Mid-Missouri Bed & Breakfast Hitchhiker Hostel  LbNA # 22134

Placed DateMay 6 2006
LocationColumbia, MO
Found By (hidden)
Hike Distance?
Last EditedMar 7 2016

First box confirmed in place March 5, 2016; second box confirmed in place: 1/17/2013

Welcome to the Mid-Missouri Bed & Breakfast Hitchhiker Hostel (HHH). This HHH began with eight of the 13 Hitchhikers (HHs) that were designed for the Mid-Mo Spring 2006 LB Gathering HH contest, including the three contest winners. The contest was to design a HH based on your favorite fantasy character.

An HHH is a place to exchange hitchhikers and is guaranteed to have at least one Hitchhiker present at all times. However, you do not need to bring a HH to visit this box. Like any regular letterbox (LB), a HHH has its own logbook to sign and its own stamp to collect. The Bed & Breakfast logbook and stamp should remain with the HHH.

RULES: Most HHHs operate under the equal exchange rule: you must bring a Hitchhiker in order to remove a Hitchhiker. However, because my philosophy is to keep hitchhikers moving as much as possible, the rules for the Bed & Breakfast HHH are slightly different: AS LONG AS AT LEAST ONE HITCHHIKER REMAINS IN THE HHH WHEN YOU ARE FINISHED, you may drop off a HH without picking up one or pick up a HH without dropping off one. (Please be courteous; don’t be greedy).

Be sure to CHECK IN or CHECK OUT at the GUEST REGISTRY near the front of the logbook when dropping off or taking HHs so that I know which rooms in the Hostel are vacant.

This box is hidden on the grounds of the University of Missouri Extension office in Columbia, MO and has been planted with the approval of Extension staff. To get to the office, take I-70 to exit 121 (Midway exit).* On the south side of the Interstate, turn right (south) onto Highway UU. Quickly you’ll pass Van Horn Tavern Road. Almost immediately, at the next driveway turn left into UM-Ext parking lot.

*Note: unlike standard diamond-shaped exits, exit 121 may be a little confusing. From the east, you’ll have to curve to the left before you come to a stop sign, and then turn left to go over the Interstate. From both directions, it will feel as if you’re going back onto the northbound on-ramp before you see the turn off on the right for Hwy UU.

From the SE corner of the UM-Ext. parking lot, near the satellite dish, head due east until you reach the end of a small clearing. There may be some mulch present, and you’ll pass a small shed on the left. Update 10/24-11 (Apparently another shed has been built closer to the parking lot since this box was planted, so you'll need to go to the second shed.) TO FIND HHH LOCATION, face the shed's doors, go around the building to the right (counterclockwise) and look under the NE corner by the stones that support the shed.
For a Bonus Box, follow the clues below:

Continue downhill, bushwhacking in an easterly direction into a moist, marshy and sometimes muddy bottomland. Stop at the bottom of the hill.

Use caution. During the growing season some of the plants may be waist-tall making it difficult to see the footing including fallen branches and limbs or hidden animals. Some poison ivy exists (mostly as hairy vines on trees) as well as some stinging nettles. Don’t find out the hard way what these plants look like. The slope is also steep in places and may be slippery when wet. Long pants, closed-toed footwear and bug protection are recommended.

At the bottom of the hill, a few hundred feet from the parking lot in which you started, notice two VERY large trees which have fallen in opposite directions. One lies with its head facing south; the other lies with its head facing north. (Update: Jan 2013 Only the north facing tree remains) Their bases almost touch. The tree facing north has multiple splits along its trunk.

From the base of the north-facing tree, follow its trunk for about 30 feet. If you walk north along the downhill side in the tall weeds, it is about 12 paces north of the base. If you stay near the trunk, you’ll have to do some ducking or climbing. Stop at a point where you notice one of the middle trunks is touching the ground. On the east side of this middle trunk there are three small-to-medium-sized trees standing in a row, all about 3-5 feet apart. Stand on the downhill side of the fallen giant and face the middle of these three trees. The Bonus LB is a plastic square box under the large trunk and near a fallen log, guarded by pieces of bark. Please replace bark to cover as much of the box as possible.

To stamp in, you may sit on the fallen giant. If you want more comfortable seating, take the LB back to your car, or sit at a picnic table on the north side of the office building, or on the bench near the old springhouse just west of the flagpole. Please rehide well in the exactly same location you found it. As this area obviously gets lots of water, be sure to place it so that the LB will not be carried away by water coming down the hillside.
--Fox-fyr, Columbia, MO