Joe Dancer's Woods  LbNA # 22923 (ARCHIVED)

Placed DateJun 12 2006
LocationMcMinnville, OR
Found By Boricua
Last Found Jul 26 2006
Hike Distance?


This letterbox is located in a densely wooded section of Joe Dancer Park in McMinnville. This large multi-use city park is located on the Yamhill River near where Three Mile Lane crosses a bridge, not far from downtown. You enter the park down a slope and come to a traffic circle. Take the road going off to the right, past some baseball fields. After a short distance you will come to the Drew Gary Ottley Memorial Skateboard Park on your right. Find a place to park near this very popular feature; there are parking areas on both sides. If skaters are present you may enjoy watching the young dare-devils zooming around; but maybe not.
On one side of the skateboard park is a wooded section with a trail headed back up the way you came. Don't take that trail, but veer off to your left and follow a long, dirt roadway/trail that circumnavigates a large field and a more baseball diamonds. It is bordered on one side by trees. Continue on that trail for about two hundred yards until you come to a place where a large, vigorous stand of blackberry vines appears on your left. About 175 paces from where the blackberries begin and just before the roadway/trail heads under some trees, you will come to an open spot with an improved trail going off to your right into the woods. It is easy to locate. Leave the roadway/trail you have been on and follow that smaller trail. It advised that you not use this trail in rainy weather.
After about 20 yards, 70 paces more or less, you should come to a downed tree that the trail skirts to the right; now you know you are on the right trail. This dense wooded section has been left for us to explore and enjoy. It is probably much like the lands along our rivers were like before
- 2 -
the country was cleared for farming. You will hear bird calls and
miscellaneous creature noises all along the way. After about 78 paces on this second trail you will come to a fork. The fork to the left is the one you want. You will see that the right fork has two downed logs across it so don't go that way; it dies in a few yards in some brush.
In another 23 paces, the trail forks again. This time you are to take the right fork and follow it toward the river. Here the undergrowth gets quite dense and you will have to climb over some branches of a downed tree. Finally, after about 57 paces from the trail fork, you will come to a high bluff overlooking the river. Be careful here, especially if you have small children with you! Some adventurous individuals try to climb down that bluff, but it looks risky.
At that point, to your left is a another downed tree with numerous branches. You will have to climb over some of the branches and peep into the base of the downed tree. That's where you will find this letterbox!
After you have signed in and gotten your stamp, return the way you came back to the trail, but turn to your right at the fork and continue. This trail makes a loop and will bring you back to the dirt roadway/trail in a short distance. Hope you enjoyed the tromp through the woods!

In the darkling wood
hard by the murky Yamhill:
hidden letterbox.