A seemingly common perception by authors of magic mushroom books is that the liberty cap (psi. semilanceata) is not only the most favored of all magic shrooms but that it is the easiest one on the body (no negative physical effects). The first bit of lore of their favor is because of a fairly well establised fact, and that is that the liberty cap is very common in the growing zones it is known to appear in. In other words, it is easy to find if the seeker is in the right zone at the right time. Of all the magic shrooms, the liberty caps are ubiquitous in certain always identifiable locales, green fields with cows, horses or other grass eating animals such as deer, elk, moose and such. The liberty cap is essentially a coprophilac fungus (dung eater). And this can be easily seen in the search for it.
The Liberty caps are famous In the Pacific Northwest. They appear without fail at the beginning of the mushroom season when it starts in the fall rains. If you know of a green field with cows and such, find the cow pies or mounds of elk manure (black pellets) and look around them in a radius of about 2 feet, and if they are there, they will be growing out of the grass or hidden in the taller grass. The nearness of the fruitings to the manure piles is the sign that actually the Liberty caps are coprophilac from a bit of a distance. They obviously get nutrients that they need from the manure and fruit a little distance from the actual manure in the surrounding grass. Most other coprophiles will fruit directly on the cow pie. So I would call the Liberty cap (Psi. Semilanceata) an indirect coprophile and to find it, you must always consider its need for the manure.
I finally had the opportunity to find and pick them for myself in the Quinault Valley Washington. I found them growing in a green field frequented by deer with plenty of black deer pellets around. The Lib caps grew near the pellets. I took 2 dried grams of primo young healthy Lib Caps. On a scale of 1 - 10, I would rate the trip an 8. If I was someone else, with less experience, I would have been overwhelmed and given it a 10.
Date: Jan 18 1999 (Martin Luther King day)
Time: High Noon
Place: Quinault Rain Forest
SHROOMS - picked last fall in early November in the deer field opposite the Quinault North Shore Ranger station (accross from the Maple Glade hiking trail).
Amount: 2 grams of dried small pristine thin stemmed Lib caps - not water logged. Accurately weighed with a .01 gram accurate balance.
Noon - rainy weather - I feel good.
12:05 PM - Chewed up shrooms with papaya digestive enzyme pills on an empty stomach. I pre-pulverized the shrooms in baggies by pounding on the baggies with the rubber heel of a shoe. They tasted like earthy peanuts - not bad at all!! They didn't smell like mushrooms. They smelled nice and earthy - kind of like fresh forest humous! I had to floss my teeth because I hate shrooms when they lodge in between the teeth (yes, I still have a lot of teeth).
12:20 - feeling it in stomach system - not bad, but there.
12:30 - A little yucky in stomach - papaya pills helping - no acid indigestion. Feeling it in head and body - typical psilocybin come on. Starting to feel the trip begin - mild right now.
12:32 - feeling it more. Slightly psycedelicized - body effect in arms and upper body - a little dizzy in the head - feeling fairly happy. Stomach? - There but in control - yeah papaya pills! - Not without physical effect. Similar to cubies.
12:36 - getting high - level 3 (out of 10)
12:40 - still higher - playing the guitar - feels the usual creativity. Who's hands are those? 12:45 - NOT WITHOUT STOMACH QUEASINESS! Not bad, but there - typical. Feel weak and giddy. High - level 4 (out of 10) getting off nicely. Sick of TV
Added note: Here is where I get into the car and I went to July Creek (awesome place - nobody there - giant trees - like a cathedral in the forest).
12:50 - Tripping - not heavy - physical effect - yes - giddy and slightly nauseaus - not bad but typical - Level 5.
Another note - I got out of the car and went exploring. The notes end with a big 8 circled.
End of trip report
Another good experiment with the liberty caps was done just recently on two young friends, a guy and his chick. The guy (with about 15 cubie trips under his belt) took 1.2 grams of dried lib caps (from the same ones that I took about a month ago). The chick took 1.5 grams of cubies. They both tripped. The guy told me he had never been that high before. So here, to him, the lib caps are indeed more powerful. The chick reported being totally high (but she was a newbie). The guy vomited 2 hours into the trip. He had never vomited before on shrooms. The chick had a little queezyness that went away during the trip.
I have a friend out here on the West side that is an avid mushroom picker (goes out into the mountains and comes back with pounds of matsutake and chanterells). He knows the lib caps very well and turned me onto an awesome field in the Quinault Valley. He told me he prefers the cubies.
But the main purpose of this report is to say that I (and my friends) had to pay the price of admission to the fantastic show, just like the cubensis. This is a physical ordeal that must be dealt with, and can be. But it is a learning process and it has to do with the physical and mental approach to eating the shrooms. The ordeal begins in the stomach and spreads around the body as the magic alkaloids course thru the blood system. Digestion is the key to making the ordeal tolerable and allowing the magic shrooms to show their wonders. Anyone willing to pay the price of the ordeal, will see the show. And all psilocybian shrooms have tickets for sale at the box office.
updated March 28 1999