Brown’s Canyon Solution

by Dave from KC, MO


I think Forrest Fenn might have hidden his treasure somewhere within a small stand of cottonwood trees located just to the east of “Seidel’s Suck Hole” (class IV rapid) and the railroad tracks located on the Arkansas River in Brown’s Canyon in Colorado.  Below is my dissection of the poem, clues, hints and comments from Forrest.

As I have gone alone in there – Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint.  I am concerned that this is actually the first clue and that ‘alone’ is the most important word.  If the treasure is buried in a special place that Forrest often went alone, I am not sure that my location is one of those places for Forrest…maybe it is, but the evidence is not as strong in this regard for my location as opposed to other theories that would have better hints from TTOTC.  With  that said, please continue reading because I think the other solutions below are fairly strong…especially the blaze.

And with my treasures bold, Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint.  ‘Bold’ could be a hint to a short trek that I took which required me to go through two unlocked gates.

Stone Bridge

I can keep my secret where, – Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint

And hint of riches new and old. – Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint.  The new treasure could be his autobiography and everything else is old treasure.  Or, the ‘new’ riches could be the rafting and good times had by families and friends at this location.

Begin it where warm waters halt and take it in the canyon down, Clue #1 – many hot / warm springs above Brown’s Canyon and some are tributaries to creeks that run into the Arkansas River above Brown’s canyon (e.g. Chalk Creek, etc.).  Other hint – Forrest Fenn has stated that several people have gotten the first two clues…meaning it is a somewhat popular / obvious solution / place and not one of the more obscure theories.  Brown’s Canyon is definitely not an obscure solution location and many people are searching for the treasure in Brown’s canyon.  Extra affirmation – Forrest said that when he buried his treasure he could smell pinyon nuts in the air…pinyon nuts are common in the Brown’s canyon area but I do not think these are not located in Montana or Wyoming…during that interview, Forrest mentioned that he regretted one of the things he said…I believe the pinyon nut clue was that regret (basically shrunk the search area to New Mexico and Colorado).  This area is at about 7300 feet (Forrest said it is above 5000 and below 10200 feet).

Not far, but too far to walk.  Clue #2 – From Chalk Creek to the ‘put in’ at Stone Bridge is is approx. 10-11 miles which is not far but it would be a long walk to the starting point for a 79-80-year-old man.

Put in below the home of Brown.  Clue #3 – ‘Brown’s Grotto Warm Spring’ is located a couple of miles north of Stone Bridge ‘put in’ (place to launch boats, rafts, kayaks, etc.).  Stone Bridge is the first public ‘put in’ below Brown’s Grotto warm spring.  The closer public ‘put in’ to this warm spring would be ‘Hecla’ but it is north of Brown’s Grotto (not south).  Extra affirmation hint – Forrest has indicated that several people solved the first two clues and then essentially ignored, or flew right past, the rest of the clues…this could be a reference to the multiple people that indicated (on blog sites) that they started at the Hecla ‘put in’ which is ‘above’ (north) and not ‘below’ (south) of the potential home of Brown (i.e. Brown’s Grotto Warm Spring).

From there it’s no place for the meek, Clue #4 – Class III and Class IV rapids are not for the meek.  Seidel’s Suck hole is the only class IV rapid in the canyon.
The end is ever drawing nigh; Hint – as you walk up the east side of the Arkansas River using the abandoned railroad tracks (because the west side is private) the river is ‘drawing’ (i.e. pulling towards you) on the left hand (nigh) side.  The end is Seidel’s suck hole which will be on the left if you are on the east side of the Arkansas.  Extra hint / affirmation – Forrest was asked if he used any other mode of transportation besides walking and his car…. Forrest replied (paraphrasing to follow…not a quote) that he did not know if he could answer that question with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ properly (i.e. maybe this means some might consider the railroad tracks a ‘mode of transportation’ whereas others would not? – this was a big affirmation for me about the railroad tracks being used by Forrest).

Seidels Suck Hole

There’ll be no paddle up your creek, Clue #5 – since you are walking up stream there is no need for a paddle.  There is a creek between you and the Arkansas River as you walk along the railroad tracks on the east side.  You are heading north (‘up’).

Railroad Tracks

Just heavy loads and water high.  Clue #6 – Heavy loads (note this is plural) has multiple meanings
·       Railroad tracks used for heavy loads
·       Forrest Fenn’s heavy loads carrying the 42 lbs. treasure (two trips)
Water high could also have multiple meanings
·       The water at Seidel’s suck hole is deep and there is a drop off at its beginning.
·       The creek that runs between the Arkansas river and railroad tracks is at a higher elevation than the Arkansas River

If you’ve been wise and found the blaze, Clue #7 – I believe the blaze is the diamond shaped yellow ‘Dip’ road sign that is located in the rocks between the river and railroad tracks on the east side of the river just north (upstream) from Seidel’s suck hole.  Extra later affirmation hint from Forrest – he said he walked ‘less than a few’ miles to hide the treasure.  The ‘Dip’ sign potential blaze is located approx. 2.5-2.75 miles north from the Stone Bridge ‘put in’ meaning it is less than a few (3) mile hike.  Forrest said he made the two trips in one afternoon and two trips to this location including hiding the treasure would probably take about 4-5 hours which is a full afternoon.  Extra affirmation – Forrest said some searchers have been within 200 feet of the treasure and that some people have walked right past the treasure and had no idea.  Multiple searchers have written in blogs that they searched along the west side of the river at Seidel’s suck hole (those who started a Hecla).  The distance across the Arkansas river from the west side to the blaze is approx. 200 feet.  Also, people rafting on the Arkansas river sometimes get out of the raft on the east side before Seidel’s to inspect it and watch others go through before going through themselves…these people would walk right past the treasure without knowing it.  Extra affirmation – Forrest has said the place is safe and a place you would want to take your kids.  Many families with kids on vacation go to raft these rapids on the Arkansas river.  For a ‘wise’ stretch hint, please see below for ‘in the wood’ clue.

Dip Sign Blaze

Look quickly down, your quest to cease, Clue #8 – I believe this has double meaning.  First, I believe it is a confirmation of the correct Blaze (i.e. if a sign is warning you of a ‘dip’ ahead, you should probably heed the warning and ‘look quickly down!’ (this is the clue that sunk its teeth into to me the most…I was ‘going in confidence’ after thinking I solved this clue).  This clue was also telling me that I should look a short distance (i.e. ‘quickly’) south (i.e. ‘down’stream) for the chest.

But tarry scant with marvel gaze, – Unsolved, possibly not a clue – possibly telling the finder of the treasure to be quick with taking the treasure since this location is full of tourists.  It might be a reference to all of the tar covered railroad materials located in the area (this tar would not be on the treasure and thus scant).
Just take the chest and go in peace. Unsolved, possibly not a clue– I could not find anything related to a peace symbol (except maybe the cottonwoods that had trunks that branched out from the base of the tree creating a peace symbol…but that is a major stretch).  It could simply mean that the finder should just leave this public place quietly since he/she is now carrying 1-2 million dollars worth of treasure.

So why is it that I must go – Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint
And leave my trove for all to seek? Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint
The answers I already know, Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint
I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak.  More of a hint than a clue, I think this should tell the solver that the distance travelled was significant and not short…. Even though Forrest was 79 or 80 he was a fit lifelong treasure hunter…the walk made him tired and weak and he was forced to make two trips to carry the heavy load.  After Forrest hiked to Seidel’s suck hole and back to his car twice, he would certainly be tired and weak at age 79 or 80 (approx. 10-11 miles total for the two round trips).  Some might have underestimated the distance he could have travelled.  The elevation change on those railroad tracks between Stone Bridge and Seidel’s is slight and not significant, which makes this possible.  I have done it…I am not very fit…I think he could have done this even at age 79-80.

So hear me all and listen good, Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint
Your effort will be worth the cold. Unsolved, possibly not a clue.  Hint – all of the potential locations have the potential to be warm and cold depending on the season since Forrest has indicated the location is between 5,000 and 10,200 feet in elevation.  The mulch-like soil in the small wooded area to the east of Seidel’s suck hole would be cold and moist so if Forrest put the chest into the mulch then the finder would probably get cold moisture on his/her hands or gloves.  Forrest also said to bring gloves hinting the hands might get cold when digging in the cold moist mulch.

If you are brave and in the wood – Clue #9 – There is a small stand of cottonwood trees (maybe a dozen or two dozen) just south of the blaze and directly east of Seidel’s suck hole and the railroad tracks.  The ground around the stand of cottonwood trees is soft and covered with leaf litter.  Under the leaf litter is a layer of rotting wood, roots, mulch, and rotting leaves…it was slightly moist when I was there in the summer and would be wet in the spring thaw or after a rain.  Extra hint – Forrest has stated that he knows the chest is wet but not underwater.  If it is covered with that mulch like leaf litter it would be moist and wet after a thaw/rain (also, the cottonwood was known to Native Americans and pioneers as a ‘water’ tree (often pointing them to the location of water)).  I am not sure why the word ‘Brave’ was used…the area is not scary.  Digging through the mulch was not fun, but I was not really scared.  I did not see any rattlesnakes.  I did not see any native American rock drawings (i.e Brave as in Native American reference).  Possibly you need to be brave to just be searching for treasure on public ground (or maybe more specifically doing some ‘digging’ (i.e. with your hands) on public grounds).  Digging with a shovel might be frowned upon?.  Forrest has not confirmed nor denied the treasure is buried.  If the treasure is under the leaf litter / mulch / rotting ground, would that be considered buried?  Forrest has indicated that a metal detector would only help if ‘you are on exactly the right spot’ (yes, that is how metal detectors generally work…I think a metal detector would help if you are in the wood).  Stretch hint, the scientific name for this Rio Grande Cottonwood tree is Populus deltoides wislezenii (maybe the ‘Wise’ reference above is an abbreviation of the scientific name?).  Extra affirmation – again, Forrest suggested taking gloves…gloves would definitely help protect your hands and keep them warm when moving around the cold, wet, heavy leaf litter/mulch surface in this area…you might not need a shovel, just some gloves.

In the Wood

I give you title to the gold.  Unsolved, possibly not a clue

Other hints that help ‘rule in’ this location/solution.  It is safe and not dangerous (Forrest has said this about the location).  There are no human trails (not many access that side of the river along the tracks…and Forrest might not consider the railroad tracks a human trail).  Although he would likely not admit it, Forrest Fenn seems to want to leave a legacy that would immortalize him in some ways (i.e. writing memoirs, books, autobiography, etc.) and choosing a famous location that gets thousands of tourists every year would be a great choice for someone wishing to have a long lasting effect…just think of how people that rafted through Seidel’s suck hole would react when they found out they were within 100 feet of this treasure…and think of how many people would see, and talk about, a possible future monument to Forrest Fenn erected at the location of the Dip sign blaze?  This would be discussed with tourists on all future rafting trips through Brown’s canyon…Forrest Fenn knows a thing or two about making this type of big splash and seems to like the notoriety.  I think he would choose a high impact location like this as opposed to something more obscure (just my opinion and Forrest Fenn might not agree with me).  One thing that cannot be argued is that Forrest is a brilliant marketer and promoter.  Nothing in the poem, and none of Forrest Fenn’s subsequent public hints / clues / statements have ruled out this location.  My primary concern with my solution is that I could not find any evidence as to why this location might be so special to Forrest that he would like to be buried there…and that  is potentially a big problem.

The only other problem with this solution is that I do not believe the treasure is there.  On July 1st 2017 I searched all dead logs, in the hollows of the cottonwoods, all through the leaf litter, in the rock crevices, etc…and no treasure.  I even purchased a metal detector and made a second trip July 3rdto the location to see if it was located in the mulch somewhere that I did not originally search and all I found was some old wire, pieces of metal, iron railroad track parts, old beer cans, etc.  I did not find the treasure.  Confirmation bias is a factor, and it is quite possible I think this solution is better than it actually was…unless Forrest brought a shovel and buried it in an area of hard packed soil (as opposed to the loose mulch) that I did not really search…I did get one intriguing hit on the metal detector in one spot of hard packed dirt that I did not dig because I did not have a shovel and could not do it with my hands.  It might be worthwhile for someone to explore the area with a good metal detector and a shovel.

Dave from KC, MO

120 thoughts on “Brown’s Canyon Solution

  1. Thinking for sometime about the treasure, wondering who is close to it. I wonder how many times, we’ve been so close you could taste it and Forrest is yelling in private, right there, right there! Sending everyone good luck on your hunt.
    “Goodnight” Forrest

  2. I too , have been on both sides, trouble is, at least from perspective of living relatively close, (110 mi), is for a westerner, this area would be really marginal to be considered in the mountains. lots luck, good thinking,

  3. ps, i was considering the small R R bridge over RR gulch on the w. side, but as u said not below the home of Brown, and as FF restated not in/below man made structure. W. side of River too many human trails and steep banks.

  4. I like it because it’s local but I can’t make the poem fit my location. Without the first clue, which I believe is “As I have gone alone in THERE”, I’m still playing Canasta. I enjoyed the ride though, Thanks for sharing.

  5. Dave…
    Good wite up.
    F said he drove his car, made 2 trips from it, to hide the treasure. So, tfbtftw, in his book is “about ten miles”. That’s the length he drove, NOT walked, in the canyon down. He “put in”–parked, below the HOB.
    I don’t feel that this is the special place he’d want to lay his body to rest on the treasure. To me, it is more of a private place, special to him, beautiful and scenic.
    HOB could be at the base of a canyon, overlooking a spectacular view of a pristine valley.

    No metal detector nor shovel needed.
    Also, the clues refer to geographical locations, not names. So Brown Canyon, Molly Brown, Joe Brown, Ranger Brown etc, are not fitting the clues.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks Donna, I respect your opinions and you might be right. There are big parts of Forrest’s life that are not discussed much in his books. For example, he does not really discuss special places he took his kids. One thought I had was this place might be a special place he took his kids but that is a guess driven by me trying to make my solution work. Fenn has hinted about kids several times, so my guess about this is not completely out of left field. As for your opinions about the home of brown, metal detectors, shovels, etc…you could be right, but I think those are still unknown. As for the distance, I think 10-11 miles ONE WAY is too far to walk to the starting point…but I do not think 2.5-2.75 miles one way is too far to hide the treasure (ff said he walked less than a few…and that could have been one way). Best of luck to you and your search. Dave

  6. Brown’s Canyon sounds interesting – just doesn’t appear all the clues are known with this particular solve…

  7. There was no wandering involved at all. I knew about the dip sign and stand of trees next to Seidel’s Suckhole before I ever left my house. I went right to it…it was a very targeted search with zero wandering. When I got there, I learned the trees were cottonwoods and also learned about the loose mulch-like surface, and thus I decided I should make a second trip with a metal detector so that I would only have to move the mulch surface in places indicated by the detector. The poem has 9 clues per ff…I had solutions to 9 clues plus hint interpretations for several other lines of the poem. Not every line in the poem points you to the treasure. A bit surprised by your dearth of knowledge…bless your heart.

    • Hi Dal, this was a reply to a post from someone that called me an idiot wandering aimlessly in the woods…I think you have since deleted that comment…I just do not want anyone hear thinking I am saying they have a ‘dearth of knowledge’ because that was only meant for the person that called me an idiot….and not anyone else hear….now that the original comment is deleted this reply could be taken out of context. I am fine with you leaving it in hear because it provides some other information about my search not originally shared.

    • Hi Road, yes, there is lots of sage brush in the canyon. I know the Dip sign was there in 2010…but not sure of the exact date it was placed there…how long it lasts is tough to say. Best of luck! Dave

        • Hi Road, Hard to say. It certainly is a large enough area and it is right next to a class IV rapid…the question is why would Seidel’s Suckhole be important to Forrest Fenn and I have to say that I have no idea about that. Did he and his kids have a great time rafting there? Did he catch large trout there (the Arkansas does have large Brown trout in the canyon and people fish it despite the rafting)? As noted in my solve, the lack of understanding about why this would be a special place to Forrest is one of my biggest concerns about the solve. I do think it is possible that Forrest has special places that he has not alluded to in any of his writings.

  8. Solid solve and one I had considered from a general perspective (I think I got to east side of the river north of the stone bridge before abandoning it for some reason I now forget).

    Nice write-up too.

  9. Thanks for sharing, Dave. I really do like your way of thinking in drawing together a lot of geographic features that make sense, and drawing in a lot of parallels from supporting evidence outside of the poem to back up your ideas.

    The weakest points seem to be the very beginning and ending of this solve. Your WWWH does not seem to be one specific point. I’m not saying that this is necessarily a bad thing, but compared to other solves I read about in the Browns Canyon area, this has been the first time I’ve seen just a general reference to several hot springs upstream, rather than one specific one (like Princeton Hot Spring, for example). Maybe WWWH should be considered as a general area containing many sources of warm waters, rather than a specific point on a map? Interesting food for thought.

    And I thought the dip sign was a funny idea for the blaze, but seems a bit weak just because of the potential for this sign to be blown or knocked over. Did you see any other potential blazes in the area? Might be worth another search for a different one.

    I really do like your description of the middle of the solve though, and the manner you are thinking about your solve. Thanks again for sharing with us. Good luck on your next search!

    • Hi Blex, Thanks, I did not go into much detail for WWWH because that has been pretty well established already for Brown’s canyon and I did not want to be too redundant about it. I provided more details where I had novel ideas that I had not heard previously. As for the life expectancy for the DIP sign, that is hard to say. It is secure and I know if was there in 2010. I would say its life expectancy is greater than a tree but less than a large rock carving. It is certainly out of place out there…it is a comical warning sign for Seidel’s suckhole. It certainly qualifies as a blaze, which could be a large number of things per Forrest….is it “THE” Blaze? Well, ‘look quickly down’ convinced me…but I am open to that being a coincidence in the poem. I think Forrest one time was asked if the Blaze could be figured out from the poem and after he gave it some thought he said he did not want to answer that question (paraphrase…you will need to find that quote)…to me this told me that it is possible that the poem itself would confirm the blaze. Who knows. Best of luck to you and your searches. Dave

    • Question to Forrest 6/24/2014:
      “Can the blaze be pre-determined by the poem or can it only be determined at the search area?- becky”

      Forrest response:
      “Becky, you are a rascal to ask that question and I have been sitting here for about fifteen minutes trying to decide what to say. Well, it has been thirty minutes now and I think I’ll pass on the question. Sorry.f”

      • The idea “predetermined” seems to be important, but not so much confirmation/confirm the blaze.
        I have to wonder if “wise and found the blaze” long with, “look quickly down… but tarry scant with marvel gaze” is telling us we need to watch/view something, for our “quest to cease.”
        If you notice the question doesn’t ask about finding the blaze, just determining the blaze.

        Predetermined; establish or decide in advance, prearranged…[ I like prearrange in thought ].
        Determined; Having made a decision, free from doubt…
        Both usages of the words doesn’t say the blaze is known, but may imply knowledge establish beforehand.
        “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze” we seem to be told there is more to do… look, gaze…

        Is the blaze a single object? In a word, yes.

        So why is it we seemingly need to look and gaze?
        Blaze means; fire. Blaze; is a marker/ pointer~ as in blaze a trail.
        Why can’t it mean all of those? The usages or multiple meanings might come into effect… the sun is used as a light source that gives a shadow or beam of light affect as a pointer from a stationary marker…

        we’re told that the RM’s are still moving and that will have an effect on the clues a 1000 years from now [3009] could the blaze possibly be knock-out of line with the natural movement of the land and sun alignment?
        Is this understood within the poem as predetermined; decide in advance, certainty beforehand- ? – and wise as in “found” the blaze[marker / pointer as to determined; free of doubt… for us to discover the chest.

        Ok, maybe it just a sign… ‘you are here’
        But I have to wonder why a sign or a stationary marker, would make it more difficult as time rolls on [ natural movement of the land ] to locate the chest… IF the chest is at a marker/blaze.

        Just rambling and rumbling and analyzing… I just wonder what it is we need to “plan” for and “Observe”

        • Hi Seeker, I just want to note that the line ‘look quickly down’ allowed me to solve the blaze without being at the search area. I found a photo of the DIP sign posted by someone that hiked the railroad tracks in April 2010. When I saw that sign, I looked at the poem and thought “eureka!” So, if it is the blaze, then I was able to use the poem to pre-determine the blaze prior to actually being at the search location….and so Forrest’s careful non-answer adds credence to my solve. Now, I of course am open to this not being the correct blaze and that the confirmation line in the poem “look quickly down” is a mere coincidence. But where Forrest’s comments support my solve, I am going to bring them forward and again, this non-answer does somewhat support my solve….but like so many other things FF says it probably also supports other solves. I just have not seen anything he has said or written rule out my solve.

      • Hi Apryl! There’s a website for everything these days! Who would have guessed something like this would exist?

        Apparently “warm waters halt” is in Michigan and “home of Brown” is in the suburbs of Milwaukee. No wonder the treasure hasn’t been found yet! 😉

  10. Bigbluecow ,name calling is not necessary ,just because you don’t like or agree with the solve. Show your intelligence, and find a better way to express yourself.

  11. Blue,
    I agree with PD… I’m not in the least thrilled about this lack of solve, but I dumbfounded at some of the responses as well.
    Maybe you can dial it down a bit, and see that this was nothing more than a chance to check a place out. I mean, Dave was being honest in saying he didn’t have all the information set in stone… but he felt he had enough to have a look.

    What I don’t see, and to be honest in any theory of a search posted as of yet, something that says to the searcher… certainty beforehand, and What took me so long, idea. It seems you had concentrate more on Brown than the first clue [wwh].
    You even stated; “As I have gone alone in there – Unsolved, possibly not a clue or hint. I am concerned that this is actually the first clue and that ‘alone’ is the most important word.” There is no concern at all… fenn has stated [ audio ] WWH is the first clue. There should be little imagination left about what the first clues is anymore. Then again, some were upset when fenn said “wwh is not a dam” and didn’t believe that as well.
    I also don’t see how train track can not be considered a human trail. I mean, it was place by humans for just that reason… to use as a trail from one point to another. Maybe I’m nutz but that seems to be a perfect definition of a human trail.
    Your thoughts on the blaze had me chuckling, to be honest. fenn has stated that most of the clue “reference” were around wen he was a kid, and the might be around 100 or 1000 years longer… is this sign that reliable in those perimeters and idea? [ just a something to think about… a good storm / flood could remove those track. and while the tracks ‘might’ be replaced… would the sign? Its a bit if a stretch for me to think a road sign would be around in 100 plus years… especially for the clue, the blaze ].

    What I don’t understand is your thought; [ in regards to legacy ] “…and choosing a famous location that gets thousands of tourists every year would be a great choice for someone wishing to have a long lasting effect…”
    I’m struggling to understand how a “famous location” is fenn’s special place that he alone knows. He doesn’t strike me as a tourist type, but more as being at places less traveled. I could be wrong… but I personally don’t see the special spot being a famous tourist area, a theme park, a city park, an attraction setting privately own etc. has others would like to think… but that is only my opinion.

    But back to the train track… While we know that fenn said the chest is not in close proximity to a human trail… that is not to say the tracks can’t refer to a clue itself.
    But I still keep in mine that fenn was thinking down the road a 100 years, a 1000 plus years. I think about that as a simple check and balance so I don’t wander to far in thinking that a clue could be something that might not be there tomorrow.

    About your thought of “in the wood” fenn said that while it was feasible to remove the blaze, it would be unwise [paraphrasing]. That doesn’t sound like a lump of tree debris that could rot away within a relatively short time. Which bring s me back to “in there” and fenn saying leaves and debris could blow in there covering the chest [ again, paraphrasing… it would be in your best interest to look up those quotes ]. That seems to imply the hidey place might be covered or “vaulted in” and not so much under a bush or a rotting log [ again, my thoughts go back to “down the road” line of thinking. ]

    Anyways, those are my thoughts, whether helpful or not…

    • Hi Seeker, I did not explain the WWWH clue in much detail because I think it is already fairly well established for Brown’s Canyon and I did not want to be redundant. There are so many places that WWWH apply it is silly to reiterate that solve in detail. I do realize that Forrest has previously stated that WWWH is the first clue but I have also heard him mention that many people miss the most important word and first clue so that seems to be a contradiction by Forrest because everyone knows WWWH is a clue (so who is missing it)? I wanted to emphasize that I was concerned about the word ‘alone’ because I do not have any evidence to support that Brown’s canyon would be a special place Forrest went alone. If Brown’s canyon is special to Forrest, it is more likely to be special because he spent time there with his wife and kids. If it is a special place to Forrest because of time spent with his wife and daughters, then the word alone would simply refer to him hiding the treasure alone and the reason why it is a secret that only he knows and no others including his wife and daughters.

      I spent more time explaining my solves that were novel and not noted previously by others such as the home of brown, the blaze, and in the wood.

      It is easy to say that railroad tracks are not a human trail…it is a trail for machines. It is just as easy to say railroad tracks are a human trail. I would not be so confident if I was you on that point. Forrest once declined to say whether, or not, another mode of transportation was used because he said he did know if he could answer that accurately….and I definitely thought his answer could have pointed to him using railroad tracks. You might be limiting your search areas in a detrimental manner by ruling our the use of railroad tracks. I would recommend you re-evaluate your stance here…just my opinion.

      I think your dismissal of a heavy gauge painted steel road sign potentially being a long lasting blaze (at least 100 years) is short sighted, no offense. This sign was there in 2010 for sure (I have a picture) and I am not sure when it was first put there. It is in great shape and very securely set into place (i.e. it is not loose). Why would it be removed? The wind is not going to remove that sign. Are you an expert in the deterioration of heavy gauge steel that has been painted? It is a funny sign that is a nice conversation piece for the rafting tour guides…there is no reason to remove that sign and there is no reason to think it is going to deteriorate quickly. I chuckled a bit at your dismissal. It could be that ‘look quickly down’ in the poem is a mere coincidence, or it could be confirming the blaze. As noted in one of my comments above, Forrest declined to answer a question about whether, or not, the blaze could be solved from the poem…why would he decline to answer that question? Could it be that a line in the poem is used to confirm the blaze? I think yes.

      In regards to Forrest choosing a famous location that helps him secure a legacy and keep him a topic of conversation for years and years to come…I think I am on solid ground with that analysis. Forrest has been brilliant in his marketing and promoting…he does not love art, yet he was a great art dealer…why? he was a marketer and promoter…I am sorry if this conflicts with your ff idealization, but I am looking at the evidence of who ff is as a person and I see someone very interested in keeping his name relevant well past his death….and his marketer brain would know how to do that….picking a spot like Seidel’s Suckhole would be brilliant from that perspective. I am not saying it is correct, but it is certainly a logical conclusion that should not be so easily dismissed.

      As for the ‘in the wood solve”, I would point you to a dictionary definition of the word ‘wood’: “an area of land, smaller than a forest, that is covered with growing trees.” – That is about as perfect a fit as I can think of for the small stand of 12-24 cottonwoods east of Seidel’s suckhole. The leaves, wood, and mulch surface are soft and can be dug up with your hands….it is surprising how deep you can dig in that stuff with just your hands….the deeper mulch would not be blown away in the wind…it just accumulates year after year and it is all soft, wet, and rotting. When you step on it you sink down into it…that is how soft it is…and WET!

      I hope I have addressed your concerns in a respectful manner and have not appeared to have doubted your obvious preeminence in the scientific field of Fenn poem solving. Ha, good luck to you…I wish you happy and safe hunting.

  12. I’m sorry but you have a few more clues to solve before you can label this a solution.
    Although I do like any story that includes a place called “Seidel’s suck hole”. 🙂

    • I swam seidel once. Not intentionally. A girl fell out just before the rapid. I was stretching to lend a paddle and let my foot come out of the loop. One bucking wave sent me airborne and into the water. With not enough time to reach the boat or shore but enough time to contemplate what was about to happen. This hole is legendary for is unforgiving nature. It held me down for a long time, I would say over a minute, with a quality life vest. Finally it released me from its cycle, and here I am today. Lucky. I will never raft the big waters again. I stick to the smaller, less angry waters. g

      • Hi Ace, I also went through the Suckhole…as a child in the early 1980s….I first watched from the side as the three other groups we were with went through and all three of them lost people or supplies or both. I was scared and somewhat meek but ultimately I was brave and agreed to go through on the raft….our group sailed through with no issues. I will never forget it. It is a special place for better or for worst. Dave

        • 10 4, it is intense. I would advise all not to go to close to the edge above siedel. It is not something that should be gone through without a good boat, safety gear and a solid crew. g

  13. Lets try a new one. In code breaking/cryptography anomilies are the weak points and usually the access points. 1) almost every word in the poem either Rhymes with something, AND has its negat-ative (i.e. new/old, look/listen, go/tarry, bold/weak, brave/meek, up/down, nigh/far, scant/riches, quest/found, halt/go, ect… ect…. down to almost EVERY word.
    However some words dont! Brown, nope. (this is the other anominilie… walk and halt, DO NOT RHYME. now the rhymes in this poem are pretty simplistic (more Dr. Suess than Bob Dylan) and FF could have easily found a rhyming set (say balk…) but this anomilie just above Brown (which is one of the words that does not have a negative). it make me believe that the halt/walk pair are implicit to solving the 3rd level of the true Begin/BROWN puzzel.

    also i believe this (the non rhyming verse) is what FF was noting when he said he was suprised 1 aspect had not been discussed at all in V2

    • jdm…What exactly is the Begin/Brown puzzle? And …where do you get a third level? Just curious what you are saying/thinking. Thanks

  14. Enjoyed your solve, Dave. Thanks for sharing. I think the strongest part is the “Just heavy loads and waters high” element. This location with the railroad tracks and a solve from a few years back up in Wyoming with log flumes seem to be the only solves of this clue that really make me get goosebumps. If not flumes or a railroad, I do believe it’s something to consider for future solves.

    With all that said, Forrest has said that the treasure is not buried. I feel like the mulch aspect is probably not correct. (Of course I could be completely wrong.) I also agree with some of the posters above that the place doesn’t seem special enough. I have not read Forrest’s book, but have read a lot of these posts mentioning it. Has Forrest ever mentioned Brown’s Canyon or that area in his writings? I feel like wherever the treasure is, the general area MUST be mentioned in the book to be special enough to him for his bones to be there. As a former Coloradoan, I would love to be searching in Colorado, but I feel like NM/WY are more likely. With that said, sometimes I wonder if CO is being underutilized. We know Forrest has been back to the area, which makes me think it’s easy for an old man to drive to from Santa Fe. For that reason, Wyoming often seems too far to me, but I understand why people are looking there granted his interest/history with Wyoming.

    So with all that said, great job. I still haven’t been able to come up with a solve myself that gets me all the way through the poem, so you’re doing better than I have. Thanks for sharing.

    • Brent;

      You are not correct in your statement ,” Forrest has said that the treasure is not buried” He has been careful to say that he has not said that it is buried, or that it is not buried. He leaves it as an open question.

      You ask the question, “Has Forrest ever mentioned Brown’s Canyon or that area in his writings? ” The answer, to the best of my knowledge is “no – he has not.”

      I very much disagree with your statement that if Forrest did not mention the place in his writings, that it is not important enough to be THE place. I believe just the opposite. IF a place is mentioned in the books, I automatically dismiss it. That is why I search in Wyoming, but NOT in or near Yellowstone. – Too obvious!

      You say, “We know Forrest has been back to the area, which makes me think it’s easy for an old man to drive to from Santa Fe. ” In a recent interview with some middle school students, he said the opposite. He said that he has NEVER been back to where he hid Indulgence.

      IMO, you really need to do a LOT more research. You seem to have a LOT of misconceptions. Just mu opinion. JDA

    • The actual quote on it being buried – or not is,”I never said it was buried. I’ve avoided that word. I hid it. I don’t mean to imply that it isn’t buried. I just didn’t want to give that as a clue….” Please invest a little bit of time in research – it will pay off. JDA

  15. Dave,

    I am intrigued with your solve area in Colorado. I considered this recreation hot springs area as a possibility when I originally started researching last year. I quickly eliminated the Brown’s Canyon area because it appears too commercialized. However, I was not aware of Fenn’s statement regarding the hiding place being in a place “safe for families”. Where is this published?

    In any case, here are two questions for you: (1) how far of a walk is necessary to arrive at your blaze and (2) Is the blaze anywhere near a trail or road? Fenn said that the treasure is “not in close proximity” to a human trail (or something to that effect). So does a railroad not constitute a “trail” because it is not “human”, or for that matter is a road not a “human” trail? This is one of the enigmas in this hunt. Just how do you arrive at the treasure site without somehow travelling on a trail or road to get in close proximity to the site? I have my own favorite solve also in Colorado, but I have similar issues. What is meant by “close proximity” and what does it mean to be located in a special place not too close to other people’s activities or habitations? These, as well as other clues, are very subjective and could open things up to many different interpretations.

    • Mc;

      The quote you are referencing is this: ““Generally speaking, there are places where one should stay on established trails; Yellowstone is one. However, it reminds me of the worn-out axiom, “If you ain’t the lead dog, the scenery never changes. When I am in the mountains or in the desert, the last place I want to be is on a trail. Ain’t no adventure in that for me. There isn’t a human trail in very close proximaty (sic) to where I hid the treasure”. Please note that he says VERY close proximaty (sic) – you keep leaving out the VERY close, which I think is important.

      Note also that he says not in very close proxamity (sic) to where I hid the treasure. If your road, train track, trail, boulevard or what-ever is early in the puzzle – who cares what it is? You only need to be concerned if it is near the end of your solve – someplace after Forrest would have parked his sedan, and was a few miles away from the place he hid Indulgence. Just something to chew on – JDA

      • The quote where ff said it is not in close proximity to a human trail is interesting. There are many many trails in the Rockies and its clear that ff walked “off” the human trails but within a few miles from when he exited his car (or whatever he was driving). He never elaborated on how much time it took him but two trips in one afternoon speaks to distance as well.

        I wonder how many searchers still follow a trail looking for the chest?

        • I follow a trail for close to three miles, then get off of the trail for about 100+ yards to get to “THE” site. Could Forrest walk 12 miles in an afternoon?… at age 79 or 80? I hope that he could. I am betting all of the marbles that he could…and did. …or did he ride a horse??? JDA

          • Hi JDA – You’re into some long distances. When f said less than a few miles I took that as the maximum distance. Also if he rode a horse, why couldn’t he make one trip and be done?

        • Covert one,
          fenn has kinda, sorta suggested ‘how much time it took’ by telling us he did it in one afternoon [twice], and tells us; “If you can’t make two trips from your car to your solve in several hours, then don’t go.”
          I doubt we’re going to get a more accurate time line than that.
          If 4 hours were the max… up and back twice… that’s a total of 1 hour each way.
          @ 2-mph on an easy pace, we might be looking at 1/2 a mile done in one trip from the vehicle to the hide or approx. 2600 ft. that could be considered… not in close proximity… If we’re just playing with the math.
          Now, if fenn followed ‘all’ the clues to get there -?- that might say something for the size of the area the clues are within… maybe.
          – I follow the clues in the poem when I hid the treasure chest, although I hid it before the poem was complete. (Completed?) f (posted 6/5/2107).

          Did fenn create a clue on site? Did fenn skip a clue that is in the poem now but not at the time of the hiding? Did fenn actually take 15 years in a row to write out the poem or est. years in total work hours, over a 20 plus years, to finalize the poem just right?

          There are still some curious questions… but that’s as close as I can precede a time and distance with what we know of at this point in time.

    • Hi McKendree, Forrest has mentioned that the location is safe and a place you would want to bring your kids. You should be able to find the exact quote if you search for it.

      So the walk from the parking lot at the Stone Bridge ‘put in’ to Seidel’s Suckhole and the DIP sign is just over 2.5 miles per google Earth…and when I walked it I would say that seemed accurate. As mentioned in my original post, there are no human foot trails (or road) on that side of the river because very few people access that side of the river (unless you consider railroad tracks as human trails…that is debatable, in my opinion). I think you would have to talk to ff and ask him if he thinks railroad tracks would be considered a ‘human’ trail…I would not assume either way. “Very close proximity” is highly subjective as JDA rightly points out, there are human foot trails on the West side of the river which is only 200 feet away. Forrest did have an interesting answer to a question about whether ‘other modes of transportation’ were used besides walking and car…he did not answer it because he said he did not know if answering ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to that question would be accurate…to me that was suggestive of the possibility that he used railroad tracks (i.e. are railroad tracks considered a ‘mode of transportation’?)…I would encourage you to find that quote…to me it was important. Best of luck and thanks again to JDA for the help answering some of these. Dave

    • I think ff was telling us it is not near a road or trail that humans travel. However, a railroad is an interesting one….

      • Hi Covert, agree, it is not clear. It could be interpreted either way, IMO. Does ff consider abandoned railroad tracks a “trail” let alone a “human trail”? Maybe yes, and maybe no. Dave

    • 2015 Question to Forrest:
      “Forrest, You said you made two trips from your car to hide the treasure. Besides walking, did you use any other methods of transportation to get back and forth between the car and the hide? Thanks, Edgar”

      Response from Forrest:
      “Edgar, your wording of the question prompts me to pause and wonder if I can answer it candidly, yet correctly. Were all the evidence truly known, and I answered in the positive, you might say I was prevaricating, by some definitions of the word. And if I answered in the negative, you may claim that I was quibbling. So I will stay quiet on that subject. Thanks for the question anyway. f”

        • Hi JDA, Some of Forrest’s ‘non-answers’ are more meaningful than some of his answers. This particular ‘non-answer’ fits nicely with railroad tracks being used by Forrest. Dave

      • ~”Were all the evidence truly known, and I answered in the positive, you might say I was prevaricating, by some definitions of the word. And if I answered in the negative, you may claim that I was quibbling. So…”

        fenn stated he “walked” from his car to the hide… in one afternoon, twice, and less than a few miles.

        By asking about other mode of transportation implies that the questioner doesn’t believe the original comments / statements… for fenn to answer one way or another… would that satisfy the questioner? He didn’t seem to believe fenn’s original statements, why would he [the questioner] believe him now… So he stayed quiet on the question.

        • I respectfully disagree Seeker…I think it is pretty clear from FF’s response that if “all of the evidence was known”… if he answered ‘yes’ about using another method of transportation it would upset some people and if he answered ‘no’ that it would also upset some other people. It simply means that something was used that could be interpreted by some people as a method of transportation and by others as not a method of transportation. For example, if FF used the railroad tracks to hide the treasure would that be considered him using an additional method of transportation? Some might say yes and some might say no. RR tracks fit nicely with this non-answer. Eliminate RR tracks at your own peril.

          • To be honest Dave, I”d need to understand what “used” the RR tracks means. Did he walked the tracks, drive down the tracks in his jeep Cherokee, hop on a train?

            What is fun about the after the facts is, how we can see the same telling and not see what might have been meant… it’s all about perspective of one views and thought. And the reason for talking it all out.

            You seem to want this Q&A to work / wiggle into ‘your solve’… I see the Q&A as fenn saying, it wouldn’t matter if the questioner knew everything fenn does and did… he doesn’t seem to believe the prior information that fenn stated he “walked” from is car to the hide

            You imply that fenn didn’t give all the facts /evidence, so that opens the possibility to another mode of transportation.. ok I can see that as well… to a point.

            What I can also see is the overall question to the answer. Which seems to imply… if the questioner didn’t believe all the other comments, and any other facts / ‘evidence’ that fenn might add would not be adequate to the questioner either.

            For example if fenn add… I ‘walked’ more than 2000′ one way… would that satisfy the inquiry? or If fenn added, I parked the car as close as I could to walk to the hide and follow the clues… would that still be sufficient to the questioner? [just examples folks, no need to repeat them as factual at a later date]

            My point is two folds;
            1. fenn is not going to give out information that is useful. So he needs to be vague on some matters. [if all the evidence were known]
            2. fenn seems to be honest in his comments with [ using fenn’s term ] no subterfuge [ deception ] involved… but at the same time he’s not going to give “all the evidence”…
            exactly how far he ‘walked’, or exactly how long it took him to ‘walk’, etc etc. but just enough evidence for a logical conclusion, he “walked”

            IMO… [and that’s in no-way says I can eliminate possibilities…]
            But the most logical assumption is fenn took the same route as he tells us to follow, he “walked” that route, twice, and tells us “we” [ searchers ] should be able to “walk” that route as well, in several hours, or don’t go. ~And possibly, from the same area he parked at, to ‘walked’ to the hide.

            How do we get around the comment;
            Jun 5, 2017 ~ follow the clues in the poem when I hid the treasure chest, although I hid it before the poem was complete. (Completed?) f (posted 6/5/2107) … and add all those other statements he walked to the hide… less than a few miles, in one afternoon, twice… I mean, “twice” seem important to fenn because he repeats that two trips were needed and tells us to do the same. Another mode of transportation doesn’t fit well with… don’t go where an 80 yr old can’t, carrying a heavy backpack… I assume carrying that load means walking / following the clues.

            What I would like to know from you is… how does fenn’s comment come into play in your solve ‘overall’?

            “I’m not flippant about this. It’s not something somebody is going to be able to do on spring break or a Sunday afternoon picnic. I’m looking a hundred years down the road, maybe a thousand years down the road. People don’t understand that.”

          • Hi Seeker, you seem to have an overly convoluted take on the response from FF about method’s of transportation. It seems pretty simple to me he was saying he used something that could be interpreted multiple ways and that was his reason he did not want to answer. It is good to critically view things from all perspectives, but when problem solving, keeping it simple usually wins the day my friend…I think you might have a tendency over complicate things. I do RR tracks are a very nice example of the type of thing he might have used that could be interpreted multiple ways in terms of a ‘method of transportation’ and if he used those it is a logical reason for him to answer the way he did to that question.

            In terms of you question about FF looking out 100 or 1000 years…I think his answer below sums it up perfectly and fits my solve. I think everything will be around for over 100 years…and probably not in 1000 years. That DIP Sign blaze can easily go over 100 years….will it make it 1000 years? No, probably not.

            Question to Forrest 6/25/2014:
            “Did the same 9 clues exist when you were a kid and to your estimation will they still exist in 100 years and 1000 years? Thanks ~Ron”

            Answer by Forrest:
            “Thanks Ron, thoughtful questions
            The clues did not exist when I was a kid but most of the places the clues refer to did. I think they might still exist in 100 years but the geography probably will change before we reach the next millennia. The Rocky mountains are still moving and associated physical changes will surely have an impact. If you are in the year 3,009 it will be more difficult for you to find the treasure.f”

          • Dave ~’…I think you might have a tendency over complicate things.’

            LOL… that seems to be the trend many like to use. But to be fair… do I think about many possibilities and interpretations involving the challenge? Yep.
            But lets face facts… fenn as given example of over complicating. Basically saying knowing about things out side the box isn’t going to assist in finding the chest. [ that’s a few comments combined ] We have been warned this is difficult, but not impossible… I would think attempting to see the ATF comments would help to not over complicate, but to rationalize a thought process and not force an ATF comment to fit one’s solve.

            Allow me to give an example. fenn stated, in a Q&A;
            Q~You have told people to stay at home unless they have solved the first clue.
            A~ If you don’t know where you are going any trail will take you there.

            At first thought, the answer seems to say… if you don’t know where your going you’ll never know the first clue, right?

            Now lets take the “thought” that the statement is being honest in nature, and related to the challenge. Could that answer be true? It might be or might not be… The point is, if we only think one way, such as fenn is just blowing smoke and not answering the direct question, stay home unless you solved the first clue. a comment already stated by him prior to this question.
            Is he being helpful in an indirect way and the statement is some how true. For example some think the CD is where wwh is or about… can any trail lead you to the CD, metaphorically speaking? or better yet, what kinda trail is fenn talking about. I mean, water seem to be theme to the poem, right?

            To dismiss or force fit anything is a mistake in my book… not examining possibilities for thought, or as some like to say, over complicating, is foolish to me not to think about.
            It’s not so much about what one’s conclusion to the ATF comments ‘relating to their solve’… it’s more about thinking what is more likely a ‘reasonable’ conclusion… without forcing it to work or dismissing it because it doesn’t work in one’s solve.

            My only chatter here about your solve posting is… I have to look at all the comments do find common ground for a clue, clues, or solve to be reasonable. Other wise why bother with the ATF comments at all.

            IMO only… a basic street sign, as a clue, a place for a clue, a reference to a clue doesn’t say it will be there tomorrow, 25 year 100 years and certainty not a 1000 plus years down the road.

            The quote / answer to Ron’s question actually helps about what might be a “clue reference” or not
            …The Rocky mountains are still moving and associated physical changes will surely have an impact. If you are in the year 3,009 it will be more difficult for you to find the treasure.f”
            How can a street sign be associated with physical changes of movement in the RM’s. If it moves, how does it affect the outcome? IF its removed, and that is a very plausible possibility, and is a clue reference… well we’re screwed, right?

            I just don’t see the thought process as this being a viable, reliable clue reference… sorry.
            I’m only attempting to see it from fenn’s thoughts… but… “People don’t understand that.”

            But thanks for the chat, its been fun.

          • Hi Seeker,

            The DIP sign can last 1000 years if ANY SINGLE (of the many) commercial rafting companies, decides that it is a ‘Staple’ landmark worth protecting. It is heavy gauge steel and not a tree….it could last 1000 years if they decide to maintain it with regular sanding, priming, and painting. Now, is it likely to last 1000 years? No. Why? I can think of multiple answers directly tied to Forrest Fenn’s response about geographic changes:
            1) Geographic changes to Brown’s canyon could, over a long period of time, destroy the commercial rafting economy in Brown’s canyon (rapids become too severe for tourists?). If the commercial rafting industry is destroyed, it is less likely for the DIP sign to be maintained…it would eventually deteriorate after 100+ years and rust away.
            2) Global warming could cause anomalous weather patterns that result in a massive flood of the Arkansas River through Brown’s canyon. This flood could dislodge trees along the banks and one of the dislodged trees could float downstream and smash into the partially flooded DIP resulting in it becoming dislodged.

            Now that was not difficult at all. I am surprised that a person like you, that tries to see all angles, cannot see those angles I just describe above. Maybe some bias involved limiting the true number of angles you are looking at?

            I will now bid you farewell with a final quote that I think you should take to heart from Forrest…be sure to read the last 8 words multiple times and repeat them to yourself at least 10 times…maybe say those last 8 words a few times to yourself every night before you go to sleep:

            Question to Forrest 7/6/2014:
            “Forrest, you talk about the clues being difficult to solve (opposite being easy) yet that the solutions are simple (opposite being complex). Yet when I read the stories of other searchers, I often think that their solutions to the clues tend to be either easy solutions or made out to be very complex and over-thought. Are there any suggestions you would give in approaching the clues and solving them? ~Craig”

            Answer from Forrest:
            “Craig, there is no substitute for thinking and planning and observing and looking at maps, unless it’s the desire to keep it simple.f”

          • LOL Dave,
            You’ve given some great examples of why it should not be considered the blaze… flood waters, maintenance, replacement need by others.. others that fenn has absolutely know idea would or could be done. Well, maybe he is on the broad of directors a commercial rafting company. That might help…

            Oh! and thanks for the quote. I never seen it before… Hey! JCM have you ever heard that quote before? might want to add it to the collection… Just saying.

            The problem isn’t your solve Dave. the problem is, you just don’t seem to like anyone suggesting in a conversation about your posted brilliant Dip of a solve… something just doesn’t quite add up.

            Maybe I forgot to fluffinnutter my comment, ‘again’… dang! ther’ be a lot of tenderfoots egos ’round t’ese heres parts. Or as they say in my neck of the woods… bless your heart.

          • Direct quote from Seeker’s very first post to this thread “I’m not in the least thrilled about this lack of solve”…

            …now, after I defend certain aspects of my solve to the nth degree (based on facts and Fenn quotes)…Seeker says “The problem isn’t your solve Dave. the problem is, you just don’t seem to like anyone suggesting in a conversation about your posted brilliant Dip of a solve”

            Now suddenly the problem is not with my solve? Does this Seeker sound like an individual that ‘can dish it out but not take it’? Yes, it does….not to mention the second sentence above from Seeker does not even make any sense.

            Seeker: If you want to be a Fenn Treasure Internet troll on the blogs you should probably develop some thicker skin.

            I have many comments above outlining my concerns with my own solve and I have stated several times above I could be wrong….but I will shoot down the confrontational and insulting arguments made by others that are not supported by the facts, the poem, Fenn’s comments, or the evidence…or if I feel the person is making statements from their own personal biases (that probably stem from their own solves from which mine conflicts). I have done that and will do that.

          • Dave if your going to quote me, ya might want to use the entire quote as related.

            “The problem isn’t your solve Dave. the problem is, you just don’t seem to like anyone suggesting in a conversation about your posted brilliant Dip of a solve… something just doesn’t quite add up.”

            While you think I’m ‘insulting’ you… you have obviously taken offense by directness when I’m simply discussing your posting. But seeing ya feel bad… I’ll fluffinutter it a bit, here ya go… great job! One of the best unsolved solves I heard to date. At least you’re not claiming to be member of the first two clue club or I know within 12′ club… I’ll give ya point for that!

            Best of luck, be safe out there, god bless, your a great competitor, glad you have an excuse to get off the sofa, and all the other politically correct crap as well. { insert smiley face waving…}

    • Mary Capterton Morton in 2015 quoting Forrest:
      “The chest is not in a dangerous place,” he has said. “It’s somewhere you could take your kids.”

  16. I think DIP is a sign…a sign of what, I dunno. I will tell you why that sign is not the blaze. Because it will be stolen at some point in the future. Trust me, it will happen.

    Dave, you are forcing your fit with lots of general ideas and thoughts. You have ignored large portions of the poem. Do you think each one of your thoughts are matching exactly with what ff was thinking? Not possible IMO.

    I am 61 and in excellent shape. You walked 2.5 miles to your spot one way? And ff did two round trips in one afternoon at age 79 with a 30 lb pack for about half of the way? Didn’t happen. Have you seen him teetering around his yard? He said “as I walked back to my car, I said to myself ‘Forrest Fenn, did you really just do that?’

    Thanks for sharing but my suggestion is have a solid solve before heading out next time.

    • Who the heck is going to steal that DIP sign? You obviously do not know the area. It is not easy to access at the point of the DIP sign…someone could easily steal a road sign from an actual road as opposed to crossing the Arkansas River and then hauling it 2.5 miles to their car. This is silly and not worth a response but I could not resist responding to this level of dearth. The only reason it would be stolen is if it were, in fact, the Blaze…if it was the Blaze, it might be worth the effort to steal…but that kinda defeats your whole argument, now doesn’t it? FF at age 80 was not the same FF now at age 87…did you know him at age 80? I doubt it. Sante Fe is nearly the same altitude as Brown’s canyon and the railroad tracks are virtually flat. Plently of older people hike farther than that…and some actually run marathons. I think you might be forcing some of your own biases with your comment…but congrats on being in great physical shape at age 61. You are probably a tremendous specimen of a man…way to go!

      • Dave,
        You said: “Who the heck is going to steal that DIP sign?”
        Since you asked, I’ll tell you….kids. Back in the day I knew dozens of kids with Stop, Yield, Speed, and street names signs on their bedroom walls. Why did they do it? Not because they were special….just to say they had the guts to steal something. Heck, last year I was in a remote forest campground and no one else was around (I thought). When we came back from a hike we noticed someone had come in and stolen the huge wooden Forest Service campground sign. Go figure. People do stupid stuff that defies logic.

        So Dave, you might be trying a little too hard to come up with reasons why it would ‘never’ go missing. Based on your picture, I’d say it’s more likely to eventually wash away in a high water event, but I’m sure you have a rationalization why that could never happen either.

        I suppose if you were absolutely correct about all your other assumptions you’d be lookin at the TC right now.

        • Hi Colokid, By your name I wonder if you are a kid from Colorado…but anyway, there are no kids on that side of the river unless they are with their parents (i.e. tourist families that have gotten out of their rafts to watch others go through the Suckhole before they go through themselves). It is not easy to access that area. The only people on that side of the river are hikers, and rafters and they will not be stealing the sign. Yes, kids do steal signs…but not in places where there are no unsupervised kids. If a kid wants a DIP sign, there are other easier places to get one (e.g. along a road).

          I think you might be the one ‘trying’ to find a reason it can go missing as opposed to me ‘trying’ to figure out why it cannot go missing. My opinion.

  17. What I like about all the solves that have been published is that they show how thoroughly ff has researched the Rockies to carve out his poem to lure searchers to all the wrong places. That’s why 250,000 people looking for 7 years have no clue where it is. I think it might go down in history as the best treasure hunt of all time. It’s brilliant and IMHO it will take a very intelligent hardworking rascal with bulldog tenacity and a wild imagination to find and retrieve it. But don’t expect him to sell it. He’s going to rehide it and write another poem. He’s going to write another book. Just my opinion.

  18. I have watched most of FF interviews and videos, in my opinion he has a tell that he is unaware of and I believe Brown’s canyon is worth searching. And yes his poem is so masterfully obtuse you can almost throw a dart at a map and work the poem to that point. Just remember that the clues should be lasting throughout time and although the poem is elaborate, the clues are not, they are what they are. If you struggle at making a clue work, move on. The only a ha moment you should have is finding the blaze.

  19. In about 1825 through about 1828 the fur trapper Baptist Brown settled down near the confluence of the Vermilion Creek and the Green River. Of course the cabin he built might not be there anymore, but some ruins might be. Since many historians believe Browns Canyon is named after him, I guess the home of Brown might be there. However, it might be too far from the road for 2 trips back and forth in one afternoon. But it’s some food for thought.

  20. Hi Dave…I read your solve three times and tried to imagine myself coming to the same conclusions as you have. I like the write up and your enthusiastic approach…but I can’t get past the complete omission of many parts/words, whole lines of the Poem in your presentation. This area sounds like a really popular destination and I am sure folks have a great time rafting there…but like you said at the end…”…..I do not believe the treasure is there.” Thanks for sharing/putting it out there Dave, and keep searching.

    • Hi Ken, I think I solved 9 clues and provided interpretations of potential hints for several other lines of the poem, I do not think every line in the poem leads to the treasure. If you have some lines that you think are clues or hints that I bypassed than I understand and you might be right…I do think some of my clues might not be clues and some of the lines I skipped over could be important to the solve. I did search my area in a fairly extensive manner….although I think one more search there with a good metal detector and shovel is probably warranted for someone close by that could do it with minimal effort. Best of luck to you and I wish you happy and safe hunting. Dave

      • a placa ou sinal DIP
        No texo diz placas depois (BEM ) entao vejão isto ESCRITO 2 vezes no texo ( Dr. Peppers) e ( Dr. Pepper) á mais o que singifica isto bom é uma placa,há entendi, sonhos e fantasias ou fadas ,mais o que vocé quer dizer isto (Terra de encantamento) qual placas tem pimentas e bem,terra encantamento).
        . A indecisão é a chave para a flexibilidade,percebi que apareçe algumas vezes tipo 2 ou 3 vezes para frente e para trás esta é como uma indecisão vai para fente ou para trás, palavras que nao pareçe ser nada,mais sao tipo:
        provavelmente 2x,claramente,probabilidade,finalmente,subitá
        alem das letras maiusculas colocadas no texo sutilmente leve como dicas ou sugestão do caminho,tipo 1150 DC,pode ser distancia corrida ate o ponto de parada do veiculo do local chama,blazer,que eu acho que deve ser um acampamento grande com uma fogueira no centro pois pode ser encontrada de dia também,bom é isto vou decifra o que tenho aqui marcado e vou posta depois no decorrer da semana,espero ter ajudado sobre o DIP abraços a todos e boa caça..

      • The DIP card or signal
        In the text, it says plates after (WELL) so I see it WRITTEN 2 times in the text (Dr. Peppers) and (Dr. Pepper) plus what it means is a plaque, there are understandings, dreams and fantasies or fairies, plus what You mean this (Land of enchantment) which plates have peppers and well, earth enchantment).
        . Indecision is the key to flexibility, I noticed that it appears sometimes like 2 or 3 times back and forth this is how an indecision goes to back or forth, words that do not seem to be anything, but are like:
        Probably 2x, clearly, probability, finally, subitá
        Besides the capital letters placed in the text subtly light as hints or suggestion of the way, type 1150 DC, can be distance race until the point of stop of the vehicle of the local flame, blazer, that I think should be a big camp with a bonfire in the Center because it can be found during the day too, well this is going to decipher what I have here marked and I will post it later in the week, I hope to have helped on the DIP hugs everyone and good hunting .

  21. Hi Dave – You have an interesting use of imagination If you want to solve the poem, you should start over and look for something different. You don’ t want follow the same path that everyone else follows when working on the poem. That path never leads to the chest. You may find other treasures along the way but the chest will be found by someone who can see what f sees. This is in my opinion.

    Make sure to state that it is your opinion, or Dal and /or Goofy might get testy. You can claim to breathe but don’t talk about the chase without stating it’s an opinion. 🙂

    Have fun and enjoy the chase!

    • Hi Hear Me All, if some searchers have been within 200 feet why would you not want to follow them? At least for the first two clues?

      • Hi Dave, – Forrest has said multiple times that those searchers who figured out the first two clues had no idea. You don’t want to chase after people who have no clue.

        My best advice is to work on the poem and tune out all the other chatter.

        • Hmm, if they solved the first two I think they did better than most. (i.e. all?) I appreciate your input but I am not sure I agree. If we knew who those people were that solved the first two, that would be valuable information. Some (and I believe Forrest has said it is several) have solved the first two clues and they have let Forrest know. I do not believe it is not as obscure as you might think. I think the solver should start with the assumption they are not the first people / person to solve the first two clues and that many people already have those two. Just my opinion.

          • This is an excellent thread. I agree, more than one searcher has been near. And that was fairly early in the chase. The railroad tracks (heavy loads) and water high aspects keep me reconsidering the Chama and related railroads.
            Keep digging.

  22. Jet Propulsions Lab. August 22, 3009

    “Harry, did we get back that surveillance information for the devastated Brown’s Creek area in the Rockies? That Volcanic eruption near Yellowstone flattened the area for hundreds of miles. It’s been years now, but they were supposed to check that area recently, and wondered if there were any photos available yet?”

    “Yeah Burt, we did get a few photos back. Darndest thing. In this one photo the whole area is literally scorched and barren, except for one “DIP” sign that somehow made it through the Carnage”.

    “Really? That’s remarkable Burt. Kids usually steal those things. Let me take a look at that”.

  23. Franklin, that is correct. On the north shore of Allen’s Bottom is where the cabin sat and Joseph Meek said applicable words concerning TTOTC there. Warm waters do halt not too far from there on the Yampa river.

  24. BTW, there is a little known medicine circle on the Vermillion River that I have always thought might be part of the solve if Brown’s
    Hole is in your search area. Plenty of petroglyphs close by as well.

  25. Don’t pass by John Brown’s Canyon and Creek a bit further south near Gateway there are a couple of unique landmarks on route 141 that can be interesting to learn about. Would someone please find the treasure and release me from this madness:)

    • Hi Jay, You appear to have done a lot of research regarding the Brown’s Canyon area and you appear to be a wealth of knowledge. If you do not mind sharing, can you explain why you are not searching BOTG? Or are you? Why are you sharing all of this potentially valuable research? As for me, I am just sharing my failed solve because I will probably not have the time to make an additional search in the near future and I want someone to find the treasure. I might make another one at some point someday…never say never…but I am mostly too busy with work in the foreseeable future. Are you okay sharing your story here? If not, I understand and I apologize for asking Thanks Dave

      • Dave – Jay is referencing two other Brown’s in completely other parts of Colorado.

        Brown’s Park/Hole is on the Green River; John Brown’s Canyon/Creek is a tributary of the Dolores River.


  26. Dave, did you look on the back side of the DIP sign to see if it said “Mr. Fenn, Principle “? After all, it’s only the last inch that counts. Averaging out all the body of your work, I have reconsidered and now think I will go search there. My motto is “leave no stone unturned”.

    • Hello Toughsled, You know, stupidly, I did not inspect the Dip sign’s back side for any scratched out initials or anything. Good luck to you!! The two places I would have dug (based on the metal detector) if I had a shovel were closer to the large boulders east of the stand of trees (i.e. not closer to the tracks but closer to hillside boulders). One of the spots was covered with mulch and I dug over a foot of mulch with my hands before I got to dirt that was more hard packed…and I did not get down to whatever was setting off my detector. My detector was rather cheap ($200) and it was going off at the top range of gold on my detector but in that same spot it was also going off towards the bottom of the range (i.e. iron or zinc)….in other words, the detector was ‘all over the place’…and this was my first time detecting. That spot is the one in the photo on this blog (In the wood…see above) and is next to a couple of the larger cottonwoods and also some downed logs. Hope you find something! Dave

    • Hi Toughsled, I replied to this earlier but I still do not see it showing up…I sent an e-mail to Dal to see if it went into the spam folder….so you might end up seeing two responses from me on this. Anyway, best of luck….the picture above called “In the Wood” had a promising indication on my detector that I could not get down to because after moving about a foot deep of mulch with my hands I got to hard packed dirt. It is close to the large boulders that comprise the hillside east of the stand of cottonwoods and it is in the area of the stand with the larger cottonwoods. My detector was a cheap $200 and it was ‘detecting’ all ranges in that spot (from iron, to zinc, to silver and gold). I hope your detector is better than mine. Best of luck to you!!! Dave

      • One more thing, to get to the tracks there is a couple hundred foot easement you need to cross from the Stone Bridge to the tracks…the two gates are unlocked. I saw a fella on an ATV at that ranch and I just waived at him and he waived back at me…I believe there were no worries.

  27. Chasers –

    Someone mentioned some of this above and I want to reiterate.

    There are multiple Brown Canyons in the chase area. There are multiple Brown Creeks, Brown Mountains, Brown peaks, tons of Brown meadows.

    In any one of these cases I would recommend that a new person read about the various Browns discussed on this blog. I would also suggest that you are starting with the wrong clue.

    Everyone looking for where to begin should be looking for where warm waters halt. And not the home of Brown.

    I will add a radical idea based on reading several books by Forrest Fenn. The capital B is not intentional. It’a a typo or a mistake. And here we are basing our solves on the fact that the B is capitalized.

    If it was a small b would you be looking at this boring canyon? No. You would be looking for something colored brown or representing brown. And many do and have.

    Go back to the beginning.


    • I had heard that before about the B not necessarily being capitalized intentionally. Someone from brazil mentioned it I think.

        • He begins to understand some of what SR FENN says, as in the 2013 report if I am not mistaken, on public lands and hiding a can from DR PEPPERS, then you notice that he mentions 2 times in his book in the text, there you look at the label Of the can or bottle (in 2,000), just as I think I see the word in the middle of a sentence with Bem máculo and I see DR PEPPERS AND PEPPERS, I think again I already saw this in google images when I look at the board of NOVO MEXICO , Plus what has to do with this WELCOME TO THE NEW MEXICO, WITH 2 PEPPERS EACH SIDE OF THE POINT BEING 1 RED AND 1 TOTAL 4 PEPPERS VERDY, then comes (LAND OF CHARM), ie land of fairies or dreams.
          Then I ask myself and for you if the treasure was hidden in one afternoon, nobody else knows the time it was this, I ask you to cross 2 or STATE one afternoon, Being a trip, you will ask yourself this, In a late afternoon …

      • Começa a entender algumas uando SR FENN diz,como na reportagem de 2013 se nao me engano,sobre terras publicas e de esconder uma lata do DR PEPPERS,ai vocé observa que ele menciona 2 vezes no seu livro no texto,ai voçe olha o rotulo da lata ou garrafa (em 2,000),assim como eu penso vejo palavra no meio de uma frase com Bem maiusculo e vejo DR PEPPERS E PEPPERS,ai eu penso de novo acho que ja vi isto no google imagens ai quando olho placa do NOVO MEXICO,mais o que tem a ver isto BEM VINDO AO NOVO MEXICO,COM 2 PIMENTAS CADA LADO DA PONTA SENDO 1 VERMELHA E 1 VERDA TOTAL DE 4 PIMENTAS,ai vem depois (TERRA DE ENCANTAMENTO),ou seja terra da fadas ou sonhos.
        Ai eu me pergunto para mim mesmo e para vocé se foi escondido o tesouro numa tarde,mais ninguém sabe a hora que foi isto,eu pergunto daria para cruzar 2 ou ESTADO numa tarde,Sendo 2 viagem,ja se perguntarão para si mesmo isto,num final de tarde…

    • Lugnutz ~ “will add a radical idea based on reading several books by Forrest Fenn. The capital B is not intentional. It’a a typo or a mistake. And here we are basing our solves on the fact that the B is capitalized.”

      That’s huge leap of faith… the man worked on and held on that poem in upwards of 20 plus yrs, just to leave a “typo or a mistake”?
      Wouldn’t that be a red herring, for it to get pass the first print… intentional or not? ~It’s his publishing company!

      Q~Mr. Hall asks: “Are there any false clues/red herrings intentionally laid within the poem?”
      A~No sir Mr. Hall.

      And as fenn also stated; …every word was deliberate…

      Radical is the right thought.

      • Seeker –

        Fenn often choose not to correct mistakes when they occur, you can ask Dal.

        I really don’t think he cares about the rules for writing or language.
        he forms his own ideas.

        Most importantly, if you hang your hat on the idea that Brown must be a proper noun you are not allowed at the end to say Hey wait a minute the winning solve had no Brown in it!!

        Keeping an open mind

    • Hi, Lugnutz. While I do not agree with your notion that the capitalization of Brown is a mistake or typo, I do agree with your main point that people who use “home of Brown” as a starting point in solving the poem by looking for places associated with the proper name “Brown” is erroneous. I have nothing concrete to back this idea up however; it’s only my opinion and gut feeling.

  28. Trying to think outside the chest or box. University of Montana.
    Home of the grizzles. Home of brown could be state of Montana.
    Cross into Wyoming at state line. On the Yellowstone river.
    Would be Gardiner south to Yellowstone. So His life changed
    In Idaho. Pictured near some garden 2 weeks before he joined the military. Warm waters halt in the swimming area of Fire hole river.
    And the long green grass in the river after. but what about life changes
    Like going in the military. On sloth creek bride lake looks like arrowhead.
    Maybe come in the silver gate entrance into Yellowstone.
    Sounds like fishing waters crossing into Wyoming thought.
    So is Home of brown the state of Montana. His dad was an all around
    athlete. So many Guesses..

  29. While all evidence completely points to this location, I do have to disagree on the blaze clue. I have a strong feeling that Forrest made the blaze himself rather than using a sign. He mentioned multiple times that he has thought about possible disasters that could alter the blaze and that it will be no accident when it’s found. I do think that more searching will need to be done around that area for any thing that leads to a blaze.

  30. the cabin on the east side of browns canyon in the park was owned by henry brown and his wife. working with a surveyor for 20 years, our blazes were survey blazes, slashes in long lasting trees with machetes or ax. you work to expose interior bark that is white against the color of the bark it faces trails or property line boundries. ff was asked about the legallity of owning the find, he stated that he spoke to his lawyers…you cannot claim, as yours, treasure found on private prop, state lands, fed parks or monuments, or indian land. the treasure must be on us forest land or blm land for you to legally own it. track side of canyon is in browns park. thank you all for great discussions.

  31. Dave,
    I happened to be in the Salida area when I saw your solve. I had been planning on searching near Browns creek (put in below the home of Brown) on the east side of the Arkansas river, not too far from your solution. We had similar theories on the meaning of the clues. I have a couple of questions and comments. The questions are, did you look around the base of the dip sign? Move some rocks, etc. Or was it too close to the river to be safe? I tend to think that the “look quickly down” means that if you are standing at the blaze, you literally look down, meaning it’s covered or buried right there.
    Even though I felt many, if not all of the clues fit, after spending a couple of days in the area, I came to doubt the spot. Trying to get to the river from the west side, I was met with no river access, no trespassing, private property, no turn around, and dead end signs down the roads. Road 194 (Browns canyon rd.) at Hecla Junction put in was fine for reaching the river but you can’t cross the river. BTW, this seemed like another possible “put in below the home of Brown”. I felt it was way too deep and swift to be safe to cross the river. I could hike south towards Seidel’s suckhole (west side of the river) but it was a busy trail. I actually saw others searching rocks and crevices, I assume for the treasure. I didn’t think it made sense to hide the treasure there. The bridge you crossed (from the south) had a private property sign and I was tempted to go through and check the rocks at the base of the dip sign that you described, but I didn’t. The east was on the national monument land but taking 184 into Turret there were more no trespassing signs and closed gates, and my personal favorite, a “piss off” sign. From the north, I could enter the trails at the Browns canyon national monument (east side of the river). I hiked about 3 miles south along the river and hit a dead end at cliffs about a mile north of Browns creek. At that point the railroad was on the west side so it couldn’t be used or accessed for walking south. It seemed way too much distance to use for access to the hiding spot. During the hike, I must have seen 50 rafts go by. It’s a very busy river for rafting. I never did reach the area I planned to search. With each dead end, I lost confidence that the solve was a good fit. Unless 6 years ago the river was more accessible, I can’t imagine Forrest would like that spot or get to it using public access. And the river wasn’t what I had expected. I thought it would be a pretty, quiet stream in some areas but all I found was heavy, brown rapids at every point I could access the river. It may have been due to heavy rain and may not always be like that.
    I loved your solution and write up. I wish you the best of luck in your future searches.

    • Hi Kevin,

      Thanks, the base of the DIP sign is covered with large rocks and Forrest had mentioned no large rocks would need to be moved so I did not bother. I also think it would be a little precarious footing for an 80 year old on those rocks toting a 42 lbs treasure and thus somewhat dangerous. Also, I think it would eventually be found by accident (or stumbled across) if he buried it under those rocks at the base of that sign because eventually some commercial rafting company might decide to do some maintenance on that sign if it starts deteriorating and I do not think Forrest hid it someplace that it could be discovered by accident.

      As for the short road between the Stone Bridge and the railroad tracks I believe it is an easement (i.e. land shared by the BLM and that rancher right there). The ‘private property’ sign you note above is actually not on the unlocked gate leading to the easement road…it is on a surfboard that blocks entry to the north side of the gate (an interesting barrier – surfboards wedged between the bridge and the gate along the north and south side). The unlocked gate at the stone bridge does have a rather new looking (and flimsy) laminated ‘no trespassing’ sign attached to it with two zip ties. I was bold and ignored that sign. I would estimate that the dirt road that leads from that unlocked gate at Stone Bridge to the second unlocked gate at the railroad tracks is approx. 300-400 feet and the private property (ranch land) on each side of the road is completely fenced off (and definitely private). When you get to the second unlocked gate at the railroad tracks there is a new looking sign that notes that it is ‘restricted use’ and part of some creek research project. I saw a rancher on an ATV after using the easement road and I waved to him and he waved back to me and did not say anything. He did not seem concerned. However, I have little doubt that the general public using that easement dirt road from the Stone Bridge to the tracks is discouraged… and if a large number of people started using it they would probably end up locking those two gates that are currently unlocked. Easement law varies from location to location and a person might be able to get prior approval to use that dirt road…but I did not have prior approval…it required me to be somewhat BOLD. Forrest once made a comment that he would not rule out the use of private land, Native American land, forest service land, etc. And I do not know the status of that easement in 2010…was it “restricted use” back then? The other 99% of my trek (and potential hiding spot ‘in the wood’) I believe is considered “BLM” land.

      Best of luck with your search!!


  32. Just curious… When/Where did Fenn say it wasn’t underwater? I saw where he said he knew it would be wet and I’m not sure how you’d be confident something was wet if it wasn’t underwater?

    • The below quote was posted to Dal’s blog (this website) on 29June2017 (i.e. part of the ‘Safety First’ posting by Forrest):
      “The treasure chest is not under water, nor is it near the Rio Grande River. It is not necessary to move large rocks or climb up or down a steep precipice, and it is not under a man-made object.”

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