1st Outboard Motor  LbNA # 44923

OwnerWisconsin Hiker      
Placed DateNov 22 2008
LocationNashotah, WI
Found By shooting starz
Last Found Jul 22 2015
Hike Distance1 mi
Last EditedMay 15 2016

Last checked/found: 22-NOV-08

This letterbox was created by Lee & Nancy of California for the WI Letterboxing 10th Anniversary Gathering. It is now planted in a permanent location.

Location: netkciD kraP

Time: ~30 minutes depending on trail conditions & your hiking speed.

Terrain: Grassy and dirt trails, some small hills.


“The creation of the first practical outboard motor is often credited to Norwegian-American inventor Ole Evinrude in 1908. The idea came to Ole after rowing about five miles on Okauchee Lake one day in 1906. The story is told of Ole and his girlfriend having a picnic on an island with another couple. Ole's girlfriend and future wife, Bess, commented that it would be nice to have some ice cream on such a hot day. In an effort to impress Bess, Ole volunteered to row to town to fulfill her wish. On his way back, with the ice cream melting in the boat, Ole envisioned a better way.

By 1909, Ole had built and tested a new outboard motor with just over one horsepower. The motor was marketed as a "detachable row boat motor." That same year, he built 25 more motors and started the Evinrude Motor Company. By 1913, he was selling thousands of motors per year and making continuous improvements.”

Ole Evinrude's legacy survives in the outboard motors used by recreational boaters, fishermen, and even the military (from World War II to Desert Storm).

Since there weren’t any good parks on Okauchee Lake, we chose to place this box at a nearby lake instead. From the parking lot, take the trail heading east past the fire lane gate. At the 4-way take the path at 120 degrees. Motor to the left at the next “Y”, then continue straight ahead past a green contraption on the left.

Notice an inlet on right. Can you imagine Ole & his girlfriend rowing on a lake like this? Now picture them puttering around powered in a new & amazing MOTOR boat!

After viewing the lake, take a hairpin left and tromp up out of the wake that might come washing ashore. You’ll find the motor in the center of the log pile on the left as you reach the top of the hill.

After stamping in, please reseal & rehide as carefully as a mechanic would tend an antique engine. Then continue on the path, taking a right at the first “T”, then a left shortly afterwards. Stay on this main path to return to the parking lot.

We'd really appreciate an email with a status update if you look for the box. Thanks!