Man behind mysterious note comes forward

Mike Krumboltz
The Sideshow

Note from Tim Taylor, age 13

About 40 years ago, 13-year-old Tim Taylor left a note atop a mountain in the Sierra Nevada range in California. The note was simple and to the point: "Tim Taylor climbed to this peak, Thursday August 17, 1972. Age 13 yrs. Anyone finding this please write."

After four decades, the note, which Taylor had left in a metal film canister, was discovered by 69-year-old hiker Larry Wright. Wright attempted to do what was asked and track down Taylor. But he had no luck. There were no voter registration records, and people from Taylor's old city didn't know where he had moved to. But then La Cañada Online ran the story. Soon enough, word reached the mysterious Taylor.

Taylor told the paper, "One of my dad's old cronies called me Saturday, and he says, 'You're not going to believe this, but you're on the front page of the newspaper.' All my old compatriots from La Cañada have been in touch." Taylor now serves as a Superior Court judge in San Diego County.

Taylor and Wright spoke with La Cañada Online about their unusual connection. Taylor explained that he left the note while he was hiking with his Boy Scout troop. It was a habit he'd picked up thanks to his father. "Whenever [my family] would go to Catalina, my dad would have us put a note in a bottle," he said. "It's kind of the same idea." Taylor chose the location because it appeared that nobody had ever set foot on it before. Plus, according to the map provided to him by the Boy Scouts, the peak was unnamed.

Forty years later, the peak is still unnamed. Taylor said, "I'm probably the first to climb that peak, and I think [Larry Wright] and his grandson are probably the second. Maybe we can name it the Taylor-Wright Peak—after the first two people to climb it."