Mystery Wall Letterbox  LbNA # 14185

Placed DateApr 3 2005
LocationMissoula, MT
Found By Half Empty
Last Found Aug 3 2013
Hike Distance?

Difficulty: Easy, short walk on grassy trail.

Directions: The Mystery Wall Letterbox is planted in the Pattee Canyon Recreation Area. This area is a combination of Lolo National Forest, State, City Open Space and University of Montana lands that provide public access from Mount Sentinel to the Pattee Canyon Recreation area. Pattee Canyon offers a relaxing non-motorized refuge from urban life in the Missoula Valley. To get to the picnic, ski and folfing areas take Southwest Higgins Avenue to Pattee Canyon Drive (Road #533). Go 3.5 miles east to the recreation area.

Facilities: At the picnic area you'll find tables, fire rings, toilets (some handicapped accessible), parking and group picnic facilities, but no running water, electricity or overnight camping.

Two group picnic sites have large tables, grills and parking lots that can accommodate from 40 to 200 people. The picnic area gate is open 9 a.m. to sundown daily from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Volunteer hosts are on duty in the picnic area in the summers.

Trails and Roads: There is an extensive system of trails and roads open year-round to non-motorized use. In the winter, some of the trails around the picnic area are groomed and maintained by the Missoula Nordic Ski Club and the Forest Service for cross-country skiing.

Clues: Park in the Unit B parking lot. Walk through the group picnic area and across the meadow to the Meadow Loop Trail. You will be traveling northward (somewhat). Follow Meadow Loop Trail. It is an old road that is now overgrown with grasses, not much of the old track is left. In the winter this is a ski trail. Walk west on this trail for approximately 1/2 mile. As you walk this trail the folfing range (folfing is frisbee golf) is on your left and the forest is on your right. You will come to a brown Forest Service sign that says Meadow Loop with an arrow to the left and below that Meadow Loop Cutoff with an arrow to the right. Continue heading west up the small trail behind the sign. You will be heading into the forest. You will come to an earth embankment to the left of the trail. This embankment makes a right angle to the trail. On the other side of the embankment there is a trench or gully. The embankment is supported along the backside with rotting wooden planks. Turn left and walk parallel alongside the trench for the length of the wall. At the end of the wall, turn left and take the small path east. This path or trail is also overgrown with grasses. Walk down this path for approximately 70 paces. You will be walking parallel to the folfing range which is on your left. Look to the right and you will see an old jagged dead stump. Walk 30 paces to this stump. The Mystery Wall Letterbox is hidden behind this stump buried under debris. (Please be careful when removing and replacing this letterbox. Folfers use this area heavily and we are not sure if they would destroy a letterbox.)

Here's the mystery. Do you know what this area was used for during World War II? Send us an e-mail message if you do.

Enjoy this beautiful area. Rockmover and Quiltmaker