within them. They had visited this old man’s home several times before, when they were young, when they were grown and even with their own families. Nevertheless, this time was a special time, for unlike all the other times, they were going to do something very unusual. Never before had they attempted to do this and it would take time, effort and cunning. For here they were going to hide the secret of their love for their mother in a box and tuck it away in an obscure place. Leaving only hints to its whereabouts, so that only the most cunning, cautious, gentle creatures (not much unlike themselves) would be able to find it and secure its dream of remembrance, dedication, and love.
So with a belly full of food, they took an azimuth of 5 dozen degrees from the corral fence near the sheltered house… to a bearing of ENE. They paced a few hundred yards and found the entrance to the “Upper Falls” of the forest. Near the first bridge was a plaque indicating that this area was Grandma Gatewoods favorite path. They thought to themselves, If Grandma can do this, we sure can. Much to their surprise their journey was not with out hazards. For just past the second bridge, they found themselves confronted with the bathing pool of Beelzebub. Swirling and churning, boiling and foaming; it drew upon their hearts to dive in… But they were resolute in their goal and nothing as simple as a fresh spring water drink to their somewhat parched throats would deter them. Onward they journeyed…deeper, deeper into the woods.
As they followed the path, which crossed and re-crossed the winding creek, their playfulness took over and they began to skip stones at the waters edge of the Upper Falls. As they crossed the fifth bridge, they took an azimuth of 200 degrees, and looked up at the rock formation… There made from the cliffs edge was an eagle’s head and to the right and left were its wings. Only the front of the wings and the head were visible, but the size was extraordinary. They pointed and gaped, crouching fearfully, they scurried past. Along the gravel path and around the way, they did go; crossing and re-crossing the waterway. Boldly they pushed, bridge seven was a Deco style treat to the eyes. And pausing to looking up, fear suddenly took them, “How will we ever get out of here?” they asked themselves. Climbing eight slight steps to hug the walls of the cavern… twenty-three steps down into a dark tunnel. Moist and damp it was, sticking to their shoes. Carefully they were, otherwise they might slip and fall… It was a long way back, best be careful!! They had so much farther yet to go.
As they emerged from the tunnel they saw signs indicating which way to go. Having been here before they pulled out their trusty compass and took a bearing of 310 degrees and crossed the last obstacle. In crossing they saw on the right a huge cavern of whitened sandstone. Keeping on they entered another tunnel. From the middle of the tunnel the steps up began… Fifty of them there were, and the three Weinkaufs were beginning to be exhausted. So they paused here for at the top of the cave for a look-see. Gently they continued eastward. “Onward HO!” yelled the littlest. But this did little to improve their dispositions as they knew they were almost done. 7 steps up…. Then another… then forty more to the top!
Here the path divides into three directions: To the left was three more steps and they decided they didn’t like that way… even three was too many more. Straight ahead was a house like structure, and that didn’t seem like a good place to hide their treasure. To the right the path slopped downward and this is the path they took…
Following the ridge they came upon a large structure spanning the gorge. “Cross the gorge… that’s the place”, said the oldest. As they walked off the structure they continued forward to where the path split again. Forward--was up a large hill and they could not even think of this. Too tired were they. To the left were four stone benches; this seemed to be the most traveled and they didn’t like that either. To the right was the way they chose. Some thirty-five paces. Pacing along they passed a small stone bridge. At the second small stone bridge, they stopped and sat down on the NW end of the stones and took a bearing of 260 degrees. Standing they paced 14 times and arrived at a tree trunk which a machine had cut. Following the sawed tree up the hillside about 8 paces and beneath this tree near a rotten stump they placed their treasure.
In this trusty spot they placed the stamp and book. Quietly and secretly they returned to the placard of Grandma Gatewoods. The promised they would recount this tale to their children and friends. Of the dangers, fun and sunshine that shone on the day that they journeyed to place their great treasure of love.
If you happen upon this small treasure, please return it safely to it hiding place.