Tunnel II Trail LbNA # 4471
|Placed Date||Jun 22 2003|
|Location||Lake Arrowhead, CA|
|Found By||Happy Hunters |
|Last Update||May 1 2007 |
The Tunnel II Trail is a short, easy 15 minute hike with a beautiful scenic reward at it's end, beautiful expansive views of the local mountains, Silverwood Lake and even the High Desert on the right-hand horizon.
UPDATE, Oct 10th, 2007. Due to recent logging the forest and trail here are a mess. In many areas the trail has been erased or it is not passable due to downed trees. I would advise you pass on this Letterbox until further notice, Chowder.
To find the Tunnel II Trail letterbox exit the Village to the right onto Highway 189. Highway 189 winds along the southern shore of Lake Arrowhead to Blue Jay. At Blue Jay turn right onto Highway 173 (aka North Bay Road); you will see Mac Donald's across the way. Continue up Highway 173 for about 2 miles to Peninsula. Turn left at Peninsula and proceed up the hill past Rhine and Grass Valley Road to Tunnel Drive. Turn right at Tunnel Drive and drive down the hill to the end of the street and turn right again, this is Golf Course Road. You will see Grass Valley Lake and the park on your left. You will be driving past Kennas Grass Valley Lake Letterbox so be sure to stop and stamp it up. Drive past the small dam at the end of Grass Valley Lake and turn left at the first street, this is Oakmont. Proceed on Oakmont a very short distance to the stop-sign at Brentwood. Turn left onto Brentwood then make an immediate right onto Trinity. Wind your way up Trinity and turn left onto Merced. Once on Merced you will make an immediate right turn onto Amador. The Amador street sign is obscured by a tree, Amador is the first right you can make once on Merced. Proceed up Amador past Windward to Blackoaks Road. Turn right onto Blackoaks Road and drive to where the pavement ends at the end of the street. Park anywhere in front of either large home at the end of the street and prepare for your hike. It is about 15 minutes to the overlook, it might be a good idea to carry water, especially on hot days.
Walk up the dirt about 100 paces, this is a short way past the boulders on your left. After about 100 paces up this road turn 90 degrees to your left and walk through the brush to the wire fence, about 20 paces. Turn right at the wire fence and walk along the fence for about 120 paces to the entrance to the forest. This is a small opening in the fence marked with a small yellow sign "San Bernardino National Forest". At my last visit this sign was missing and replaced with a red ribbon. Enter the forest here and walk along the dirt road for about 5 minutes. This used to be a very nice trail, however recent dead tree removal has turned it into a messy dirt road. After about 5 minutes of walking the road turns left. Keep walking until the trail starts to head uphill. Look down and to your right for a dirt road just down the hill. If you proceed up the trail to the concrete water tank you have gone too far, go back down to the bottom of the rise. You will need to cut through the brush here, there is no real trail, down this small hill to the dirt road and below. Once you reach the bottom of the this hill you should see the small sign "Tunnel Trail 3W19" across the way.
Once through the Tunnel II entrance the main trail turns left. You want to take a smaller trail that is on the right and about 10 paces up the trail from the entrance. Proceed up this smaller trail for about 140 paces. You will be hiking through a grove of 6 foot high Mazanita trees, green bush like trees with shiny, smooth, dark red trunks and branches. After 140 paces look for a small trail leading through the Mazanita trees on your left (April 2nd, 2007 UPDATE. A large tree has fallen about twenty paces from your goal, you will have to cut through the brush to get around it). 10 paces up this smaller trail will lead you to the lookout area, a small open area of large rocks and boulders. The first, large flat boulder is a great place to sit and enjoy the view and stamp away. The letterbox is located at the right end of this large flat boulder, in the gap between it and the adjoining boulder. There is a large flat rock stuck in the gap, hiding the blue topped letterbox, you will need to lift or roll it away. Be sure to replace this flat rock or the squirrels will have the letterbox half way down the mountain in no time.
NOTE: Always take adequate precautions (such as prodding with a stick and/or wearing gloves) before reaching into dark crevasses and holes in the wild. Before you set out read the waiver of responsibility and disclaimer. This letterbox is not accessible during winter months due to snow.
UPDATE December 2005: This letterbox has been replaced with a new book and stamp.
Difficulty: A nice 15 minute hike.
Compass Needed? No.
Wheelchair Accessible? No, hiking ability required.
Be sure to visit my Letterbox Website: Chowder's Letterboxes