HOPE -- The Shawshank Redemption  LbNA # 21954

Placed DateMay 6 2006
LocationGlastonbury, CT
Planted ByWild Rover    
Found By oj drinker
Last Found Jun 8 2014
Hike Distance?

HOPE – “Rita Hayworth And The Shawshank Redemption”

Cotton Hollow Preserve, South Glastonbury

“Fear can hold you prisoner, hope can set you free.”

“HOPE” is a major theme running through Steven King’s novella “Rita Hayworth And The Shawshank Redemption.” The novella, which is part of a four-story compilation King entitled “Different Seasons” (1982), was made into the 1994 critically acclaimed movie “The Shawshank redemption” which starred Tim Robbins as banker-turned-convict Andy Dufresne, and Morgan Freeman as Shawshank Prison’s longtime inmate Ellis Boyd ‘Red’ Redding. The two inmates strike up a friendship and bond in Maine’s toughest high-security prison. The movie was nominated for seven (7) Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Actor (Morgan Freeman). It is one of the best and most well-made motion pictures I have ever seen, and one of my all-time favorites. If you have not yet seen the movie, I suggest that you stop here, as I would hate to give you a spoiler (then run, don’t walk, to the video store and see it before reading on – you will not be disappointed).

Andy Dufresne: That's the beauty of music. They can't get that from you... Haven't you ever felt that way about music?
Red: I played a mean harmonica as a younger man. Lost interest in it though. Didn't make much sense in here
Andy Dufresne: Here's where it makes the most sense. You need it so you don't forget.
Red: Forget?
Andy Dufresne: Forget that... there are places in this world that aren't made out of stone, and that there's something inside that they can't get to, and that they can't touch. It's yours.
Red: What're you talking about?
Andy Dufresne: Hope.

***ANDY’S HOPE – BOX #1**********************************

In what may be one of the only (or closest) depictions of something akin to Letterboxing in a Hollywood movie, Andy makes Red promise him that if he ever gets out of Shawshank Prison he will seek out a hidden box with secret contents.

Andy Dufresne: Red. If you ever get out of here, do me a favor.
Red: Sure, Andy. Anything.
Andy Dufresne: There's a big hayfield up near Buxton. You know where Buxton is?
Red: Well, there's... there's a lot of hayfields up there.
Andy Dufresne: One in particular. It's got a long rock wall with a big oak tree at the north end. It's like something out of a Robert Frost poem. It's where I asked my wife to marry me. We went there for a picnic and made love under that oak and I asked and she said yes. Promise me, Red. If you ever get out... find that spot. At the base of that wall, you'll find a rock that has no earthly business in a Maine hayfield. Piece of black, volcanic glass. There's something buried under it I want you to have.
Red: What, Andy? What's buried under there?
Andy Dufresne: [turns to walk away] You'll have to pry it up... to see.

On HOPEwell Street is the Cotton Hollow Preserve, and although it is limited to Glastonbury residents during parts of the year I have never experienced any problems with access. Park in the paved parking lot for the Grange Pool and at the far right corner of the lot is the trail head at the sign or the "Cotton Hollow Preserve." Follow the blue/white/blue blazed trail down toward the river, with a fence and a yard to your left. When you reach the elevated green/yellow "Wild Trout Stream" sign on a tree take a right on the trail. The river is now on your left. Soon come to a large tree to the right of the trail leaning sharply overhead toward the river, which is just to your left. Walk about twelve (12) steps past this tree along the trail to a tree with a blue/white/blue blaze on it. Look directly to the right off the trail to see a 25 foot stump, and bushwhack up the hill to the stump. With the stump at your back (and the river behind you) take a reading of about 30 and bushwhack along that reading across the upper trail for about 25 yards to a tall stone "altar" made up of several large flat stones, the top stone of which has a crevasse through the top. Directly to the right of the "altar" about 25 steps along a fallen tree is a four-sister tree of grand size. Continue bushwhacking in the same direction about 15 steps (along a bearing of about 40) to another four-sister tree, the farthest sister of which has an elevated pooh house that should catch the eye of a letterboxer. Inside this pooh house you will find ANDY'S HOPE.

***RED’S HOPE – BOX #2*************************************

When Red is finally paroled he buys a compass and keeps his promise to Andy – he travels to Buxton and finds the hay field with the massive wolf oak Andy had referenced. He goes to the end of the stone wall and finds the large piece of volcanic glass. Under the glass is hidden a tin box, inside of which, sealed in a plastic bag, Red finds some cash, a map, and the following note:

Dear Red,

If you're reading this, then you're out. One way or another, you're out. And if you've followed along this far, you might be willing to come a little further. I think you remember the name of the town, don't you? I could use a good man to help me get my project on wheels.

Meantime, have a drink on me - and do think it over. I will be keeping an eye out for you. Remember that hope is a good thing, Red, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies. I will be hoping that this letter finds you, and find you well.

Your friend,
Peter Stevens

After finding Andy’s box, red finally finds his HOPE. He recalls having received a blank postcard in Shawshank with a postmark from Fort Hancock, Texas, and to thinking at the time that this was where Andy crossed the border into Mexico. Red boards a bus for Fort Hancock, Texas, and for only the second time in his life Red commits a crime – parole violation. Red, aboard the bus and full of hope, narrates the final scenes of the movie.

Sure I remember the name (of the town). Zihuatanejo. A name like that is just too pretty to forget.

I find I am excited, so excited I can hardly hold the pencil in my trembling hand. I think it is the excitement that only a free man can feel, a free man starting a long journey whose conclusion in uncertain.

I hope Andy is down there.

I hope I can make it across the border.

I hope to see my friend and shake his hand.

I hope the Pacific is as blue as it has been in my dreams.

I hope.

Bushwhack back to the main trail along the riverbank and proceed along the blue/white/blue trail past a large flat rock to the left well renown for sunning swimmers. Continue on the blue/white/blue trail which becomes somewhat of a rooty/stony cliffside trail. Soon you come to a large "egg" rock sandwiched by two trees. About 100 yards down the trail from the egg rock is a pair of small trees to the left of the trail, the right one bearing a blue/white/blue blaze. Ten steps on the trail past this blazed tree is a rock to the left of the trail perfect for sitting trailside. Sitting on this rock and facing the trail take a reading of 330 and proceed about 23 steps on that bearing to a large three-sister evergreen that began as a four-sister, but two of the sisters grew together to form an oval "window" that is unique. From the tree window take a bearing of 230 and walk about 26 steps to a small tree with a rock on both sides and a large flat boulder in front of it. Behind this tree is a pooh house at its base, inside of which is a Apiece of quartz “that has no earthly business in a Maine hay field." Under the quartz you will find RED'S HOPE.

***THANKS AND CREDITS*******************************

Thanks to MayEve and krusty Krab for helping me to plant this box in time to debut at the Spring Into Boxing 2006 Gathering in Glastonbury. Credits to Steven King and his collection of novellas, “Different Seasons.” All quotes above are taken from the movie, and not the novella, although the movie follows the book very closely. Wonderfully written. Thank you, Mr. King. I hope you find these boxes, like the stamps, and enjoy them !!! Thanks for looking !!! --- WILD ROVER