Surprise Typewriter Let Hikers Peck Out Love Notes to Grand Canyon

By Justin Housman for

Ever written a love letter to a place? If you were to consider it, the Grand Canyon would be deserving. Though you’d also have some literary competition.

At the end of 2017, NPS ranger Elyssa Shalla left a manual typewriter at a viewpoint overlooking Plateau Point that follows a 6-mile hike. The typewriter (which cost $5 at Goodwill) sat on a small table with a note: “Dear Hiker, welcome to Plateau Point. You’ve hiked a long ways. Please take a seat in the chair and relax. Look around. Take it all in. What does this moment mean to you?”

Over three days, 76 people left typed notes. Poems, haikus, bon mots. Shalla collected the notes for her Towers & Type Project.

“Hearing the words ‘Grand Canyon’ and now experiencing it for the first time, I realize that the term ‘Grand’ falls far [short] of what this place [truly] represents: Perfection,” wrote one visitor.” “oh so many miles / blisters never make [me smile] / really cramps my style,” typed another.

Read more here.

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