Quantum Catbox  LbNA # 31336

Placed DateMay 26 2007
CountyEl Paso
LocationManitou Springs, CO
Found By boxtops
Last Found Jul 26 2009
Hike Distance?

Erwin Schrödinger attempted to explain a seeming paradox in quantum physics where a particle can exist in two states simultaneously until it is observed, whereupon it takes on the properties of a single state. Schrödinger's famous “thought experiment” to explain this became known as Schrödinger's Cat. A cat is put into a box along with a radioactive substance, a Geiger counter and a bottle of poison gas. Particles in the radioactive substance exist in both quantum states simultaneously. If a particle exists in the emitted state, the Geiger counter will detect it, releasing the poison gas and killing the cat. If it is not emitted, the cat will live. The box is sealed and the state of the cat cannot be known – and thus can be assumed to exist in both the alive and dead states – until the box is opened to see whether the cat is alive or dead.

This is the letterbox equivalent of Schrödinger's Cat. A stamp exists in two states, a dead cat stamp, and a live cat stamp. Which stamp you get cannot be known until you find and open the letterbox.

Terrain: Moderate. About 2 miles to the box mostly uphill (but downhill back). Some narrow unmarked trails.
Clues: Easy if you know the code. Keyword: Schrodinger.

Directions: From Hwy 24 west, turn south on 26th St. Follow it south around a “S” curve to a pullout near the second gate for Red Rock Canyon Open Space. This is just before the intersection with Gold Camp Road. Park in the pullout. Walk around the gate and follow the dirt road up to the intersection with Lion Trail.



- No inkpad or pencil in the box, make sure you bring your own.
- This is an unofficial entrance to Red Rock Canyon. If you wish to be more official, trailheads exist at 31st St. and Ridge Rd. See the trail maps to get you to Lion Trail.
- I intended for finders to stamp only the stamp they saw upon opening the box, but I know many people will want to stamp both stamps. Well, that’s up to you, but at least make a note of which one you got when you opened the box.
- I may answer questions about decoding the cipher; other than that, please do not ask me for additional hints without offering a bribe of unpublished clues, hitchhikers, etc.
- Please email me with notes about the box: jelybean.books@comcast.net.