The Great Treasure Hunt

The following story, written by Gabe Smith, received an honorable mention in the Jotters category of this year’s Summer Writing Contest, hosted by Friends of the Palisades Library. Each story features a theme of “Palisades Tales: From the Mountains to the Sea.”


This summer I went to Will Rogers Beach with my parents and sixteen-year-old sister, Sophie. Sophie and I started building a big sand castle close to the ocean and I dug the moat. After I finished the moat, a wave came and filled the moat with water. But the wave was strong and destroyed part of the castle. I started to rebuild the castle and then my sister said, “Look, there’s a piece of paper in the sand.” I picked it up and read it. It said, “Go to Sweet Rose tomorrow at 3:00 to find your next clue.” “Yay, I love treasure hunts!” I said, “I know,” said Sophie smiling.

The next day at 3:00, I walked with Sophie to Sweet Rose and we ordered a chocolate ice cream sundae with whipped cream, sprinkles and a cherry. While I was enjoying my ice cream, I was looking around for the clue. I was just about to give up, when Sophie said, “Wait, look under my chair.” I looked under her red chair and saw a piece of paper taped to it. I unfolded the paper and it said, “Go to the big oak tree in Temescal Canyon next Saturday at noon to get your treasure.” I was so excited!

When I went to bed Friday evening, I dreamed of what the treasure could be. I imagined a treasure chest filled with gold and precious jewels. When I woke up on Saturday morning, I looked in my sister’s room, but she wasn’t in her bed. At 11:30, I asked my mom to take me to Temescal. She said “ok” and we walked there together. When I got to the tree, I saw my sister holding a puppy. She said, “This is our new dog. Its name is Goldie.” “I love her” I said. Goldie’s fur was the color of gold and she was the cutest dog ever. I was very surprised and happy! My new puppy was better than all the jewels in the world.