Sourland Preserve LbNA # 8435
|Placed Date||May 30 2004|
|Location||Sourland Preserve, Belle Mead, NJ|
|Found By||The Northerner|
|Last Found||Jun 2 2016|
|Hike Distance||3-5 mi||active|
|Last Edited||Jul 23 2016|
THE SOURLAND PRESERVE LETTERBOXES
BOXES 1 & 2 PLACED BY: Coyotl Clan in 2001
BOX 3 PLACED BY: The Northerner in May 2004
LAST CHECKED: June 1, 2016
ROUTE: The first two boxes of this series were actually the first two letterboxes I ever found after hearing about this secret world of hidden treasures and clues, so I was delighted when I got asked by Coyotl Clan to adopt those boxes from them when they moved out of the area in 2004. Though I have made a couple of adjustments due to changes in the land, I have tried to keep the clues for these two boxes as close to the original version as possible. In 2004, I also added a third box to the series on the same path that has recently found a new home. Sourland Treasure is the same stamp as former Box #3 in the series, though it is now the second box you will come to. The hike is about 4.5 miles round trip. The trail is well marked. It has a steep climb of about 500 feet within the first half-mile plus and then does a gradual descent with some slight ups and downs the remaining 4 miles back to the car. Particularly on the flats you will see quite a bit of mud if there has been any significant rain recently and footing can be tricky in places with a lot of rocks and roots. I don't want to discourage anyone, it is a great trail that I run frequently, I just wouldn't test out your new high heels here! Allow 2.5 to 3 hours to find the whole series.
Route 206 from North: Follow Route 206 through Somerville and Hillsborough - approximately six miles from the Somerville Circle to Route 514 which is Amwell Road. Make a right turn onto Amwell Road and proceed one and a half miles to East Mountain Road. Turn left onto East Mountain Road. Travel for one mile, and you will see the Sourland Mountain Preserve entrance sign on the right.
Route 206 from South: Follow Route 206 through Princeton and Montgomery. Traveling up a small ramp, make a left onto Route 601. Follow Route 601, and make a right turn onto East Mountain Road by Carrier Clinic. Travel for one mile, and you will see the Sourland Mountain Preserve entrance sign on the left.
All boxes are hidden along the White Square Trail. Maps of the preserve may be available at the information kiosk adjacent to the parking lot, but if not don't worry! The trail is very well marked and begins at the edge of the woods just up from the kiosk. Notice the numbered markers as you travel the Square Trail.
Original Box 1:
About halfway through the hike you will run into a place where the path travels through a fence. From this point turn back the way you came and walk 40 paces to where the trail makes a sharp turn to the left. To your right (8 paces away) will be a set of rocks. The box is hidden under the easternmost end of the large flat rock.
Continue down the square trail. You will eventually come to the second huge boulder field: Roaring Rocks Boulders. Just past them you will hit a junction. The square trail turns left and the red trail comes in from the right (no markers on the red trail are currently visible, but the junction is obvious. Walk back 36 paces to two very large boulders on the right side of the trail. Walk east between the two boulders to their far end. From hear take a bearing south. 7 paces away is a small rock made up of several obvious layers sitting on top of each other with plenty of hiding spaces in between! The box itself is deep in the large crevice underneath the lowest layer at the northern end of the rock.
Original Box 2:
Continue down the square trail in the direction you were traveling. As you follow along the trail you will eventually cross a wooden bridge over a decent size creek with an old stone dam just upstream. If you hit intersection #9 you just missed it. From the southernmost end of the dam go 12 paces on a bearing of 204 deg. It's under the rocks.
Continue down the square trail to complete your hike. Hope you enjoyed the hunt! Please remember to be discrete while stamping in and rehiding the boxes. Let me know how the boxes are doing if you get a chance. Please remember to bring your own stamp pad.
NOTE: I consider one pace to equal two steps.