I finish up in Colton before 2:00, so what the heck, let's head east. I'm past Yucaipa while searching for boxes on the iPhone and finally decide to NOT go to Cabazon, and instead veer south for Hemet. Idyllwild has plenty of boxes, but that's too far for an unplanned trip.
I drive all the way to the marina at Diamond Valley Lake, but it's $7 to park and I have no cash, so nevermind. Next, I head up to Maze Stone, park the car and make the short walk. As I'm approaching, I see a family of four around the fenced location, and I can hear dad saying "Is that northwest?" to mom, who's holding a sheet of paper.
"Those wouldn't be clues in your hand, would they?" They look like befuddled deer in headlights. I let them know I'm there for a letterbox, and they light up. I don't know what it's like in New England, but around here it is a rare treat to bump into a fellow boxer on the trails.
It turns out this is their very first adventure, mom having just read a magazine article yesterday. Lacking a compass, they were about to give up. But I helped them work through the clue and dad flipped over the rock hiding the box. They were all excited.
I also had a hitchhiker on me that I'd intended to put in the box, so I stamped it into the log and then let them take it with them. I also explained the concept of an exchange, so they were surprised and overjoyed to come away with three stamps from their very first trip. And since I use the app on my iPhone all the time now, I gave them my regular compass.
It was a 75 mile drive home from only a single find, but I'd have to say it was one of my favorite boxing trips ever!
And rather than put up a third journal entry in a week, here's a couple pics from Mission San Juan Capistrano. The first is inside Father Serra's Church, the oldest building in California. The second explains why, showing ruins from an earthquake.