*Use these sparingly because they can get gross when wet. Recommended for hanging only, not as camo for ground caches.
I’ve planted 2 sock letterboxes – small authentic Lock & Locks (water tight), pushed into a black sock and hung in an evergreen tree. I got the idea from seeing a geocache hung this way. Found it when it had been hanging for over a year, the weathered sock blended in so well I didn’t see it even though I was looking at it. My McQuillan Bridge letterbox was my first sock hide. Hid it 2009. 2 years later it experienced a few tears but still quite robust. 4 years later and the same sock is hanging in the tree. The other cache is in a cemetery. Hid it 2011. Checked on it this Spring and the toe of the sock was quite holey (appropriate for the cemetery location :P ). I knotted the toe end and slipped the Lock & Lock back in, then loosely tied it back onto the branch (see photo). Since my first plant in 2009 I’ve also found a couple of boxes-in-a-sock. Here’s what I’ve learned:
- Expect the sock to last about 2 years (might last longer depending on the material and how many visits the box gets)
- Use a sock that’s mostly nylon, with not much or no cotton, but not a pantyhose type of sock
- A men’s black knee high dress sock works nicely
- Nylon blend lasts longer and dries faster
- Socks that retain water can get gross – musty, slimy.
- Sometimes insects like to live inside the sock (mostly earwigs – they are harmless)
- Pantyhose don’t last long, they tear and if you tie them to a gnarly branch it’s hard to pull them off which further tears the nylon
- Winter – if the sock gets wet then freezes up it will be difficult, perhaps impossible to undo the frozen knot
- I wouldn’t recommend sock hides for all of your letterboxes. Old weather beaten socks are not a lot of fun to stick your hand into but sometimes they are the perfect camouflage for an area.